My friend gifted me a handmade blanket. I appreciate the work in it, the care in it, and the love in it. But never more so than when my world was falling apart with COVID and anxiety a couple of days ago, and I was clinging to that blanket like it was my last scrap of proof that the world is a kind place. (I’m melodramatic when I’m ill.)
Creative people have minds that race with ideas and inspiration. All too often, they race with everything else, too.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who has felt like I’m in a lifelong battle to keep my mind under control. It’s like an untrained pet that races all over the house, knocking things over and generally causing havoc. But what if mind ownership, like pet ownership, didn’t have to be constant chaos?
Has anyone ever told you that you shouldn’t care what people think? You know they’re right: you shouldn’t care so much what other people think of you. Except you do. You do care. You want to be a good person, and you want to be seen as a good person, and that’s only natural, right? So how do you stop caring so hard?
About a week ago I had an upsetting nightmare.
I woke up with my heart aching, feeling as though this dream had been a direct download from Upstairs, if you know what I mean.
I believe that dreams can contain important messages from our subconscious coded as symbols, and this one was very clear indeed. Something had to change.
If you’re waiting for a sign, this is it.
I’ve been thinking about how we use language to shape our experience. This can be as simple as how you talk about ten minutes of unpicking – is that a disaster that spirals into a terrible day, or is that re-done seam a temporary inconvenience that makes the dress better anyway?
But I’m going to take it a little further. When Jessie commented on one of my videos recently she used the phrase “…with my anxiety…”, and I suggested that one very small change to that phrase could change her relationship with her mental and emotional health.
I tackle this subject with some trepidation – I’m not a mental health professional, and I’m perhaps veering out of my lane here – but I know this one little shift has been helpful for me, and so I share it in the hope that it can help make your days easier too. Is it “my anxiety” or “the anxiety”?
An article entitled “The Modern Trap of Turning Hobbies into Hustles” has soothed many creative people this week. Writer Molly Conway gives you permission NOT to make your creative passion into your career, and I support that sentiment wholeheartedly. Yes, you may create stuff solely for the sake of creating. Of course you do not have to “monetise your joy”. If you’re among the relieved majority, and the article gave you peace, then I support that. Go forth and enjoy your hobby with my enthusiastic blessings.
But if she sounded like a concerned parent advising you to manage your expectations and get a real job, then come with me, down the rabbit hole… because this post is for you.