Happy hormones for creative wellbeing
Hello Creative QB’s,
If you are not getting enough rest or feeling more stressed than usual, you could be experiencing adrenal fatigue. What has that got to do with creativity? Imagine your creativity is a state of wellbeing and that stress, overwhelm and burnout is not a happy playmate for creativity.
Read on to find out how happy hormones promote creative wellbeing.
2 minute read
But I’m about ready to put on my joggers, pack my sketch book and go for a long walk at a pretty nature reserve called the Walka Water Works, a gorgeous part of the world just near where I live. It’s a way to restore my wellbeing after a couple of full-on weeks in preparation of the launch.
I’ve been packing book parcels to post (a task I will never tire of BTW, I’m so happy sending each book out) and hanging out in lots of Zoom calls, but yesterday I woke up exhausted and brain foggy.
You see, I no longer produce oestrogen or progesterone in my body – zip, zilch, zero. That is because after diagnosis from Ovarian Cancer and the life saving surgical treatment I received, I went into what is described as ‘surgical menopause’. My body stopped producing these hormones virtually overnight. The changes affected my brain, bones, skin, heart, blood vessels, energy levels and much more.
But my body does a great job at trying to make oestrogen, it mimics it’s production in the adrenal glands and fat cells (which is also why I have a thickening waistline).
Ovarian Cancer is hormonal cancer, so menopausal treatments such as Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT), have been proven safe to use for some, are tricky for me. Three years post surgery; I have tried all kinds of natural supplements and herbs in an effort to get my balance right. In the end, a combination of anti-depressant and natural therapies works for me.
If I’m not getting enough rest, or I am stressed, I quickly start to feel the effects of adrenal fatigue. That is when my adrenal glands are working overtime, trying to supply me happy hormones. I now recognise the signs very early and listen to what my body is telling me.
You might be asking, Ok, but what has all this got to do with creativity?
Among other things, recovery from Ovarian Cancer taught me creativity is a state of wellbeing and that stress, overwhelm and burnout is not a happy playmate. Even without the effects of menopause, your hormones may play havoc with normal functioning of your body and can rob you of creative wellbeing.
This is just one of the reasons I’m so passionate about teaching people about creative wellbeing. It’s all about re-imagining what your creativity is and were it comes from.
Rather than considering your creativity as another thing on your already mile long to-do list, instead think about creativity as something that is nurturing, that being creative is about expressing self-love.
Creativity is not something to attain, it’s not somewhere out there in the universe, separate from you, it is you, always available, always ready to listen like a long lost friend waiting patiently for you to return.
When I acutely feel fatigue in my body it’s a sign that beyond the physical experience there is vulnerability for me to soften into. I know that sounds counter initiative, because mostly when we are busy, we strive ahead, push through to get through. This might work for a while, but it’s far from a long-term solution. More destructively is the myth that in order for us to be intensely, powerfully creative we must be in a state of pain and distress, that our best creativity can only come from these times.
This is a crazy making state of creativity, not a wellbeing state of creativity. Crazy making creativity can provide energy and intense productivity, but make no mistake, it’s not the definition of creative genius (think Van Gough, Jackson Pollack, James Joyce, Dylan Thomas). This kind of crazy making is ultimately destructive to your happiness, health and creativity, especially for women.
Nurturing with self-love will provide a way for creativity to enter your heart, hands and mind.
When you are feeling stressed or fatigued, stop and feel your body, think about how those old thoughts and negative beliefs, those limiting false assumptions and ask yourself, what are my beliefs around creativity? Have you potentially been striving and pushing through for so long now that it’s feels like there is no other way? Or perhaps you are at the point of resignation, thinking what is the point?
Soften into vulnerability. Imagine you are putting your feet into a cosy pair of slightly stylish fluffy slippers. If this feels out of control for you, journal that thing! Get in down, write it out. You will find courage in your vulnerability through words on the page. Plus it is a perfect way to take time out of your busy life and rest. Rest will help to restore your normal hormonal balance.
Take care of yourself, be kind and creativity will naturally rise within you.
A happy, healthy, creative day to you!
When I acutely feel fatigue in my body it’s a sign that beyond the physical experience there is vulnerability for me to soften into. I know that might sound counter initiative, because mostly when we are busy, we strive ahead, push through to get through.