In a book 59 seconds (section "Creating the perfect diary"), Richard Wiseman cited Zech & Rimé (2005) - I had impression that he suggests that according to that study talking about traumatic experiences ("the most negative upsetting emotional event in their life, one they still thought about and still needed to talk about.") didn't have a better effect than talking about a typical day.

Am I right to assume he encourages to not talk about problems? Because here is my contradiction: I think talking about problems can be useful solely because someone else may see a solution you didn't and suggest it to you. Isn't it? So why recommend not talking about problems? Or am I misinterpreting the results of that study or what Wiseman said?

To be completely fair here is his last quote: "So, if talking about negative experiences to a sympathetic but untrained individual is a waste of time, what can be done to help ease the pain of the past?". So maybe he is suggesting that talking about problems is useful however with a trained individual? Still, untrained one could still see a solution to a problem you didn't.


Zech, E., & Rimé, B. (2005). Is talking about an emotional experience helpful? Effects on emotional recovery and perceived benefits. Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy: An International Journal of Theory & Practice, 12(4), 270-287. doi: 10.1002/cpp.460


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