Monday, January 19, 2009

Try Something Different, Like Writing

An old friend I was interviewing for my new book, How to Write Fast under Pressure (AMACOM Books, 2009) reminded me of the importance of keeping things fresh by writing.

My friend, Matthew J. Loscalzo, is Executive Director of Supportive Care Medicine for City of Hope in Duarte, California. Matt is a leading authority on pain management with administrative, clinical, and academic credentials from the best institutions in the country. He has three decades of research and practical experience in dealing with patients and their families as they cope with terminal illnesses, and he has lectured around the world on palliative care. Listening to Matt is always a learning opportunity.

When it comes surviving the loss of a loved, says Loscalzo, “Time won’t time heal all wounds. Sometimes, the grief can never be lessened.”

Matt urges people coping with grief to write. “You can break out of grief not by trying harder but by trying less. Try something different. Writing is a way of fueling the executive function of the brain,” he concludes. The executive function is the part of the brain that controls emotions, organizes issues, and solves problems.

Need inspiration? Do something different—anything. Really. I hope one of those things is writing because by writing we get better at it.