It always lasts longer than you want.
I’ve spent long bouts of time here. Uninspired, stuck, feeling stir-crazy.
Mostly, it’s because I can’t see what’s keeping me blocked, and time and energy seem to be moving slowly. It’s like the color is all gone and you forget about what it felt like to run and sweat and have your blood pumping with creative energy.
But in the back of your mind you know you can’t just quit. So the antidote is to grow stronger. Put in some roots, dig in.
But where to start? Without the right tool or option to implement, you’re better off staying put and sitting with it.
So mostly you just sit, begrudgingly. Stir-crazy.
Until you suddenly recognize precisely where you’re stuck and suddenly…
You’re ready to bloom again. You can feel the color returning to the world. It’s time to focus in on your creative revival.
But, you’ve got to have courage here. You’re still coming out from the cold and there are still a few days here and there where Winter returns.
The art pulls you back: A newly inspired song you written in 30 minutes, a quick draft of a design for a website. The muse is calling, and you desperately try and stay with her.
Action is key. As is bravery. This is your process: act, keep courage, glimpse the past and then refocus to the present.
Like Dorothy and Toto, the other side is colorful again, and you’re off to a new destination. It’s beautiful and filled with new acquaintances and experiences all the way along a yellow brick road.
You’ve reached the emerald city.
Time to revel in how far you’ve come and what you’ve accomplished. Things are feeling fun now, and you’re singing again. You feel pride.
But at the end of the road, the Wizard is not who you expected him to be.
You thought the end of this project or endeavor would have brought you something else when you started. You thought you could finally just relax. The end result is different than what you had originally signed up for. It’s not what you wanted, but it’s what you needed.
After all of that, you recognize that you want a journey to experience, new friends, growth, stories, and a reminder of what you’re capable of and who you can be. None of which comes with a life that’s problem free.
So, although not perfect, you’re feeling at home. And you’re cozy in bed as the sun is setting and…
Then you wake up.
Was it all a dream? Am I still me?
Yes. You’re back in your everyday routine once again.
Days are passing by.
Back to staring out the window with restless thoughts about new journeys. Back to wanting change. You’re bored. You want to go someplace you’ve never discovered before.
Each day you’re doing the same thing while wanting to have something different and it’s all a cycle. Are you in control, or is the muse in control of you?
Days go by, routines continue, and after wrestling with your dilemma you give up control.
You let go. Which was ironically all that you needed to do in the first place, you just forgot.
And as you do your leaves change colors and begin to fall.
And the temperature starts to drop and once again…
H/t for the theme today from my friend Chris McAlister, who writes about methods for keeping yourself from staying stagnant. You can read about his model for how to make decisions it in his new book: The Stuck book, Pick this up when you don’t know what to do next.