If you’re coming to Babble.com you’re probably already a fan of blogs – and maybe even have one yourself. This means you know blogs can make for a great pastime, but did you know they might actually be good for your health? A new study suggests that moms might want to add blogging to the list of good things we can do for ourselves like hitting the gym and eating our vegetables.
Researchers from Penn State and Brigham Young University studied 157 new mothers with children aged 18 months and under, and found that blogs and blogging had a positive impact on them. A big reason for this, according to the study, is because these new moms received a tremendous amount of support from the community of mom bloggers they met online. Brandon T. McDaniel, a researcher from Penn State, explains, “We’re not saying that those who end up feeling more supported all of a sudden no longer have stresses, they’re still going to have those stressful moments you have as a parent, but because they’re feeling more supported, their thoughts and their feelings about that stress might change, and they begin to feel less stressed about those things.”
I absolutely found this to be true for me. I’ve blogged through some of my life’s most major milestones: job changes, cross-country moves, marriage, pregnancy, births, and deaths. Some of those events were (obviously) massively stressful. And while blogging didn’t change my stress levels, I am certain I was able to handle the rough things life threw at me because I knew I had the support of my family, friends, and the blogging community. Knowing there are people out there who are experiencing the same things and rooting for you is a very powerful thing.
I also think that blogging is a great way to help a person work through problems and emotions. Being able to sit down and reflect on how I’m feeling has been an invaluable form of therapy (it has not, however, replaced my ACTUAL therapy, but that’s neither here nor there). Conversely, reading about other people’s struggles helps me feel less alone in my own.
Fellow Babble blogger Meghan Gesswein agrees and wishes she had been involved in blogging when she had her first son. “I think those first few weeks would have been much less panic-filled and lonely if I’d had a huge support system that lived in my computer. As it is, seven years and three kids later, I utilize that support system often, and can say with certainty that the voices in my computer, and my ability to blog about my problems, have helped me through stressful situations more than once.”
The researchers admit there is still more examination to do on the subject, but I think they are definitely onto something. What do you think? Can blogs and blogging actually be good for our health?