The Care and Keeping of a Writer

It seemed to make sense at the time.  At the beginning of the week, I was working on a requested rewrite with a deadline and helping my sister out as her husband is in the hospital after a bad accident.  Stress, stress and more stress.  What do you do to stay positive?

What do you do?  Naturally, a nonfiction author looks for facts.  So when I found the Coursera offering of Yale’s The Science of Well-Being, I signed up.  What better way to be happy than to add things into a busy schedule.

But a funny thing happened.  I couldn’t work on the class until after I turned in the book.  This first week, the video lectures only total about 15 minutes.  And I had to make the time to take a psycho profile quiz to help determine my strengths.  Although they weren’t shocking, I was a little surprised at the order.  My top four include:  Creativity, Love of Learning, Judgment, and Gratitude.  Once you figure out what they are, you are charged to actual use these strengths each day for a week.

What to do . . . what to do?  One of the suggestions for Love of Learning was to sign up for another Coursera class in an area you know nothing about.  That’s not super easy for me because I’ve already taken a number of classes.  But I found MOMA’s Seeing Through Photographs.  

I like to take photos and I use photos in my research but I don’t know next to nothing about the art of photography.  I am having so  much fun!  Honestly, I’m feeling more positive and happier already although I’m still having to ferry my niece from the high school to work and from work to home.

As so often happens in my life, this class will likely have unexpected applications.  The professor is already stressing visual literacy, an important area of knowledge since I’m contemplating graphic novels.

Creativity and Love of Learning.  Not exactly surprising traits for a nonfiction author but it didn’t hurt to have the reminder to do something fun that involves these characteristics.


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