Hey frustrated Creatives! I’m talking to you…
How many times have you been in a creative hole? Once a month? Daily? For the last 5 months? 5 years? I know the feeling… You are a dear, creative heart who lives for the highs of creating special pieces who then has to deal with the gut-wrenching, life-sucking vacuum of NO-thing being created either for a little while straight after experiencing the high, or for what feels like a drought that has not ended. Fine. I’ve described your worst nightmare to admit about yourself, what do I propose you do about it?
First and foremost you need to just create again. Now, before you roll your eyes at me, just listen. Go and create a bloody salad if you must, but don’t stop creating. Remember, not everything you create has to be a masterpiece, and don’t forget that everything you do is in actual fact a creation.
But we aren’t agonising over that kind of creation, we are talking about the masterpiece creations.
I found myself recently being so deeply affected by someone’s actions that I stopped painting for 5 god-forsaken months. Yes. Shame on me. It’s not that I didn’t know what to create or had any confidence issues, no. It just left me. The happy feeling I got just before a creation popped into my head, just vacated my being. Truth is I was a festering angry vibration of a being and so the delightful muse couldn’t handle my negativity and went in search of more fertile ground in someone elses’ imagination.
I ALLOWED someones elses’ actions (insert someone elses’ opinion / energy / judgement / observation / ignorance) to dictate my flow. This person is 1 of 8 billion people in this world and I allowed them to affect me so deeply that I stopped being ‘painting me’ for 5 months. Is that ridiculous? Of course it is! But its also common to all us creatives.
I feel your pain dear heart. I know you allow the influence of OTHERS to prevent your creation. Sometimes you don’t even know you are doing it. Sometimes you have been doing it for so long that you don’t know any other way exists.
Now for the kicker. Others do not know they are doing this to you. They are not intentionally stopping you, giving you their opinion to prevent you, nor do they really care so deeply about you that they have stopped thinking about themselves. No one, in actual fact, has ever stopped you from creating. YOU are the only one who has done that my love. You are the only reason you create, or don’t create.
You have chosen someone’s possible (not definite) judgement of your creation to become the excuse that you don’t create. You have allowed someone’s ignorance to upset your good vibrations, and you broil over how they may or have hurt you rather than just creating your way through the frustration.
You look at other bold artists and decide they have more talent or confidence than you do and it just shuts you down? Well, I have news for you my comparing friend, those same artists feel the same thing you have, but what separates you from them is that at least 1 in 3 of those chances they had to rather NOT create for fear of judgement or comparison, they chose to create and share instead.
Self doubt kills more dreams than fear of failure ever will.
I am one of the artists who chooses to share more than live in fear, perhaps. Sure, I may have spent the last 5 months in a painting desert, but I chose to create in other ways that were slightly less daunting. I photograph, cook, bake, write, curate, garden, decorate and love – publicly. This doesn’t make me special, this makes me a survivor. I am dealing with my painting desert by pushing forward in other ways. Like I said before, at least just go make a salad. That too is creation. Don’t become frozen. Once you slow your creation down you will literally end up in a hole with no way of getting out on your own. But if you consciously choose to make a creative decision in everything you do, acknowledging that fact, you will find your way back to yourself my love, I promise you will. Add chickpeas in the salad today? Yes. Roast them? Yes. These are creative decisions that deserve acknowledgement. They may not be a full blown Sunday roast, but if that is all you can muster, then that is what should be acknowledged and celebrated. This is survival through the creative desert.
One foot in front of the other my love… you will get there.