Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Creative Inspiration and the Importance of Fun

Not long ago, I was severely burned out creatively. You can read more about it in Part I of  'Who Am I and How Did I Get Here?'

Honestly, it came as a bit of a shock. I'd heard people talk about creative burnout, but had never experienced it, at least not at the level that I did last year. I talk in the post about how gray life had become: like I was living in a black and white movie.
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Anyway, I'm still trying to figure out what I could have done differently to avoid burning out like I did. Or maybe more importantly, to help myself once I got to that place. Instead I trudged on, week after week, month after month. I thought if I just kept my nose to the grindstone at work and resting when I wasn't at work (i.e. zoning out in books/magazines/TV shows) then all would eventually be well.

Maybe there was something else going on. I've gone through a big decluttering phase in recent years and during the time before and even during the burnout, I was decluttering like a mad woman. I knew on some subconscious level, that I had to get rid of the old in order to make room for the new. I'll blog more about my simpler living change at some point.

The importance of fun in one's life can't be overstated, though. That's the biggest takeaway that I learned through this whole process--that and being kind to yourself when you're struggling--that's key, too.

When I first started feeling myself get interested in things again--for me it was historical dress, fabric, sewing, and upcycling--I noticed one thing. It was FUN. So much fun just to learn without any pressure. There was no, "I must know this so that I can be more successful in my business," or any, "Is this going to help me make money?"

Sure, I now have an Etsy shop ... with zero sales so far. Go me! Of course I want to make a little money from my side gig because of my dream to own one of these. It's not at the forefront of my mind though.

The priority is once again having a creative outlet, learning new things, opening up my (rusty) curiosity and letting my imagination soar. For me, that makes all the difference.

How do you incorporate fun into your life? Do you find that it influences your creativity? Leave a comment and tell us, please. 

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