NaNoWriMo: So The Deadline's Looming...Feeling Stressed?

Category: Writing

The NaNoWriMo deadline is fast approaching. How is your word count? Not high enough? If this is the case, you might be feeling a bit stressed.

If you’re not sure whether you are stressed, Richard S. Lazarus (expert) says that stress is when a person perceives that "demands exceed the personal and social resources the individual is able to mobilize," or when "things are out of control".

Symptoms of stress include: insomnia, worry, depression, high blood pressure, frequent colds, skin rashes, indigestion, memory problems, bad eating habits and moodiness.

To work out how high your stress levels are, you can take this test.

We certainly don’t claim to be stress experts, but we do have a few tips on how to give stress a good Ka-Pow! :

  1. Laugh. Laugh A lot. Get someone to tickle you if you can’t think of anything funny.
  2. Breathe in deeply (but remember to breathe out at some point too). Repeat.
  3. Walk or run to a quiet place, preferably somewhere with a view (up a hill- do not break into some poor soul's third floor flat).
  4. Read inspiring literature!  
  5. Drink tea with lots of flower petals floating in it.
  6. Drink two cups of water every now and then (avoid water intoxication though).
  7. Infuse your home with lavender.
  8. Dance wildly to bad 80s music.
  9. Go to Yoga classes, or do some sort of meditation. (Remember to meditate on good things, not bad things).
  10. Listen to some nice, relaxing music. Set your alarm clock radio to Classic FM or Radio 3. Avoid hardcore anything.
  11. Write things down.
  12. Make bread. It is far, far better to pummel dough than a wall or somebody’s face. Also newly baked bread is delicious.
  13. Sleep. If that doesn’t work, try one of those sleep inducing CDs. (The whale CDs are missable...think they might actually add to the stress).

NB: If NaNoWriMo is the root cause of your stress...we suggest giving it up. Not sure all that anxiety is worth it (sorry we are mentioning this so late in the day).


Megan Primrose

Megan Primrose is SBT's Writer Development Intern.