I’ve experienced deep sorrow this week with the loss of a friend due to a long, painful illness. Through that process I’ve realized what a unique gift sorrow can be in understanding ourselves and our place in the world. I know that my friend would’ve been very open to a discussion about this topic—she had an enormous capacity to explore the psychology of the soul.
a feeling of sadness or grief caused especially by the loss of someone or something
: a cause of grief or sadness
: a feeling of great happiness
: a source or cause of great happiness : something or someone that gives joy to someone
Sorrow & Joy I believe exist in the same place in our hearts. They just feel a helluva lot different. I feel that both emotions need each other to be fully acknowledged, accepted and better understood. Thank you for this, my friend.
I will forever be seeking to understand the creative brain better. I have to, it’s a matter of survival. With creativity often comes a fair amount of SADNESS. It’s taken me many moons (I’m almost 49) to come to a truce with my own brain, creative process and THE BLUES.
Sadness in creatives is well documented and studied, however, I’ve decided instead of completely accepting this as an undisputed fact that I will seek a REFRAME.
THE BLUES are a part of me that greatly affects how I see the world and make connections in all facets of my life. THE BLUES are not a human flaw or always a part of a bigger mental health problem. They can truly be a gift.
Of course, when these feelings are systemic and debilitating—they need more attention.
Too often in American culture everything is about HAPPINESS, MINDFULNESS and INSTAGRAMMING a life of JOY. Really, all the time? That’s a lot of pressure.
I thought this quote was quite insightful.
“For creatives, this depression is what amplifies motivation to do their work better. It’s not enough to keep doing what you’ve been doing as a creative, you have to do more, and do it well. That’s empowering, if you can make it through the initial dip in energy.” —Tanner Christensen (The link between depression and creativity, and how it can be good for you.) The link is below.
The key is in understanding that energy dip when you are feeling THE BLUES and ruminating—trying to make sense of something. Today is a good example after another, all too common, senseless shooting in America. How can we not ruminate?
My REFRAME about my own version of THE BLUES is two fold:
—I’m not going to knock THE BLUES back when it comes to my creative work.
I’m going to welcome them with open arms, a cup of tea and a nap if needed.
I’m going to thank THE BLUES for helping me make sense of this complex world
and for giving my work and thoughts more depth.
—I’m CHOOSING to celebrate the fact that I have a lot of creative ideas for projects and try to not get THE BLUES that I can’t possibly manifest them all. After all there’s only 24 hours in the day…damn it!
That is my reframe of THE BLUES and it’s working for me right now. Perhaps next time you’re feeling THE BLUES creeping in you can give them a hug and ask them what you’re suppose to be paying attention to right now. The answer might surprise you.