Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie. —David Mamet

Stress Day

Believe it or not, April 16 was National Stress Awareness Day. I suppose this day was chosen to give people the opportunity to tune into how they are feeling and regroup after the often stress-inducing task of filing their taxes. This year, we’re all feeling the intense stress of COVID-related fears and realities.

The Trouble With Creativity

The trouble with having a vivid imagination, as creative people do, is that sometimes we use it to torture ourselves with worries and fears.

The trouble with having a vivid imagination, as creative people do, is that sometimes we use it to torture ourselves with worries and fears. During times that I am under stress, I try to make sure that part of my self-care routine (in addition to exercise and getting enough sleep) is to consciously keep my mind engaged. It is much harder for me to fall victim to my fears when my brain is occupied in something interesting, such as reading, writing, or some other creative task. This is simply a case of redirecting my thoughts—turning my attention from fear toward something else. In many ways, this is the ideal moment for a creative project. Not because we have so much more time on our hands (I have less, thanks to homeschooling and the hours it takes me to grocery shop and scrub down all of my food items), but because our artistic lives require care and feeding lest they get out of control and go on a rampage.

You Are Not Alone

If you’re feeling stressed, just know that you are not alone. But you will, one day, find yourself on the other side of this moment. The way to the other side is to move through this moment mindfully. See your fear, and then turn your mind to something else. And consider treating yourself to a slice of pie.