I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind.
Some come from ahead and some come from behind.
But I’ve bought a big bat. I’m all ready you see.
Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!
Creativity needs a lot of determination — you have to fight against the inevitable setbacks. Some punch you in the face, some take your breath, some are sandbags tied to your legs. To put it differently, you need a lot of resilience to survive the journey, and maybe even enjoy it.
An acquaintance of mine started reading a book about resilience (The Resilience Factor by Reivich and Shatté) a short while ago, and I became curious and had a look at it. I am very skeptical of the “self-help industry” (Penn & Teller’s Bullshit: “Self-Helpless” episode brought it to the point) but I think this book is different and well worth reading. The authors are psychologists and not only go back to the studies on resilience done with children, but use cognitive behavioral therapy as a basis for improving resilience.
While the essence of “it’s not what happens, but how you think about it” would earn a punch in the face in some situations, the authors manage to give useful strategies for dealing with beliefs that hurt more than they use, for challenging them, and putting things that happen into perspective.
It won’t replace a visit to a good therapist if you really got issues, but that’s not the goal of the book. The goal is — simply put — to help you deal effectively with the world, prepare you for its adversities and keep you going, keep you productive.
And I think this is quite useful for anyone in a creative field of work.
Reivich, K., & Shatté, A. (2002). The Resilience Factor. New York: Three Rivers Press.