Over the past week I’ve written just under 10,000 words, none of which for my blog or personal use; instead everything I’ve been writing has been for school assignments. With that being said, the last thing I want to be doing right now is writing more, but as the pressure to write a blog post looms over me and I struggle to find the motivation to write I find myself asking the question: How does one overcome the feeling of being drained?
So while all of this writing for school has left me spent and bare I still have the obligation set before me to deliver something to my readers, but again, I’ve done so much writing lately that the sound of a keyboard is beginning to drive me mad. Now I’ll be honest, I already have a bunch of posts I’ve begun writing and are almost finished that I keep around to build on later, and I was tempted to just grab one and post it as is regardless of how short and messy it may be. Of course, I decided not to go down that road — the question from earlier still cycled through my head: How does one overcome the feeling of being drained?
Following loads of procrastination and avoiding my fate, I realized the inspiration would not magically come; instead I just need to show up. I won’t lie, showing up is a battle and it is not easy, but after having a conversation with myself in which I attempted to conjure every excuse possible I accepted that I must suck it up for there are no excuses. The desire and temptation to create excuses comes from a fixated perception of your situation, you must be willing to rid yourself of any bias and take on a different perspective. All that was going through my head as I neared time to write was “I’ve written so much recently; I can’t write another word.” I was pitying myself by recognizing how much I’ve recently written, but so what? Who cares? My readers certainly don’t care — of all of that writing what are they receiving? Nothing. So I must detach my writing for school from my writing for my readers because they’re not cumulative, they’re fulfilling two different obligations.
Admittedly, even with this realization taken into account, it’s still very difficult to show up and work. I had to fight the temptation to take the easy way out by using rough and unfinished material I have stowed away which after a bit of polishing would be presentable. In a sense I would have been showing up, right? Well, yeah, but as I began to further understand my situation and recognize just how tough it can be sometimes, I wanted to bunker down and elaborate more on the recurring advice from others that simply states to “just show up.”
Although I agree with the notion that inspiration isn’t waiting for you so instead you must first show up and work, I don’t think that touches on the topic of when you feel both emotionally and physically drained from doing something. Studying design full time in school is very demanding, but outside of classes I also have personal projects and client work. Most often the large amount of school work sucks the life out of me and my desire to work on anything else is reduced to nothing and so I continually push everything back. I’ve been struggling with how to find a balance between school and other work by measuring and experimenting with how I allocate my time and effort, which has certainly helped but it hasn’t really helped me emotionally. How can I revive that passion to work on the things I was previously dying to work on?
Finding this passion is especially tough when others are willing to sympathize with you, and so you begin to accept that it’s okay. When I told someone that in the past week I wrote nearly 10,000 words just for school assignments they immediately responded that I deserve a break. It would be so easy for me to agree and follow their advice, but what would that leave me with? An unfulfilled promise to my readers. Being average has become the expectation, rarely are you told to be extraordinary and defy all odds. In hopes to revive my passion I decided that I had to do something crazy, I had to be that person who throws sympathy and average expectations to the wind so I may instead defy all odds. Just showing up to work is terribly difficult, but it seems that no one ever talks about that.
“Turn your haters into motivators.”
Continually this phrase comes to my mind as I find myself determined to reverse my situation, but in order to see it in a more relevant light I’ve decided to repurpose it into simply fueling my fire. Either my situation can be an excuse so that I’m able to make an exception of myself, or I can use it to fuel my fire. Despite having written so much recently, I’ve taken on a new perspective which now feeds me the desire to now write what I want to. Instead of treating this as an opportunity to slack and take a break, it’s now an opportunity to let loose and write according to my own personal interest compared to that of my school assignments. Before I was having difficulty showing up to work on side projects because they weren’t of any real obligation, but I’ve been able to rekindle that fire that gets me excited to work on these projects because I’ve separated them from school. Showing up is hard work, but change your situation so that you can benefit from it rather than being dragged down. Fuel your fire.