My body and mind have a pattern of behaving a certain way each year. From January to July, I am on an enthusiasm drive. Even if I have broken my New Year resolutions in January itself, as most of us do, I still keep working on them. Work harder, make plans, eat healthier, TRY to exercise regularly etc. August is my month to begin slouching. I fall from my enthusiasm for my goals and just give in. To nothingness. I become a different person. Autumn of my disinterest leading to winter of my discontent. Made merry only by numerous sweet treats that exist this time of the year. Why? Because everything else sucks.
Were human beings ever able to hibernate? It seems suitable. I kinda, sorta, do it anyway. I would not use any Psychology terminology in a pop-culturally disrespectful manner, but I will say that I, perhaps, have a bi-annual disorder. I have long, sustained mood changes twice a year. Mind you, I am a slouchy, lazy sort of person most of the year. Why do something today when you can do it tomorrow? Or never? And then, regret your life? Hey, it is pretty common. Which means it is probably just human to be like this anyway.
In June and July, I was immersed in blogging. Even though I spent a maximum of 6 hours per week on it, I thought about it most of the time. A thousand Of’s were swimming in my head, waiting to rear their heads out after a certain gestation period. I was happy. Yes, I can say that. It was pure, unadulterated happiness. Happiness, as a meditative state. Happiness, where every crappy thing in life that would generally leave me irritated just seemed like a small blip. Usually, “thoughts meander like a restless wind inside a letter box”(Across the Universe, John Lennon). But, when inspired, these thoughts centre and align to make a clear stream of consciousness. These thoughts become words and just for that moment, conviction feels like love.
Not all of this previous inspiration translated into fully formed pieces of writing though. I do get ideas for other forms besides blogging, but blogging has been first priority for a while. Thus, quite a number of Of’s are sitting as notes in my phone, intimidating me. I tried writing one on writer’s block and can you believe it, I got stuck. I tried writing one on identity, and that got turned in its head, leaving me confused. All that I have been able to churn out in August, have been the result of fleeting bursts of inspiration and commitment. Therefore, I blame my lack of professionalism on the weather.
And unlike previous instances, such as giving up on NaNoWriMo and Script Frenzy, blogging became an overwhelming fire that consumed itself. Okay, that is too dramatic, and we are hardly in the ashy stage here. I hope not. But, I was so full of ideas on how to take this further that one morning, I woke up, and it was gone. I still log in to WordPress everyday, still read blogs that sometimes inspire me to write something myself. But, I feel scared. Harold Pinter has said that when he did not write, he felt like he was banished from himself. I make it a point to write everyday, but when I don’t, I do get the same feeling. I don’t typically write “confessionally” though I try to retain some personality. But, more than feeling banished from myself, I feel banished from creation, from activity. Purpose, life. Writing, for me, is the only thing that makes everything else less overwhelming than it usually is. Where questions of esteem, of achievement, don’t arise. Even if I do it as a means of having a profession and an ambition, there is still something so comforting and humbling about it that it doesn’t need to mean more than what it is. And that, is absolute bliss while it lasts.
In that “stuck” post I was writing on writer’s block, I surmised that writer’s block, more often than not, is a lifestyle block than a creative block. I got stuck because I could offer no solutions, which would render the post useless. We all know the malady, but not the cure. It is way easier if the block is actually a creative block, where often sleeping on it or consulting someone usually does the trick. But, when it is a lifestyle block, when the lack of inspiration has to do with, well, life, then being stuck, banished, intimidated, scared is where its at. I am sorry, my dear reader, for you coming all this way to find that I am still where I began. Well, I did mention it in the title.
How do you get inspired? Or, more precisely, how do you get over lack of inspiration?