That “writing feeling” didn’t disappear overnight.
I’ve always felt it and began this blog in 2015. Up until a few months ago, I’ve written pretty regularly. Then, there came moments of “I’ve got nothing today.” Those moments grew into hours, then days, then weeks. Not only didn’t I write anything, but I stopped reading the people I follow.
Instead of knuckling down and stringing actual words together, I’d opt for a Quote of the Day or an entry in one of the photo challenges. My initial goal wasn’t to write a blog post every single day, so these fillers (as I call them) are a way to share other things I enjoy and stay in regular touch with my readers. But, instead of filling in between posts they became the main content.
It’s not really writer’s block, which is the condition of being unable to think of what to write or how to proceed with writing.
Good Lord, anyone who reads the daily news, interacts on social media, or wakes up in the morning has a plethora of subjects to write about. Between our own personal lives and those of the rest of humanity, there’s a never-ending supply of writing prompts. All you need is an opinion.
How to proceed with writing is simple: pick a topic and start typing. Sure, it takes work to get your ideas down in a clear, cohesive fashion, but there’s no mystery about the process.
So, if not writer’s block, then what?
It feels more like writer’s apathy; an indifference to the writing process itself. And yes, this is a thing. When I Googled it several links came up. This one from Ginny Carter at BookBaby Blog offers 7 Remedies For Writer’s Apathy.
It’s very similar to exercise and diet apathy, which I’m currently suffering from as well. The less you do it, the less you want to do it.
Therefore, the resolution is to just do it. (Thanks, Nike and speaking of resolutions, the New Year is just around the corner.)
Accomplishing a goal is always easier said than done; however, it doesn’t answer the question as to why it happened in the first place. So, I did some reflection regarding these past few months and noted the following changes:
- I started a new job
- My mom went into a nursing home
- I’ve become disillusioned with politics
- I’ve become disillusioned with people
Looking at this list helps me understand why I feel so paralyzed in my indifference. I feel less hopeful about life in general. And when we lose hope, we lose our passion and energy.
I decided to break it down into pros, cons & what, if anything, I can do about it. This is what I came up with:
PRO: A new job brings time constraints, but offers opportunities for fresh writing ideas. Working with youth gives me a different perspective on life and I’m enjoying the change. It’s also offered better wages and a more positive work environment than what I did in the past and that’s a welcome improvement!
CON & RESOLUTION: I’ve been through the nursing home experience with my Dad and it’s no fun, but I have insights that I didn’t before. I’ll be a better advocate for my mom. Fortunately, her situation is different and she feels more secure in her new living arrangements.
CON & RESOLUTION: While I don’t approve of the current administration, I can control how much of their messages I hear. Therefore, I’ve decided to limit my exposure to social media and disreputable news sites. I believe there’s a happy medium to staying informed without being sucked into the vitriol that thrives on those platforms. I can do things to advance my own ideas of fair government without giving in to cynicism and overdosing on hate and negativity.
CON & RESOLUTION: And people never fail to disappoint (not that I’m perfect.) However, I’ve always made an effort to understand the other guy’s POV. But, the total lack of respect and empathy that I see on display is mind-boggling. There are individuals who can’t step outside their own heads. Their mantra seems to be: “It’s my way or the highway.”
They honestly believe that their perceptions are everyone else’s reality.
There’s no self-reflection or accountability because most of these folks think they’re pretty darn perfect! No regard for the fact that there’s another side to every equation; that someone else may experience things differently.
And this very thinking causes most of their misery and that of others.
Again, the best way to limit the ill effects of these individuals is to stay away from them. Whether they’re family members or online trolls, it’s best to keep a safe distance.
So, I guess the answer is to always maintain a healthy balance when it comes to needs and expectations.
Recognizing negativity will prevent us from becoming invested in the wrong things. Instead, we can focus on the people and things that bring joy to our lives.
Just like a pilot or sailor adjusts their navigation in response to the wind and sea we must make adjustments for the changes that occur in life.
And this should happen before the paralyzing apathy takes over.
Well, it appears that I’ve answered my question, started a New Year’s resolutions list, and written a blog post…talk about making up for lost time!
I’m not the first person to experience a loss of artistic passion. If you have any helpful tips to prevent or resolve creative apathy please share in the comments.
Now that I’ve rediscovered the writing feeling, I better tackle that diet/exercise apathy next! 😉