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How Robby Takac from the Goo Goo Dolls and Other Artists Deal with Stress

How Robby Takac from the Goo Goo Dolls and Other Artists Deal with Stress

When it is your job to create art and entertainment everyday people, it can be downright stressful at times to push forward. Sometimes pressure comes from the business end, as commercial expectations must be met. Sometimes pressure comes from a deadline or tough timeline. And sometimes pressure comes from within.

Regardless of where that stress comes from, a positive approach is often key to finishing the task at hand. To learn more about how some very creative people stay both positive and productive, I spoke to seven artists on behalf of Lifehack.org.

Robby Takac, Goo Goo Dolls Bassist/Vocalist & Founder Of Music Is Art:

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    I just try to remember that not every idea is the best in its raw form, but most ideas are worth pursuing. If it doesn’t pan out, there’s nothing wrong with just putting it into your memories file and maybe revisiting it later…and if not, at the very least, you have learned how to write something in a way you can avoid ever doing again.

    Lucy Woodward, Singer/Songwriter:

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      Staying positive can be one of the biggest challenges no matter how “positive” of a person you are. I can become the queen of despair when dealing with a difficult person, a rejection or an overwhelming wave of catching up on the daily check-off lists. I have learned that most times — and I emphasize most — that my state of mind is the only thing that can change itself.

      I change little things like eat cleaner (therefore I sleep better), relax a little (have wine and chocolate), hang with people who make me belly laugh deeply. On a deeper level, I stare my “blues” right in the face and ask why it’s taking over my life right now. Once I sit and arm-wrestle it a bit, I create a new relationship with it. But I have authority. It ends up passing through me like the stomach flu.

      Cassandra Seidenfeld, Actress & Philanthropist:

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        Living in New York City can be both stressful and exciting. In a place where it’s critical to stay on top of one’s A-game at all times, health and attitude can be amongst our greatest assets.

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        I live in such a fast-paced environment that requires lots of juggling such as juggling schedules, appointments and time. In the frenzies of balancing life, where time is precious, the best center I’ve found is keeping a positive attitude!

        Keeping a positive attitude enables me to meet the challenges of juggling and balancing my life, because no matter how I get through the day, the way that I get through it makes all the difference. At the end of the day, the quality and effectiveness of it all depends on how I dealt with each moment. In keeping a positive attitude from the start, I try to make every day a great productive day from the moment I awake!

        Keith LuBrant, Composer/Songwriter:

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          For me, when I have a lot of projects in the air, whether it be a work for hire situation or a request by a publisher or music supervisor, I work best with physical lists. I can prioritize and schedule everything and when I complete a project, the feeling of striking an item off the list is like a mental “win.” This “win” propels me to get the next item finished. It sounds pretty obvious, but for me, physical lists work the best.

          Kurt Ralske, Fine Artist:

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            I try to remember that whatever is going on around me is is different from my internal state — I can’t control the world, but I can be responsible for my emotions. “Stress” is a sign that I am not allowing myself to enjoy the process, or that I’ve placed myself into a situation that’s not right for me. A small mental shift — like focusing more on the people around me — can work wonders.

            There’s also the physical side of anxiety, which is only a health issue. It doesn’t effect me if I exercise, sleep well, and eat moderate amounts of good food. I don’t go near stimulants like caffeine; I need the sustained energy of a marathon runner, not a sprinter. Sometimes I use supplements like magnesium and L-theanine for proper sleep.

            Also, putting away all the distractions, whether it be the phone, 895 cable channels (!), or social media. Some people work well with taking these breaks. I find myself down a YouTube rabbit hole looking at guitar shredding. (laughs)

            Marissa Levy Lerer, Musician & Technologist:

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              Art — more specifically, songwriting — is how I de-stress from my “real” life. I can sit down and write a song in 15 minutes, practice that song over and over until it feels right, and then take a deep breath. At the end of that time, I can listen back to what I created and think, “I did that. I made something from nothing. That’s like a superpower. What do I have to be stressed about?”

              I stay positive knowing that those bursts of creativity are inside of me and can come bounding out at any time. I can’t force it but I can have faith that they will come.

              Marina V, Singer/Songwriter:

                Staying positive while stressed or depressed has been a challenge for me all my life. But over time I learned a few good tricks.

                One of the most effective ones is exercise: the influx of positivity during and after working out is like no other. The hardest part is starting the workout — especially when I feel down — but remembering that I’ll be feeling so much better afterwards really helps me get my s**t together.

                Featured photo credit: Yamaha Corporation via youtube.com

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                Darren Paltrowitz

                Writer, Editor & Researcher

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                Last Updated on March 17, 2020

                4 Simple Ways to Make Boring Work Become Interesting

                4 Simple Ways to Make Boring Work Become Interesting

                Are you bored at work right now?

                Sitting at your desk, wishing you could be anywhere other than here, doing anything else…?

                You’re not alone.

                Even when you have a job you love, it’s easy to get bored. And if your job isn’t something you’re passionate about, it’s even easier for boredom to creep in.

                Did you know it’s actually possible to make any job more interesting?

                That’s right.

                Whether it’s data entry or shelf stacking, even the most mind-numbing of jobs can be made more fun.

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                Understanding the science behind boredom is the first step to beating it.

                Read on to learn the truth about boredom, and what you can do to stop feeling bored at work for good.

                VIDEO SUMMARY

                I’m bored – as you’re watching the same film over and over again, even though it’s your favorite one

                When you experience something new, your brain releases opioids – chemicals which make you feel good. [1]

                It’s the feeling you might get when you taste a new food for the first time, watch a cool new film, or meet a new person.

                However, the next time you have the same experience, the brain processes it in a different way, without releasing so many feel-good chemicals.

                That’s why you won’t get the same thrill when you eat that delicious meal for the tenth time, rewatch that film again, or spend time with the same friend.

                So, in a nutshell, we get bored when we aren’t having any new experiences.

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                Now, new experiences don’t have to be huge life changes – they could be as simple as taking a different route to work, or picking a different sandwich shop for lunch.

                We’re going to apply this theory to your boring job.

                Keep reading find out how to make subtle changes to the way you work to defeat boredom and have more fun.

                Your work can be much more interesting if you learn these little tricks.

                Ready to learn how to stop feeling so bored at work?

                We’ve listed some simple suggestions below – you can start implementing these right now.

                Let’s do this.

                Make routine tasks more interesting by adding something new

                Sometimes one new element is all it takes to turn routine tasks from dull to interesting.

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                Maybe there’s a long drive you have to make every single week. You get so bored, going the same old route to make the same old deliveries.

                Why not make it a routine to create a playlist of new music each Sunday, to listen to on your boring drive during the week?

                Just like that, something you dread can be turned into the highlight of your day.

                For other routine tasks, you could try setting a timer and trying to beat your record, moving to a new location to complete the task, or trying out a new technique for getting the work done – you might even improve your productivity, too.

                Combine repetitive tasks to get them out of the way

                Certain tasks are difficult to make interesting, no matter how hard you try.

                Get these yawn-inducing chores out of the way ASAP by combining them into one quick, focused batch.

                For example, if you hate listening to meeting recordings, and dislike tidying your desk, do them both at the same time. You’ll halve the time you spend bored out of your mind, and can move onto more interesting tasks as soon as you’re done.

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                Break large tasks into small pieces and plan breaks between them

                Feeling overwhelmed can lead you to procrastinate and get bored. Try breaking up large tasks into lots of small pieces to keep things manageable and fun.

                Try breaking up a 10,000 word report into 1000-word sections. Reward yourself at the end of each section, and you’ll get 10 mini mood boosts, instead of just one at the end.

                You can also plan short breaks between each section, which will help to prevent boredom and keep you focused.

                Give yourself regular rewards, it can be anything that makes you feel good

                Make sure you reward yourself for achievements, even if they feel small.

                Rewards could include:

                • Eating your favourite snack.
                • Taking a walk in a natural area.
                • Spending a few minutes on a fun online game.
                • Buying yourself a small treat.
                • Visiting a new place.
                • Spending time on a favourite hobby.

                Your brain will come to associate work with fun rewards, and you’ll soon feel less bored and more motivated.

                Boredom doesn’t have to be a fact of life.

                Make your working life feel a thousand times more fun by following the simple tips above.

                Reference

                [1] Psychology Today: Why People Get Bored

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