Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Blogging as self-medication
Maybe I've found one of the reasons I do this blog (other than to keep me off the streets): An article by Jessica Wapner in the June issue of Scientific American discusses studies on the therapeutic value of blogging. Blogging is claimed to provide physiological benefits similar to those that have been shown for expressive writing (serving as a stress-coping mechanism, improving memory and sleep, and boosting immune cell activity.) Blogging may act as a "placebo for getting satisfied." The blogosphere offers an antidote to social isolation. (Checking out my 'mdbownds' YouTube video postings reveals that the Debussy Reverie video has been viewed 98,739 times and 157 comments made; this mindblog gets 500-600 visitors each day. While this is social connection, I totally don't know any of you people, except for a handful of friends.) I find fleeting virtual world contacts a pallid substitute for real life huggable friends, and sometimes fret that my time spent hunkering over a keyboard provides too convenient an excuse for the harder work of being a robust member of real (versus virtual) social groups.