Creative vexations

February is almost over. As far as I can tell, it has been a month of those days for quite a few people, and so I can’t think of anyone who will be particularly sad to see March begin. Except Julius Caesar’s ghost, of course, who will have to endure constant reminders of that one time he ignored advice and got stabbed to death by a roomful of his best pals. The point is that February, chocolates and candy hearts and overpriced dinners aside (or maybe as a contributing factor), performed poorly. I suggest removal from the schedule, effective immediately, replacing it with a month that has its shit together. Honestly, what kind of proper month only has twenty-eight days most of the time?

Tonight’s post was off to about five false-starts. Unlike yesterday’s, the idea didn’t just magic into existence; it’s still putting up one Hell of a fight. Suffice it to say, I am already celebrating scheduling my first week of vacation time, as I think I’ve reached a point where my sanity is questionable on good days and prone to scattering itself via a strong breeze on the bad days. Whatever, right? Moving on.

One thing I’ve noticed recently is that many of the walls we creative types seem to encounter are ones of our own building. This is by no means a revolutionary line of thinking so much as a clumsy personal revelation, so please be patient in entertaining me here. 

At a cursory glance, it’s easy to say that I allow the following items, in no real order, get between me and writing as much and as well and freely as I would like: work and work-related troubles, my tendency to take naps, procrastination, other obligations (such as chores, bill payments, and so on), hilarious levels of self-doubt, an uncertainty of how to achieve what I want to achieve, the fear of failing to meet people’s expectations, and more. Taken individually, and at face value, those are all things that everyone has to deal with (well, maybe not the crippling self-doubt in all cases), and they are all things that can be tackled…until they’re left to pile up. Self-doubt is especially tricky, because it has the uncanny ability to grow from a molehill to a vast range of mountains, blocking out the sun and any hopes of escape. Funny enough, this is the first time I’ve been able to articulate that without devolving into not being able to find the right words. I imagine that counts as progress somehow.

These problems aren’t unique to creative folks, obviously, so much as they are all part of the human condition. I’m just butting heads with them more lately as I find myself grappling with where I am versus where I’d like to be. My idealized self versus my actual self.

At any rate, I’ve sort of lost where I was going with this because my mood has improved a bit and I have, for the moment, acknowledge some of my woes as things I can’t exactly reconcile overnight.

Basically: keep on keeping on, creative or otherwise. It may not always be the easiest option, but it’s a whole shit-load better than just giving up.

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