I have spoken on here recently, about how I have been struggling with focus. Of how I find my thoughts wondering off when I try to do something.
One of the things that has been really effected by this, is my art.
Since I was little, I used to draw all the time. It was my favourite thing to do, apart from reading. I would be reading and drawing my weekends and holidays away. But, since my mental health started morphing from just depression, to include anxiety, I found myself finding it harder and harder to draw. I stopped keeping sketch books, and materials just sat unused.
I got an iPad last year, and decided to buy an Apple Pencil to use it. To try and get back into doing things. It has gone unused. Because I didn’t like anything I made. I felt like any skill, I once held, was gone. I began to feel unhappy every time I picked up a pencil. Everything I made was a mess, it was a waste of time. I felt betrayed, that that one thing I thought I was good at, I was rubbish. With a clear mind, I realise that any skill has to be refreshed, you need to keep at it, to keep your skills up to par. If you don’t practice, the quality can slip. But my anxious mind tells me it’s because I fail at everything.
So today, I came to a decision. That I was going to try and draw one thing every day. I started with a drawing that I did on my ipad. Whilst it doesn’t seem very good to me, it’s a start. It’s something to build on. Start getting my confidence back. The good thing is, that I was pretty happy whilst I was drawing away. I have tried to hold on to that feeling, rather than focus on my disappointment at the end result.
I haven’t had any extra time off work this year. I haven’t needed to as my working week sat perfect with the holidays. It’s a nice feeling knowing that I can spend my holidays when I want to. But, although I haven’t had an actual holiday from work, I still find myself effected by the ‘down time’ theme of this time of year.
As a rather top grade procrastinator at the best of times, I don’t need any excuse to do nothing. But this time of year, especially the run up to New Year, it is natural to slow down on the productivity and just enjoy life. Whilst it’s nice, it can be very difficult to get working again when the New Year does come around. It seems too easy to sit around in PJs and watch Netflix all day, but the world is still turning and you can’t really do that. Well, you can, it just means nothing will get done.
As someone who tries to be creative either through writing or arty stuffs, I have to have some kind of discipline. I need to be able to coax myself into doing something productive, when I’d rather be doing something else. It’s very difficult. But with me trying to commit to everything I undertake, I am trying to just do things then and there. No more ‘I’ll do it later’. Later never comes around, so I miss my deadline I set myself, and then everything goes wayward as i can’t see the point if I have already messed up.
At this moment I have a wee list in my head of things I’d like to do today. Like, read a chapter of a new book, write this entry, empty the bin… just small aims that I can focus on one at a time. And when I do one or two things, I am up and ready to go. I feel positive, and a lot more optimistic for the day, or what’s left of it. I hopefully can find some kind of rhythm.
The writing and drawing that normally gives me immense pleasure, is not doing it so much for me. And it’s a hard thing to get round. Because I tend to feel uncomfortable talking about my feelings to someone face-to-face. I write about them instead. If that doesn’t work, I concentrate all my energy into drawing. And I can feel any frustrations melt away.
But, sometimes, like recently, the ability to express myself so freely hasn’t been there. What I write makes no sense, and I can’t focus enough to draw. So, in turn, I have to try and deal with all the feelings I have in my head. Which proceeds to either me over-reacting to things irrationally, or just a complete breakdown of tears and snot.
It’s difficult, and noone tells you how to cope with that. And it’s a hard lesson to teach yourself. The only advice I can think of is never give up. I can’t tell you how many times I have closed an empty blog entry or put aside my sketchbook recently. But, by persevering you will eventually crave what you haven’t been able to do.
Maybe surrounding myself with more inspiration would help. Right now, I am surrounded by mess and clutter. That needs to change.
Well, the last few months have been rather fail, in that I don’t seem to have blogged at all. Well, that is lies. I have blogged, just not very consistently.
As I have mentioned before I usually blog when I am feeling low. I guess it I a bit of a cliche of a person complaining about lack inspiration, when their satisfaction of life improves. The new task for myself is trying to balance these two things. Using blogging to relax some of the strain is great, it’s just makes it hard, when there is no strain to release.
But, I am going to persevere. I have been doing a lot of sketching recently, and that is awesome. It is something that I stopped for a while, but have really enjoyed getting back into. It also feels awesome, knowing that I have gotten over a creative block, which has plagued me for months. I am hoping that will rub off on my activity on the blogosphere. I mean I am even recording vlogs again. That is something.