creative resistanceSome mornings, I wake up with a song running through my mind. Today it was Bruno Mars’ Lazy Song – “today I don’t feel like doing anything”!

We’ve just had another Bank Holiday weekend, so perhaps that accounts for it – I’ve got used to doing nothing, and my Inner Child is obviously telling me that it wants to carry on in the same vein! Oh dear…

Do you ever get those days, when you just can’t settle down to work? When I first started in business, I used to have days where I felt so tired, I just couldn’t concentrate on anything. I couldn’t understand what was wrong. All I wanted to do was hibernate!

I’ve been keeping that urge at bay this morning, making progress on some urgent work – but I had to promise myself that, if I got a particular task done in record time, I’d allow myself to play. So that’s what I’m doing now! ๐Ÿ™‚

Why do we get moments like these, though? I think it could be one of two reasons.

Resistance

This is where we find it difficult to get started on something we really want to do, because we’re fearful that it might not turn out as we would have hoped.

Stephen Pressfield wrote a brilliant book all about Resistance, called “The War of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle“, and I’ve just started reading Nick Williams’ book “Resisting Your Soul“, on the same topic.

So, for example, if you really wanted to write a book, you might find that – although you’re excited at the prospect – you can’t seem to get started. You just don’t feel like it at the moment. And the closer you get to doing the things you love most, the more resistance you might encounter.

But I think there’s a stage that comes before that.

Allowing yourself to be creative

I have a tendency to chain myself to the desk too often, focusing on getting the job done, rather than on doing things that will nourish my soul and fill my heart with joy – even though I know how important it is to take time to “fill the well”, as Julia Cameron says in “The Artist’s Way“.

That’s why I mentioned the Inner Child earlier. This is the part of every one of us that wants to play and be creative – and it needs to be both acknowledged and nurtured. Denying its existence, or its demands, leads to frustration and a sense of longing.

Filling the well

Yesterday afternoon, as the sun finally broke through the clouds, I decided to go for a walk by the river. I had been watching some inspirational videos in the morning, so perhaps my mind was already attuned to being creative.

I visited my favourite cafe, overlooking the River Thames, sat down with a pot of tea, got out a notebook, and started to write an article. Five pages later, it occurred to me that this could, in fact, be the beginning of a book that I’ve been wanting to write for some time, but haven’t felt ready to write. Until now!

So perhaps, when I sat down at my desk to start on the first task of many that I had scheduled in for today, my heart sank – and my Inner Child sulked! All I wanted to do was write – but I felt as though I couldn’t allow myself that indulgence, because it wouldn’t pay the bills.

To be honest, there’s probably also a part of me that was thinking, yet again: “What would I write? What do I have to say?” That comes back to Resistance.

So I thought I would spend my play time, today, sharing this with you, dear reader, in case you have days like this too, and would like to know that you’re not alone. x

4 thoughts on “Today I Don’t Feel Like Doing Anything

  1. Jenny littlejohn

    I too am mostly inspired to write when I’m away from my computer, either walking in nature or like you say outside a cafe with a view. We know we are most creative when we most relaxed and I guess for many of us that’s not when we’re sat in front of our computers. I think it’s also about giving ourselves permission to be where we are most happy and inspired even if that’s not the traditional working space.

  2. Julia Barnickle

    Thanks for your comments, Jenny. I think you’re right – it’s good to give ourselves permission to be where we are most happy and inspired, which is one of the reasons I finally bought a laptop earlier this year! One of my other goals is to make my “office” more inspiring – specifically, I want to put a big photograph of a beautiful scene into a frame and hang it in front of my desk, so that it’s like looking out of a window. I might never want to move from that spot then!! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. Thank you for your post, Julia – this is EXACTLY how I feel at the moment. I know what I should do, I have a pretty good idea how to do it, but just don’t seem to get on with it…. Very reassuring I am not the only one ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Beata recently posted..Boundaries And Engaging ChildrenMy Profile

  4. Julia Barnickle

    Thank you for your comment, Beata – you are most definitely not the only one! ๐Ÿ™‚

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