The recovery process after rehab can often be a lifelong process. When you’re coming out through the light at the end of the tunnel, it may be with a string of broken relationships and torn familial ties.

But that’s just it, you’re at the light at the end of the tunnel. So, how can you use something such as writing, especially in a journal, to speed up your personal and professional success after rehab?

Different styles of writing

Free writing, also known as journaling, is simply writing what’s on your mind without censorship. It could be something as simple as “I woke up this morning feeling tired and drained. My counselor is out of town and it sucks” or, on the other end of the scale, it could be something such as “Bobby called me today after a rough day at work to check up on me. He’s the best accountability partner I’ve ever had and he always makes me feel like I’m cared for.” Sometimes, if you have a thought that you don’t like or one that scares you, it’s still helpful to write it down, uncensored. Ironically enough, this often makes that thought transform itself into something positive and productive.


Writing allows you to reflect on your personal growth. This allows you to see where you’ve been, where you are, and where you’re going. Write your thoughts and struggles out on paper, and then write out what you plan to do about those struggles. It’ll help solidify a good plan in your mind. Reflection allows you to reflect on your past, present, and future actions, while using reasoning and skills gained during rehab to develop a plan. When doing this style of writing, it’s important to answer three questions; what, so what, and now what. Answering these questions in a reflective, descriptive, and analytical sense lets you think seriously about the original problem, how it’s affecting you, and what you’ll do about it.


Imagine you’re writing a letter to a loved one who’s asked you “How are you really doing?” Or that you are writing to someone that you have ‘unfinished business’ with; when writing this specific letter, don’t send it. It’s simply an exercise for you to gain a clearer understanding of how you think and feel towards this person, which can then be worked out.

Remember when you’re writing that the part that makes for true success is when you write the truth. Writing is therapeutic, and helps you to gain a better understanding of yourself. Truth is powerful and can lead to fantastic leaps and bounds towards your goals.