Winter is coming...but is that a bad thing??


Have you ever just hit a wall with creating?

I think it’s inevitable with all artistic people…especially in this world today where there is an ever-tightening financial strain. Lots of us are working really hard just to stay in debt, or treading water to stay narrowly above falling into it.

Because of this, oftentimes when we have the time to create, we may not necessarily have the right energy for it.

Forcing that inspiration can feel inauthentic. Unfulfilling. Even downright depressing at times. As if it is some last-ditch effort to reclaim a neglected identity. Cue the apathetic music…

The good news: there are remedies to this cycle.

Something that I have realized in my own experience is that I mask overworking myself under the guise of “working hard”. As long as I was really pushing myself, I was productive, and as long as I was productive I was valuable. And that’s what we have to ultimately recognize:

What motivation is our creativity coming from?

In my case, my lack of creativity would open up a worthiness wound, where I felt like I lost value in myself–or was wasting my time because I was not able to create. With other things in my life taking priority or taking most of my energy, I would often try to white-knuckle through and create from a place of desperation. Like I was on the last mile of a marathon.

But of course, this is not creating from inspired energy and therefore doesn’t result in much fulfillment, even with accomplished results…just a temporary snooze button for the anxiety to stay at bay.

So what’s the solution here?

Self-awareness. This may sound obvious, or even a bit ambiguous, but let’s unpack…

Ultimately, the big lesson that we all have to learn in one way or another is that no one is coming to save us from ourselves. It’s up to us to seek treatment or to come up with solutions to our issues. Being aware of what our issues are and what tendencies we have is the first step in seeking remedies, or to being on a better path altogether.

Recognizing a creative slump and the anxiety that comes with it is no different than any other issue.

If we can catch ourselves in the early stages, we can kick into some positive responses instead of spiraling deeper. Like taking breaks, reconnecting with peers, resting, getting organized, getting back into hobbies, taking trips into nature, etc. Having those responses in the toolbox is also huge in experimenting with resolutions. (I talked about this in a recent YOUTUBE VIDEO).

Here’s another thing, and something that I am learning now:

The older we get, the more we need to manage ourselves…and the more we need to be aware of ourselves.

This is just the necessary byproduct of maturing and becoming less ignorant. The more we know, the more we have to deal with–or cope with. We also have to be our own parents and this means confronting our upbringing to see where things are that we need more support with, or what our strengths, weaknesses, and skills are from the childhood we had.

Nowadays, I think one of the best skills for an artist to have is to be adaptive. The ability to adapt to ever-changing circumstances and situations that come with life is single-handedly the best way to have creative longevity. Right now is a great opportunity for us to showcase this skill. The season is changing, the amount of daylight is changing, and the weather is changing…oh, and here come the holidays…

This is the time that will make or break some of us.

But we can’t pretend that it’s a surprise…this stuff happens every year. So we have to ask ourselves, how can we be proactive and face this new season head-on?

Finding balance.

Adaptiveness is also awesome for being able to correct imbalances that will inevitably come with the changing of seasons (both figuratively and literally speaking). Because winter has us in the dark a lot more–it encourages early mornings and deeper rest. Hence why it is the hibernation period…after all, humans are animals too.

The ‘seasonal depression’ comes in quickly and I believe this is largely due to folks who are slow to transition from the summer and fall seasons into what winter represents. We don’t want the fun to end. We don’t want to be cold or to be back in school or commuting before the sun is up.

But all this does is create resistance to the change that is coming no matter how we feel. I slip into this when I feel like I have a higher expectation of productivity during the summer season–I want to accomplish more! Somehow subconsciously I can keep working into winter as if it is extra credit or summer makeup work. But when I am too locked into that past identity, I am not embracing the present one…and then comes the burnout and depression from the nonalignment.

Something that I was also able to recognize here was that I had a real lack of faith in myself.

That productivity pressure from my worthiness wound was also signaling to me that underneath it all, I didn’t believe in myself. I didn’t believe I was good enough, or that my creations were good enough and so I would consistently pressure myself to do more to get better. But what was I really chasing?

Something to make me at peace with myself. Something to prove that I’m not wasting my time. Something that would connect with others. Something that would attract love into my life. Something that made me feel whole.

Though it may seem counterintuitive, the real remedy that I was able to discover these days is that stepping back, changing the routines, and welcoming in the new season is the best way to adapt. Creating that new, balanced, lifestyle and identity that will fit in with the new environment.

So I’ll pose this to you: how can you adapt to this winter? What routines can you modify? What is the work you aim to do on yourself?

Comment on THIS VIDEO and let me know!!

Much love & stay creative!





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