January 22nd, 2009
I’m worried. Lately, I’ve been feeling uninspired and lame. Also, non-creative. For the past year or so. And it’s as if I can sense my creativity conduits drying up, akin to hardening of the arteries. Fresh synapses refuse to fire and I’m stuck on a track and I can’t even come up with words for things. I’ve never been dependent on a thesaurus in my life. Until now. But I just can’t think of good synonyms. In fact, I can’t do a lot of things I once did. I used to love to make up stuff, and be silly, and go on tangents, and create. And now it’s as if my brain is closed for business.
I’m forgetting things too. I can’t remember certain events that’ve happened, and then every so often, a random memory strikes my brain and I can see the details so clearly, but I don’t know where I was or if it even is my memory, you know? It could’ve been a scene from a movie, or a figment from a dream, or something someone told me once. Then, if I want to describe the thing I saw that I don’t know is mine or not, I can’t retrieve the word pictures. So the image just sits there and stagnates.
So worse of all with all this non-creativity and brain stagnation comes the thought: Maybe I’m not supposed to be a writer. I’d always wanted to be, aligned myself with that identity, but what if it’s not my path or my calling? Is this a turning 40 thing? Re-evaluating everything and not knowing how to define your life? Because it is unsettling.
I think I think too much. Or, that I’m very hard on myself. But then I wonder if I shouldn’t be harder. I go round and round and round. Maybe I’m mentally exhausted. Could that be it? What I do know if that I do the same things again and again. I suppose there isn’t new stimuli coming into my little world. I’ve fallen into a routine and can’t get back up. I say the same things to the same people in the same way in the same places.
Oh God. I’m just going to shut up.
Here’s my action plan I am going to enact (Oh good Lord, where is that thesaurus) to poke my creativity and wake it up:
- Listen to different music.
I love my Indigo Girls and my Missy Higgins and my mellow folk rock, but I think this same old same old music has lulled my brain into some sort of static rhythm. I need to shake it up. So, yesterday I downloaded music genres that are new to me. My theory is that by giving myself something new to listen to, my brain waves will perk up. Some of my “new” music includes songs by MC Yogi and Chopteeth Afrofunk Big Band.
- Read new things.
I’m not so much a politics girl or even a current events girl. I’m in my own teeny mind world so much of the time that I don’t look at what’s around me. As such, I plan to read material that is out of my comfort zone — including, oh I don’t know, more political essays from Esquire, for one. Also, more science. I’d like to read about science.
- Change my scenery.
I should be taking more walks in unexpected places. Go down strange streets (that are well-lit), explore new neighborhoods, look around. Yes! I need to look around.
- Take deep breaths.
I’m pretty sure my brain needs oxygen. I will spend more time bringing the good air into my system by opening my chest, expanding my diaphragm, and breathing robustly.
Definitely! I need to just sit and shut up. And not think. I think the not thinking will be a very very excellent adventure for me. As I meditate, I will listen to this song (“Meditation”) from Nawang Khechog.
- Be nicer.
I complain a lot and don’t give thanks. I am often irritated with my husband and kids. I pledge to pay more attention to this area of my life and to let the sunshine in more often. I will do this by remembering that I am blessed and to consciously choose positive words over negative ones. It’s not going to be easy at first, because I’m a certified whiner, but if I keep at it, maybe I can re-program myself.
Check back often. Hopefully, by launching my action plan, I will soon be able to write more engagingly and less thesaurusy.
Also, it’d be nice if I could become a better person in the process.
(pictures from here.)