Sunday, May 27, 2012

day 22: a personal story

Let me just say: story of my life.

It seems only fitting to write about this vicious loop as I post my "personal story" 5 days later than my editorial calendar intended.  To be honest, reading this post actually brought me relief.  The loop he describes fits my life to a T.  I can't tell you how many times I've sat in the dregs of unproductivity, beating myself up for losing my momentum.

But it's true.  If you're a creative type, you push yourself beyond limits until you have little energy left for basic mental wellness.  And such is life, the setback comes.  I've found that the set back can be anything.  As big or little as the set back may be, the result is always the same.  It's like a balloon losing air as I whir and whiz into the ground.  Crash and burn.

Earlier in the year when I sought help for other stuff in my life, I talked a lot about what I now know as the loop.  My biggest problem and frustration at the time was not realizing it for what it was - a natural ebb and flow.  I just kept asking How can you feel so alive and productive one minute and just lose it all the next?  My therapist shrugged and simply said, "Inertia."

Inertia.  That's it!  It's all just physics.  I can resist change and remain in the dregs, or I can find that one little outside force (sometimes just a cup of coffee and a quiet space) that will move my creativity just enough for inertia to take over.  Because once the inertia kicks in, I'm on the move.  Of course once I'm interrupted, that movement is likely to stop, but if I can just keep it in terms of simple physics, it's easier to manage.  I can beat myself up for losing momentum or I can recognize the cycle, find that little flicker of potential energy, harness it and ride out the inertia once again.  

How do you get moving after a creative crash?  Does inertia work for you, too?
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