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5 Tips on Managing Stress as a Creative Professional

Updated: Mar 21

Deadlines, demands, and drama... oh my!


Pictured: A collection of stress toys and fidgets

Managing stress is essential in any career, but especially in a creative one. Creativity requires mental clarity and focus, which can be difficult to achieve when you're feeling overwhelmed. Between tight deadlines, numerous requests from clients, and technology that tends to be unreliable whether Mercury is in retrograde or not, a high stress environment is an inescapable reality for most creative professionals.


Here are five tips for managing stress in a creative career:


#1 - Prioritize your health


Taking care of yourself is essential for managing stress. Although long nights and quick turnarounds are considered the norm for most creative professions, make sure you're getting adequate sleep, eating well, and engaging in physical activity. No creation is worth sacrificing the health of its creator. No matter how you prioritize your to-do list, make sure YOU are always your number one priority.


#2 - Set boundaries


Creating clear boundaries between work and personal life is critical to reducing stress. Set specific work hours and stick to them as much as possible. Avoid checking work emails or taking work calls outside of those hours. Be honest with yourself, your coworkers, and team leads about your capacity. Let them know when you need their help and when you need a break.


"Stress and worry, they solve nothing. What they do is block creativity." – Susan L. Taylor

#3 - Practice mindfulness


Mindfulness meditation can help reduce stress and improve focus. Try incorporating mindfulness practices into your daily routine, such as taking a few minutes to breathe deeply or meditate. Not only will mindfulness practice help reduce stress, it’ll also help inspire creative thinking and new ideas.


#4 - Take breaks


It can be tempting to work long hours and push yourself to the limit, but taking breaks is essential for managing stress. Take short breaks throughout the day to stretch, go for a walk, or simply take a few deep breaths. You are not a machine and even machines require a hibernation or restart from time to time.


#5 - Connect with others


Building a strong support network is essential for managing stress. Reach out to friends, family, or colleagues who understand what you're going through and can offer support. It’s important to get out of your head and engage with something other than your work. Your community of peers, family, friends, and even pets can be just the type of engagement you need.


Do what works best for you


Remember, managing stress is an ongoing process, and it may take some trial and error to find what works best. Be patient with yourself, and don't hesitate to ask for help if you need it. By managing stress, you're not only improving your well-being in the present, but you're also setting yourself up for success in the future.

So take a deep breath, try out some of these stress-management techniques, and remember that you have the power to take control of your stress levels and thrive in your creative career.


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