Updated 2019

While it remains a beautiful privilege to pursue your passion, the modern day entrepreneurial narrative often neglects to account for bumps on the proverbial path we call the creative journey.

Whilst many are inundated with an array of Instagram filtered getaways and glamorous highlight reels, the stories of long nights and rejection tend to fall to the background leaving a number budding creatives feeling disillusioned and unfulfilled.

As you may or may not know, it’s is Mental Health Awareness Week here in the UK and as such this post will focus on mental health specifically in the context of the creative industry.

We have teamed up with Your Green Room to bring you the latest tips on spotting mental health issues in their early stages and maintaining good health.

I had the pleasure of speaking to Clare Scivier (Founder) who describes the idea for the organisation being born out of the frustration over the shift in priorities within the creative industry.

Clare Scivier Founder of mental health charity your green room

Shareholders and market share became the focus over the talent which impacted on the creative output causing stress and anxiety for the people making the music

It is no secret that those within the creative industry, particularly music are challenged by some aspects of mental health. But what are some of the signs that an individual may be going through something?

The Signs

There are far too many warning signs to list as each case is unique but the ones that stood out to me were to do with substance reliance and communication.

Substance Reliance

Drinking and taking drugs for confidence is a big issue. Many times we hear of people drinking to ‘take the edge off’. The problem arises when an individual develops a reliance on these substances to function. If the individual has difficulty carrying out tasks relating to their profession such as getting on stage, writing songs, painting, or coming up with ideas, without being in a substance enhanced state this may be an indication of deeper underlying issues.

Communication

What someone says is usually a demonstration of whats going on internally. While many people are good at covering up their struggles in a society that conditions us to say that we are fine, even when we are not, there are usually giveaways. A few of the signs include increased sensitivity and illogical thinking in addition to withdrawal from regular conversation.

Tips for maintaining healthy mental well-being

When I spoke to Clare she recommended some great tips for maintaining good mental health. These were my favourites:

  • Visualise and plan your goals

having a plan for your goals and working out what tools, capabilities, skills and kind of people you need around you can help to avoid so many pitfalls. Knowing your end goals helps you keep focused and stay motivated. Having a great team around you also ensures that even when you do face difficulties there are people to encourage you and keep you going.

  • Eating healthily

Artist often work long hours, which usually extend during tours and festival season. Eating healthily not only ensures that you have enough energy to physically get through what can be a gruelling schedule, but helps with concentration and your overall mood.

  • Finding a way to relax:

To avoid substance reliance it is is useful for creatives to find out what puts them in the best creative space. Once you figure that out you can create a safe naturally relaxed non chemically induced state in which to produce your work.

Of course one post will not have all the answers or cover all the issues and as such this is just a tip of the iceberg. But the hope is that something, no matter how small, resonated with you.

More information about Your Green Room:
Your Green Room is a new charitable organisation, designed to support creatives and those who work with and around them. They provide coaching in areas such as health and wellbeing, in order to maximise sustainable creative careers.  For more information email clare@yourgreenroom.org