Sunday, October 27, 2013
Struggling with Work Stressors and Remaining Creative
My struggle is STRESS: learning to still be creative while dealing with the stressors of teaching.
As soon as the stress of teaching kicked in, my morning reading ritual got pushed aside in exchange for grading papers and lesson plans. I stopped working in my journals because the connection with my creativity got short circuited by the thousands of stressful thoughts circling and recycling in my mind. I am startled at how quickly I fell back into my old habits: not sleeping, getting up in the middle of the night to grade papers or complete some required task that I didn't have time to complete during teaching hours. When I got home my mind was too frazzled and my body too exhausted from getting up so early to do anything more than lie down on the couch and watch mindless TV. After dinner I would inevitably fall asleep watching TV. My husband would wake me up to go to bed but once there my mind would begin racing with thoughts of the next day, things that happened the previous day or week, the papers I promised myself I would grade as soon as I got home but didn't…. I couldn't sleep because I couldn't get my mind to rest. Then the anxiety over not sleeping yet another night would kick in and I would find myself once again getting out of bed at 1:30, 2:00 a.m. to grade paper or complete one of many of the endless required teaching tasks. The cycle was broken only by the dawn of the weekend. I found myself looking forward to Saturday mornings when I could make a pot of coffee and steal away in my office to work on creating ATC’s or a journal for a swap. This was the one day when my mind allowed the ticker tape to stop recycling and allowed the bottled up creativity to let loose.
How do you deal with work stressors and still stay connected with your creativity?