On Bouncing Back

Had a bad day? Fell off the wagon? That’s cool, but now it’s time to bounce back.

Originally when I began this post, I was thinking more about how to bounce back from a bad art day. You know the kind: sketches feel extra rough, the paint isn’t cooperating with your paper… But the more I thought about it, there are so many situations beyond a bad day in the sketchbook that require us to bounce back.

Whether you are struggling with your art, post-vacation blahs, or a depletion of confidence in your abilities, it is so important that we get out of our own heads and back into the creative groove. I clearly have suffered one of these ruts and couldn’t find the inspiration to write whenever I did find the time. I even found it difficult to paint and sketch because nothing seemed to work or I simply had no drive. I’d get lazy and choose to watch TV instead. At the worst moments, I found that my confidence in my abilities was so low that suddenly all of my creative ideas (even the bad ones) seemed daunting and obscure.

So how does one break the cycle and bounce back? I took these two steps:

First, I spoke to someone.

As cheesy as that sounds, I decided to share that as a full time creative trying to make my living through my creative abilities, I was in a rut. It’s scary to admit when people around you may not understand and think, “That’s crazy! You’re so good.” (Hopefully that’s what they think! Haha) Basically, having someone to confide in works wonders for creative ruts. Often creative entrepreneurs have no office mates and it’s in these moments that can be felt more acutely.

Second, I just started.

I started typing, sketching, painting, tinkering, planning. You have to just go for it and literally dive back in and work through the first few pages, scribbles, sentences of crap before you can get back to the good stuff. I think creativity, like drawing, is a skill that can be learned. It’s a muscle that can be developed and just like going to the gym, the first time back after a break is painful!

Time to bring out and flex your creative guns! The more you practice your craft, the more confidence you will build as you see yourself progress. Here’s the thing: there are going to be bad days in the future. There are going to be people in your life that just suck the confidence right out and if you are a sensitive person, that’s going to affect you.

It’s how you bounce back and carry on your dream that defines you…



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