On the surface, stress might seem like a good way to kick-start productivity, but studies show that when we are under stress we can’t think as broadly, widely or deeply. Stress can increase motor function but it decreases perception, cognition and creativity. – Beth Kuhel
If you’re someone who creates – a writer, artist, photographer, musician, songwriter or another type of creative – chances are stress has obstructed your creative process more than once. It may even be an ongoing challenge for you, taking the form of resistance, writer’s block, self-doubt or constant overwhelm.
I believe storytelling is powerful. Where we share our own stories of stress, others can realize:
- They’re not alone. They’re not the only one who has felt trapped by stress.
- They don’t have to accept an overload of stress as the norm.
- There’s a way out. New ideas may be sparked that lead them out of the pit of stress.
Today, I’ve asked 7 talented women – creatives who especially inspire me – to share their personal stories of stress along with their most effective stress dissolving strategies. I suspect at least one of their stories will speak directly to you and may bring an “aha” or two.
As I read these stories, I see common threads as well as unique angles on addressing creative stress. Ultimately, you must get to know your own stress threshold and the triggers that cause you to trip over it. But seeing how others work with stress and then adapting the methods that resonate for you can dramatically decrease the time and energy you normally give over to stress.
Then, you’ll have space and a greater sense of ease so you can get on to what’s truly important to you: CREATING!