Creative Fatigue

‘how to be creative’ is Googled 13,600,000 times per month.’

I find it a little surprising that so many people are researching HOW to be creative. Wow. Directions on how to be creative.

There are some people who would not refer to themselves as creative.  But for those of us who like to think that “creativity” is our thing, it comes as quite a shock when our river runs dry.  It seems like my creativity never comes at a steady flow anyway, but instead stumbles along in starts and fits.  But, then on top of that, when it seems like everything I write is exactly what someone else would have said, and in fact, IS–if I just take the time to Google it….Or when the song I’ve just written sounds oddly familiar to me, like maybe I’ve oh so accidentally plagiarized it from the dark recesses of my eighties playlist….or when I just sit there staring into space thinking that every single thing I could write or create would not even be as good as a knockoff of a knockoff–it’s depressing. I’m experiencing “creative fatigue.”

Sometimes I feel so creative, that I can’t stop myself from creating and initially I’ll think that what I’ve created is so great.  I feel high on my accomplishments until I share what I’ve created with a few people and they’re not quite as enthused about my genius and I come down really quickly starting to feel uncontrollably jittery, like I’ve either had too much coffee or not enough. When I’m actually feeling very creative, I have to stay away from nay-sayers, non-creative people who think that creativity is a waste of time (perhaps those secretly Googling “how to be creative?”). I have to find a comfortable space (usually in my car with the doors locked…I like the sunshine, but the sunshine is too bright for my computer screen when I’m outside).

Other times, I don’t feel so creative. I get “creative fatigue.” Everything looks painfully black and white to me and I turn into one of those people that is annoyed by all things creative. I just want people to cut to the chase, stop chasing rabbit trails. I want them to be quiet and stop supposing, contemplating and creating just based on what’s going on in their own little crazy heads.

For a brief moment, I understand what my non-creative counterparts must feel when they have to spend time with me–slightly put off as they politely humor me, hoping I’ll shut-up soon.

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2 thoughts on “Creative Fatigue

  1. Oddly I am more creative in front of a blank computer screen than in front of a blank piece of paper. Why would that be? When I experience creative fatigue, it usually expresses itself as depression. Come to think of it, maybe depression comes first and then destroys the creativity. For me, I have a need to be creative, the way others may feel the need to relax or the need to exercise. It is a kind of hunger or thirst.

    • It is the same way for me with “creative fatigue” and “depression.” Which comes first, the chicken or the egg…..My need to write has transformed a lot with the expansion of my family. For years, I was unable to write because “life” was so intense, it seemed too painful to reflect through writing.

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