There are so many times I’ve been down, feeling beaten, uninspired, unproductive, and sometimes question my purpose and worth. This is part of the human psyche and something everyone experiences. Then, of course, there’s depression, which only magnifies those feelings exponentially.
I believe most artists suffer from depression most severely because we are passionate, and just as much as we experience the beauty, magic, and wonder of life, we equally see the hardships, ugliness, and passionately feel the pain.
We are individuals, unique in this universe. Though we have common interests, experiences, and desires, there is no one else on this planet that has lived our lives as we have. In MY life, in my journey of climbing mountains, I spend just as much time navigating valleys. For ME to find my way back up another mountain, I have to work myself out of whatever I’m struggling with, or I’ll become stagnant and slowly die on the inside.
I have dreams, goals, and things I want to accomplish in this life, and those things do not just fall into my lap or happen on their own. I have to fight for them. Part of that fight includes working my way out of the slumps I find myself wallowing through. When I can’t write and my mind won’t focus, and my motivation is almost non-existent, I buckle down and write anyway. Yes, it is shit and stuff I’d never show anyone, but it gets me angry, gets me moving, gets my imagination going, and eventually gets me back to writing like I should be. It is taking steps through the valley toward the mountain. I can’t make it to the mountain without moving. I’m not going to float there and the mountain surely isn’t going to come to me.
When I’ve hit a plateau in my workout routine, I keep exercising. In fact, I increase, change up my routine, try something new, but I work my way out of the slump.
When I get tired of eating the same things day in and day out, I don’t revert back to the unhealthy foods that harmed my body and mind because I don’t see the desired results, I work my way out by discovering new foods, new tastes, new textures.
So, if you find yourself in a gray place, neither black nor white, neither hot nor cold, and you want to get out – don’t retreat, don’t give up, don’t hide your head in the sand – work your way out! Do the very thing that has you blocked. At least give it a try. It might not work for you like it works for me.
Till next time,
This blog post has me thinking about a song by Lucy Spraggan called “Mountains”. For my friends and those I love who find themselves down... this is what I would say to them:
“I know what you’re scared of - I used to feel it too. You’re not scared of climbing mountains - you’re scared that you can’t make them move. I would move them for you.”