Tuesday, May 4, 2010

A Constipated Brain

I wonder why it is that I stagnate my mind. Is this common? Is it a trait among...among who? Who am I? What category do I fall into? Ahh, among 'under-achievers'. Is self-stagnation a common trait among under-achievers? Just re-reading that sentence makes me feel stupid to have even asked it, and the answer must undoubtedly be "Duh....obviously yes".

I have so many interests and all of them really are steeped in art. I love sewing, gardening, writing, decorating, music, cooking, baking, and the list goes on and on. I love the creation aspect of those things...yet I never seem to get past the thinking-about-it stage of anything creative that I think about.

I am blocked. I am so totally locked up inside myself; how could I ever truly accomplish anything? It's no wonder that I've been on anti-depressants in the past...and benefited from them greatly. I realized at one point that I spent so much time going in circles in my head, dwelling constantly on an issue over, and over, and over, yet never coming to any resolution. I would just incessantly think about...whatever.

I went on a medication that didn't seem to do much but I felt a bit better, so opted to stay on that particular drug...until I learned the price. I went immediately back to my doctor and asked for something generic. I started Prozac and noticed a profound difference in a matter of days. My thinking became clearer and I was far more functional, actually getting something done during the day. Or, so it seemed. I lost my job and was so close to being on the streets, and was thankful to already be on the medication at that time. But slowly things started looking up, and I went off the meds about six months later. That was over a year ago and I've been fine without them. Until relatively recently.

I've begun to notice that I'm falling back into that pattern of thinking in endless circles again. The more time I spend in that place in my mind, the less productive I am at home. I have all sorts of projects, really creative and great ideas, that I'm not working on. The piles in my upstairs are getting bigger and bigger. I have an opportunity to write articles that I'm not taking advantage of, even though it's what I want to do almost more than anything else. I spend all of my 'free' time sitting in front of the computer (facebook, email, and Craigslist) watching movies, or reading fluff. I've recognized that I'm in that rut, but recognizing is as much as I've done about it. Until today.

My daughter gave me a book several years ago, titled "The Artist's Way". She said that she'd always viewed me as an artist and thought maybe I'd enjoy the book. I was so honored that she thought of me that way. I promptly read the tenth-anniversary introduction, thought that it sounded good and might be beneficial...and that was it. I never picked it up again. I came across the book again the other day, and today I re-read that introduction. I've had an epiphany.

The author of "The Artist's Way", Julia Cameron, talks in the main introduction of how the book is a course; a tool for helping people free, or 'unblock', their creativity. Just in reading the two introductions, I've realized what my problem is. I don't need medications. I simply need to unblock my creativity so that what is going in circles in my head can get out of my head. My brain's just been constipated. Ha! NOW I'm excited!


  1. What are you going to do? Where will you begin?
    Eating properly and getting plenty of exercise will help un-clog your mind as well.
    But really, what are your plans...?

  2. I think that it's not under-achieving ... but over-achieving.

    (*raising my hand*)

    Having so many great ideas and trying to think them through long enough to get them perfect.

    Stop expecting perfection.

    (yes, yes - i know. it's hard!)

    Something I heard recently - the Power of Intent. Get it going w/in 48 hours ...

    I don't really know how that works. How many projects could I start in 48 hours!

    Routines can help, too. You want to blog daily - or even weekly. Then you set aside that time to do it.

    I'm not a fan of routines some days - but I know they are a good thing to help retain focus. :)

    It's a challenge for me, too.

    Good luck, Catherine. :)


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