I’m feeling a bit lost and hoping for some good vibes/ideas. I used to be a music producer, and eventually came to a point where I was paid to make instrumental music for a few different rappers. Once that was going on, I HAD to sit down and produce music and it essentially ruined the entire process for me. Music used to be my escape and outlet for the end of each day. Something to turn to for expression and relief. However, now it does nothing for me. I mean absolutely nothing. I enjoy listening to it and everything just as much as ever, but the desire to create it is no longer there.
I’m working on a PhD and I’m really not that busy. 9-5 is reasonable in my opinion and I rarely work after 5. So each evening I have all kinds of free time that I have no idea what to do with. I am passionate about philosophy (alan watts, eckhart tolle, and more) as well as moving towards vegetarianism, fitness (I do this before classes each day), and a few other things such as rock climbing and kayaking.
The problem is, most of these things either require a lot of reading or driving a few hours. Needless to say I don’t want to read after spending a day in PhD level classes and research. I also can’t drive two hours each day to climb or kayak.
The main thing I am trying to get at is, how can I target a creative outlet that I will be able to thoroughly enjoy and express myself? I know this is a big problem for a lot of people, but I wanted to see if anyone else had some tips. I can’t draw. At all.
“If there is a voice inside you that says you cannot draw then by all means draw and that voice will be silenced.”
Experiment with drawing, writing, dancing, singing, and so on and so forth and don’t worry so much about the quality, but how it makes you feel in the process and upon completion.
Not that you should begin with the end in mind, but see if by the end of it you find yourself wondering where the time went or learning things you never knew you knew.
Edit: You should dwell upon why music is no longer a viable outlet for you. I think it was because you were “forced” to, that you commercialized your work, you did it not for the fun but for the money/recognition/whatever, music became solemn where it was once serious.
I think you can find a way around it, approach music from a different way you then you had before. Think of how you can make it fun again!
It sounds like writing would be a good choice.
Or you could bake poisonous sugar treats for children.
Or make people laugh.
You could practice martial arts or yoga.
You could create a massive business buying and selling skateboards or something.
You could become the most accomplished internet troll in the world.
You could go on walks and take photographs.
You could get a really chill job and make creative conversations with [email protected],
@exit0music, what if you explored music in a different way? like picking up a completely new instrument, or learning a genre that you’ve always liked but never played. That could completely renew your passion for music.
I really know what you mean though about the obligation taking away the fun of a creative activity… I feel that way when someone commissions me to paint them a reproduction of something. I put it off forever because copying art is nowhere near as fun as creating whatever I want to. Then again getting paid to paint is pretty amazing!
I agree [email protected], I was very passionate about dancing, singing and fashion when I was younger and then I felt cut off from it for a few years. I couldn’t express myself. Now I can do all those things joyfully. I had to get past a lot of resistance to being my real self though. You can change the way you think about anything and that will affect your feelings about it so I would also examine why you feel like music-making isn’t yours anymore. @exit0music,
I practice yoga to connect to my desire for expression and then I do whatever I feel like doing.
Very cool thanks for the suggestions. I think the main problem with music is that I am always trying to do things that I consider to be ‘productive’. Whatever that means. It’s all subjective, but I think that’s the main problem. With reading I am at least learning a ton of new stuff which immediately impact me, but music doesn’t have the same effect.
I’ll have to simmer on this one.
Put yourself somewhere you’ve never been. Go camping but by yourself, go to a meetup or convention that you’d never see yourself attending, or better yet, search google for volunteer opportunities in your area and sign up. The point being, you can’t find a spark of interest or inspiration without moving yourself closer to a fire.
@anjelica I think you hit it right on the head. My whole life I’ve been surrounding myself with people who I find really inspiring. These people tend to be vagabonds who don’t participate in most of the norms. I have yet to find any of those people in my city, as most of my friends are elsewhere.
@exit0music, if you’re open to it, psychedelics and marijuana. After taking high school art classes I had no desire to write or draw even after my first trip as a senior. But after school and exploration into various substances I have put aside time to enjoy drawing again and I write daily. They have also drastically improved my outlook on life, social skills and my ability to intimately connect with various friends. Then from there you can ride of the good vibes and the simple enjoyment of daily experience will give a lot of inspiration.
I don’t really get why you’d have to make a post like this, you or anyone, other than having a need to tell people what you’re going through. It’s easier to just search around the web on your own. It’s faster too.
I don’t mean to attack you or anything, but it’s just so obvious.
Good luck, Chuck!
One design professor of mine taught unique ways of exposing creativity buried deep. My favorite is to pick a topic and write about it with your non-dominant hand. Keep writing, don’t ever stop, for a set amount of time. For your first time try writing nonstop for a minute.
Another exercise I found recently to be refreshing, try not using television, computers, smartphone, or any other device for two weeks. Obviously you’ll take phone calls and write papers, but try to limit yourself as much as possible. It’s amazingly refreshing. Every night do some journaling about random topics. Don’t try to make a point or worry about proper grammar, just write. Let the pen guide you- don’t erase, edit, or trash. Move forward.
Hope you find this as fun and rewarding creatively as I do.
Based on what you’ve said – I would highly recommend audio books in relation to subjects that you like such as philosophy or perhaps self development. You may not think about some self development books as being a source of creativity or expression, but I’ve learned as a creative individual that the subject matter gets me thinking outside of what is normal for me. Exploring perspectives and inspiration from outstanding individuals not only encourages me, but often brings me closer to a life of happiness. I’d also say give Morning Pages and Artist’s Dates a try for sure! It changed my life. Just check out Julia Cameron.
Hope this helps and have enjoy the process of exploring different creative outlets!