The past weeks have been difficult and stressful for many people. The events occurring within our nation impact each individual in a different way, with varying degrees of fear, anxiety, and sadness. In these emotional times, it can be difficult to maintain your concentration and create. It can also feel senseless to care about a creative lifestyle amidst so much turmoil.
For a lot of us, there are deadlines we have to meet and bills to pay, so the show must go on. We don’t have the luxury of stopping everything to process what’s happening. That being said, this is a time to be gentle with yourself, as well as realistic about what you can accomplish.
The insecurity you feel might be fuel to get you moving on all your creative endeavors, but if that’s not the case, it’s understandable and okay. There are still things you can do to express yourself and find a channel for your emotions.
For me, my fiction writing has been at a standstill, so I’ve been exploring art journaling. What my heart needs right now is a way to create without rules or the necessity of perfection or a clear goal. When I start a new page, I don’t know where it’s going to go, which gives me practice with allowing art to happen without needing a specific outcome. I’ve also been working on a non-fiction project that bounced around my head for a while, which helps me to gain a sense of courage as I dive into the unknown.
These are just the things I’m doing, but here are some ideas for you:
- Work on your creating space…spruce it up, clean it out, give it some fresh paint or an organization overhaul
- Focus on something else, like playing around with a new medium where there’s no stressing about perfection
- Skim through design books or magazines
- Read…fiction, non-fiction, inspirational blogs (like this one!), cookbooks…
- Clean out your closets and start a donation pile
- Go through your digital photos and create an album…I particularly like Chatbooks
- Start a new journal…art, writing, travel, gratitude, lists…whatever soothes you
- Wander somewhere new, even if it’s through a section of Target you usually never stop in
- Light a scented candle and breathe
You don’t always have to be on. In fact, a creative practice ebbs and flows, which is why it’s a practice.
Not many of us can go full speed for months and months, let alone years, without taking a break. Some days you have the time and mental energy for one small thing, and other days you might be able to tackle more.
The key is that creativity is all around you and it isn’t picky about how you use it. It understands you might be scared and sad and anxious about the world. It’s there for you to lean on. Use it when you can, as much as you can, so you can face tomorrow.