The head that never goes home

15 May 23 melanie yates


Can the 'glamourous' perception of a 'tortured artist' put pressure on creative folks and cause anxiety related to their identity and job?

The night owls, the romantics…the artistic vision of the solitary genius starving in a cold garrett.

Whether these tropes are metaphorical or not, the creative worker is drawing on emotion and visualisation. A raw torrent bound to them with the love of creation. An ability to make new combinations and a source of cultural achievement.


What’s in your head?

Lack of Melatonin, or the hot spot of the Precunius churning out mental imagery strategies are just a couple of ways the creative brain might feel unable to switch off.

Adding in to this the regular workplace truisms of deadlines and workload create stress – a delay in a physical goods supply chain provides a ready made explanation. But a delay in the perfect creative concept is a call to emotion, obsession and perfection.


Mental Health first aid…

Starts with an appreciation of this. Though a creative role seems a world away from the stresses of the builders yard or hospital, the nature of creative thoughts is they keep on coming and coming 24/7 – Loving what you do so much that you do it too much and it’s hard to step away – and that is actually a part of who you are inside… The head that never goes home.


So how can we try to support?

The methods people use to cope with anxiety will vary based on their unique circumstances.

For this Mental Health Awareness Week, Mental Health First Aid England are developing a series of resources to support and create awareness for those living with anxiety and for you to use if you are supporting someone with anxiety.

An acceptance of the creative mindset and different ways of working – but without reinforcing the stereotype of the tortured genius – will support creative minds and their love for their work.

Find support here if you’re struggling.