How stressed are you? Problems at work is one of the worst culprits for stressing us out and finding a way to balance your life and stress is a challenge. It can kick you in the teeth and really get you down, so the fight against stress is never going to be easy.
By March 2016, I was pretty stressed. I had been made redundant during the summer of 2015 and over the 7 months that followed, I was not only stressing out about finding another job, but I had to face up to the deaths of my brother, mother and aunt.
If things do actually happen for a reason, being made redundant was actually a very good thing, as I was not faced with having to grovel to an apathetic boss for more and more compassionate leave.
My response to stress had always been to bottle it up. Never, ever bottle it up, it just makes things worse. I was lucky enough to have a sympathetic ear on tap but, to a degree, I was still bottling things up.
So to really clear the fog in my brain, I started writing the book that had been rattling around in my head for too many years. My first work of fiction. I started writing it the week I was made redundant. It was hugely cathartic and I felt an adrenalin rush, fuelled with the goal of making discerning bookworms laugh a little; I laughed and cried throughout the whole writing process.
Writing was and still is helping me to heal. Writing is something I enjoy doing, but I never managed to find the time to write my first serious attempt to write fiction.
An “Oh … I’ll get round to it when I retire.” kind of attitude.
Writing was my way of kicking stress into touch. It made me think of other things as I escaped for a few hours, often all through the night when stress has a nasty habit of keeping you awake, as I moulded and shaped my characters into believeable human beings. My brain fog gradually started to lift.
Writing may not be everybody’s idea of a stress reliever, but it has got to be worth a try. Or, take up running, just do something that makes you think about other things and makes your adrelalin pump. Kick what stresses you into touch.