Enjoying Creative Depression


creative depressionSometimes I’m social and productive. Other times I crave solitude and don’t feel like getting anything done. Luckily for me, I’m in the social and productive mode most of the time. But when I get to the other side of the coin — that side that doesn’t allow me to even get up some morning, then all hell breaks lose in my mind. I say those feelings of depression, for a lack of a better description, live in my strictly in my mind, because life goes on. The world keeps spinning and nothing happens because of my lack of action. Well, almost.
When I detach from the world around me, I have no feelings for any work left undone. My sense of responsibility tells me I should take care of business, but my state doesn’t allow me to really focus on anything but downtime. This state comes about when I’m either in the midst or right after an extremely creative endeavor. I’ve already figured out that after a mentally challenging project or a stressful situation, I’m going to need some mandatory downtime. It’s almost not even up to me. It’s quite automatic.
I’ve learned to deal with this situation in my life by simply allowing it to take place. Whenever I’ve tried to fight it in the past, I’ve not succeeded. But when I allow it to take its course, it makes everything simpler and the length of the state a lot shorter. When I’m in one of these “moods”, it doesn’t matter if I have 100 missed calls or 2000 high-priority emails. I’m done. I’m checked out.
I write about this because I’m sure I’m not the only one that goes through this. At the very least, people in any creative industry must suffer from this sort of swing once in a while. Maybe some worse than others, but some, nonetheless. Writing and reading about it helps me put it all in perspective. It helps me feel as if I’m not crazy or wasting time. Because this down time is rather important. I use this time to put my life, both personal and career-wise, in perspective. This is the point where I plan, where I find new inspiration, where I set new goals. It’s almost as if it’s part of growing. A part of becoming a bigger, better, brand-new person. The same person, but better.
If you’re ever feeling the way I describe above, don’t feel as if there’s something wrong with you. It’s perfectly normal to feel this way sometimes. The only time you need to worry is if you feel you may do harm to yourself or others. That’s when it’s time to seek help, or at the least let someone know about your feelings. But if you’re simply feeling down and like you want to check out for a while. By all means, listen to yourself. You know best what’s best for you. Enjoy these moments when you have an opportunity to figure yourself out. At the end of the day, that’s what life is about.

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