Being an Independent Creative (4/4): It’s OK to Want a Break

Every so often we simply need a break. We need to take a step back and re-evaluate things. Sometimes this is a choice. We take ourselves on holiday and cut ourselves off from our everyday surroundings. Sometimes though this isn’t an option, we plummet downwards until eventually our brain subconsciously decides for us “STOP”, this is when too much is simply too much, and your body will take control in possibly the most horrible ways it can think of. It’s important to recognise these times before they arrive and make a decision to take a break. Choose to do this yourself don’t wait for your body to force you into it.

Taking a break to re-evaluate helps yourself and those around you. Unfortunately though being an independent creative can mean that you have to come to this realisation on your own rather than with others, and this can be difficult; REALLY difficult.

Often we want to succeed and do well, we want to achieve what we have set out to achieve and do what we believe others expect us to do, but unless those achievements are truly our own passion and what we want to do we’ll subconsciously sabotage ourselves and those around us. I’m not of the opinion that we should ever change ourselves for others but I certainly believe that we should make a decision to change if it could be affecting others as well as ourselves. It’s unfair to take others down or slow somebody else if we’re doing the same thing to ourselves, but it’s OK to ask for help. Most will understand and support you.

Take a break, ask for help. You may be surprised that despite being independent that there are others around you who have either been, or are going through the same thing as you.

Creative Depression (4/4): Find Help For Your Personal Battle

“Breaking through depression can be a very positive experience…”

Depression covers many feelings that through my own experience I would never want anyone else to feel, but at the same time it’s these feelings that make us all human. Breaking through depression can be a very positive experience when taken on in the right manner, but you need to remember to ask for help.

Depression is a very personal thing and it can of course be spoken about with others but speaking rarely leads to the real truths in order to ‘fix’ it. Said truths can simply be too hard to understand by another, or sometimes they may seem fickle or lead to a misunderstanding of the cause or seriousness of the depression. Sometimes it be so convoluted and intricate that there can’t be any understanding due to the ever changing mind-map of someones brain, it can often be hard to summarise thoughts correctly in order to tell someone about them and It takes a very smart mind to do so; this means that we don’t often speak truthfully and openly about depression. We put a mask on in order to hide it, make excuses, or simply not recognise it at all. We don’t want attention but sometimes we need to reach out for a hand in order to gain a better understanding.

“Depression is a personal battles that we fight with every weapon we can get our hands on…”

I often say to people that I like to read a lot of self help books, and this is probably why I write in the way that I do. The reason I read self help is simply for advice. 75% of that advice could be utter nonsense that doesn’t relate to me, but 25% might ring true, and lead to a self revelation that can help me to move forward. Depression is a personal battles that we fight with every weapon we can get our hands on, personally self help enables me to fight that battle perhaps in a way a pill might help another.

Ask for help in your field of work or study, as it’s common that the battles you’re facing have been fought by others in a similar way, but maybe only 25% of their experience is relevant to yours. At least you can take that 25% to ensure you make your own better.

I have no training in Clinical Depression, and these articles or any other I write are not done via official research into the subject, but simply a personal opinion on how depression can often relate to creative people.

Creative Depression (3/4): Recognise Your Achievements, Overcome and Adapt

“Each time we create we create something beautiful…”

At the end of the day, we are trying to dull a sense of failure. In order to do this, we have to understand what failure truly is. We also have to recognise that we are not failures in the common world. Each time we create we create something beautiful even though we may not see it through our own eyes; we have to learn to understand it in this manner.

A helpful way to dull the sense of failure for myself, is simply to write down my achievements. Perhaps I’ll look at the past week, month or year. Write everything down that you have achieved; and I mean everything. Nine times out of ten I’ll be astonished. I would have forgotten about certain things that perhaps before I hadn’t considered to be achievements, or maybe I forgot I had achieved something within the time frame set.

“…make a decision to ensure you don’t fail…”

It’s best to recognise your achievements to overcome any sense of failure. Think about your own wellbeing, your future and who you are and what you want to be. If we consider failure too much we’ll end up spiralling down again. It helps to understand that if something has gone wrong and you genuinely feel that you have failed then it is so, but make a decision to ensure you don’t fail again in the future; be selfish.

I’m being openly honest by saying that in order to rid a any sense of failure for the future, we have to be selfish. No one should have to suffer through depression, and if you are suffering with depression then there’s only one person who truly can help you to get out of it, and that is yourself. We may often try to fix the past but why not think about how you can fix the future instead?

So this is what I’d like you to do…

1. Get a pen and paper

2. Write down your achievements for the past year

3. Make note of the workflow you used in order to achieve it

4. How was this achievement made similar to others in your life?

5. Adapt it and make it better for the future

If you read my previous post ‘Life vs Creativity (2/4): When in Your Life Were You Most Creative?’, you may find that thinking about when you most creative in your life and how that relates to your achievements will help you to adapt your life in the future in order to overcome any sense of failure.

I have no training in Clinical Depression, and these articles or any other I write are not done via official research into the subject, but simply a personal opinion on how depression can often relate to creative people.