Is stress killing your creativity?

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This is my weekly installment of “writing about writing,” in which I scan the world to find websites, books and articles to help other writers. Today I discuss a blog post on whether stress is killing your creativity….

Cedrik Kieffer and Dominka Krasnicka are London-based entrepreneurs who run a website called Paid to Exist. They recently posted a blog under the headline, “Is stress killing your creativity?” and I loved their suggestions for helping to restore creativity.

Their tips included:

  • Lying on the bed and doing nothing but listening to music
  • Leaving the phone at home, going to the park, sitting on the grass and watching people
  • Eating the whole tub of salted caramel Häagen-Dazs instead of dinner
  • Deleting junk data from the laptop
  • Watching the whole second season of Big Little Lies in one day
  • Staying away from the phone as much as possible
  • Stopping multitasking

I like the way some of these ideas sound silly (watching a whole season of Big Little Lies) or unhealthy (eating a whole tub of Häagen-Dazs). But they illustrate the double-edged sword of creativity: In order to accomplish something, you need to relax and let go of the need to accomplish anything.

A section of my own website addresses the issue of creativity and writing. But the bottom line is this: You don’t need to be  busy every single minute of every day.

Or, as Cedrik & Dominka put it: “If you feel stressed and the sucked out of creativity, do something that you secretly wanted to do for a while but deemed a ‘waste of time’.

The more you allow your mind to wander and your body to rest, the calmer and more focused you will feel.

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