Get Back Up Again: Why Staying Physically Healthy Is Important for Creativity

No one likes getting sick. Okay, maybe there are some people, especially if it gets them out of responsibilities – school, work, you name it. But the hardest thing to do after recovering is getting back up and going with the flow again, doing your best to catch up and fulfilling obligations that you’ve neglected because you were physically unable to. It shouldn’t be too hard if you had all the time in the world, or if no one relied on your work output. But the world doesn’t stop for people who get sick, which makes illness rather problematic.

The “real world” aside, getting sick is also problematic when it comes to working on your creative projects. You may already have hit that gold vein, may have found a lot of interesting things to fuel your fiction, and maybe you’re already on a roll. But then comes a rather debilitating illness that forces you away from your laptop, or your tablet, or what have you. Basically, you’re away from your keyboard for a few days, and perhaps during those few days you’re thinking about what you’re going to do when you recover. If you recover. Finally, that fated day comes, and you’re allowed to get back to your normal routine. Except when you sit in front of your laptop, and look at the documents you had to leave hanging for a while, nothing comes. The jolt of inspiration that should have built up over the past few and pretty much unproductive days is not there, and you’re left confused.

It’s a problem that a lot of people experience, but for those who are in touch of their creative side, getting back into the groove can be more difficult. Creative work already involves touching a certain mindset, and one already struggles with that kind of work even without illness. Meanwhile, recovering from an illness just makes it all the more difficult, because the body is still not strong enough to let you pay attention to your creative project. You may have heard of artists engaging in unhealthy habits to get that creative mindset running, but go overboard and you may not be able to get that mindset running, at all.

So what am I getting at? It’s important to stay healthy. Whether it’s your eating habits, or sleeping habits – and both are questionable things, where a lot of famous artists are concerned – make sure that you’re getting the right amount of sleep or the right kinds of food. Junk is easy to eat, sure, but it pays to eat the right food. Among other things, of course. Find time to get away from your keyboard for a few minutes to an hour a day, maybe have some exercise – and exercise will help, because physical activity will help get the mind running. There’s no problem getting back to your creative project after a quarter or a half-hour of work out, compared to getting back to work after you get sick.

Finally, as much as you’re making a habit of writing a lot, make it a habit to follow physical work-out or healthy eating habits. You might be surprised at how these will all work together to help you actually deal with your creative work.

Jillian

Jillian is an English Literature graduate who loves reading science fiction and fantasy, and is a big fan of J.G. Ballard. She is obsessed with coffee, video games, and rottweilers, and keeps herself busy by writing and walking around a lot. She’s currently reading Jeanette Winterson and a lot of YA literature.

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