Fifty participants spent 5 minutes each day for a week to write about their negative emotions. They wrote either literal words such as, “I felt anxious or confused,” or they used metaphorical words such as, “I felt like a leaf in the wind.”
Only the participants who wrote metaphors decreased their depression and negative emotion ratings.
They also found that metaphors can affect a feeling. For example, people rated neutral words as more pleasant when they were printed in a white font rather than a black one. We can connect it with “light” which we associate metaphorically with “good.”
Fetterman, A., Bair, J., Werth, M., Landkammer, F., & Robinson, M. (2015). The Scope and Consequences of Metaphoric Thinking: Using Individual Differences in Metaphor Usage to Understand How Metaphor Functions. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology