Sometimes I get out of my creative groove.
It is a lot like flying down the highway and drifting over the white line into the bumpy tire tracks. Bumping along to that loud vibration, trying to get smoothly back into the driving lane.
Not that I ever "fly" down the highway.
Or know anything about drifting out of my lane.
But creatively, it is often referred to (especially across card-making/scrapbooking blogland) as a loss of "mojo." I have said it many times myself. "Man. Lost my mojo. This sucks." as I try (in vain) to either draw a character I like or create a project I am happy with. And sometimes I feel like that about this blog, too-- just loose the blog mojo.
I started to wonder today what is this "mojo" I keep loosing. Figured if I knew exactly what it is, maybe I'd loose it less often. Keep a better eye on it:). Here is the definition in five parts:
2. sex appeal
3. a magical charm or power
4. talent based on personal appeal
5. enthusiasm or motivation
Don't think this post is referring to #2. Plus, I'm sitting here writing this with messy hair, marker-stained leggings, and big fluffy cheetah-print slippers. I cannot speak to sex appeal tonight, people.
So, my "mojo" is my style,
a little bit of charm,
whatever talent I have- based on appeal to others,
and the enthusiasm I feel for what I do.
#1 is a given. It is what makes us unique. It's like... where the mojo begins.
To be honest, I don't like #4...but I am often guilty of it.
Basing my style or my enthusiasm for my craft on how appealing it is to others makes it feel less real. I am me. That won't appeal to everyone...that's okay:). I have to make a real effort to fight the feeling of "will this make others like my art/blog/person more?" It is important to me to have integrity in who God made me, so I consciously fight the need to find validation through likes, followers, numbers, sales, etc. I do not want to base "mojo" on my appeal to others because that is not where I want to be as an artist or as a person. So, #4 is out, too:).
So, now I'm left with #3 and #5~~ charm and motivation/enthusiasm.
Mojo is whatever charm or delightfulness I infuse into what I create.
How can I expect to have stinkin' mojo if I feel no delight in what I am making or the process of creating to begin with?...Some days, I just need a break from creating. I am maxed. OUT. I can't draw a character to save my life. You know, I have pads of paper filled-- FILLED-- with characters I have given up on trying to draw-- trying to make myself like:). Creating is done with passion and thought and time...all of which can be exhausting if always expected but never replenished.
And then it is called "enthusiasm" and "motivation."
I am excited by new projects, new artwork, new blog posts.
I am motivated by many things~
I want to continually make my blog a place of inspiration to others...
...not just creatively, but to my reader's hearts.
I want my artwork to be enjoyed by my customers.
I desire to create a business that has a strong foundation,
...so that I can build upon it for many years and in many different directions.
So when Mr. Mojo has dropped off my map,
I guess I am feeling doubtful that I'm moving in the direction my motivations push me.
I'm lagging or feeling overwhelmed or just plain, old tired. It is difficult to feel motivated or enthused under such burdens.
We've been sick off and on since the end of January.
The kids have had strep throat multiple times.
I think I had pneumonia.
Philly got the flu.
Phil and Niamh got a version of it...without the puking.
We have a list of "to-do's" that is longer than Santa's"naughty and nice" list.
A bedroom that needs a makeover.
Hell, it needs much more than a make-over...Sometimes I think we should just wrip that baby off the house altogether.
Phil opened the oven the other day to cook a pizza and found my stash of dirty pots;).
Our truck stopped working.
And then started working again...on its own. Which is weird, but I'll take it.
Also, I have our Christmas tree--turned Valentine's tree still up...hoping that at some point I can turn it into either a St. Patty's or Easter tree. I would be okay with a combination of the two as well. I haven't found the time or energy to take it down yet...so I just keep changing the holiday that it is decorated for. If I still have it up for Fourth of July, I may need a Christmas tree intervention.
And then...I sit at my desk or at my computer and EXPECT to have mojo.
Some part of me left over to put into creating.
When I feel mojo-less, like over the last couple weeks, I really try my best to fix it. Steer back into my creative lane, out of the bumpy one. I think women in particular have a thing for Mr. Mojo. It validates our work. It gives us that feeling of being appealing to the world, whether that is through our coloring, art, projects, blog posts...whatever. When our talent is appealing to the masses, we feel like all the pieces are in place. Maybe like we matter more. When it is gone, we feel hurried to get it back. Before everyone looses interest...before we have nothing more to offer creatively. That is not what it should be about. Everyone of us has so much to offer and that does not depend on quantity of projects or posts. It is about enjoying the creative spirit God gives us.
Loosing mojo is okay.
That is where this blog post is going. Kudos if you read it all the way to my point:):)!!
Rest. Chill. Get healthy. Take the Christmas tree down. Take an afternoon nap. Read a book. Skip a week of blog posting. Watch a movie or three.
And then get back at it all when you feel refreshed. When you actually have something left to give. Women allow themselves to be engaged in too many directions sometimes...pulled here and there...trying this...being that. We love being needed. Being depended on:).
But our creative mojo does't work that way.
It needs our heart.
I will remind myself of this often. Maybe you can, too:).
Mojo is our creative charm. It is exciting and empowering.
It can also be elusive.
When he is hiding out, that should be our creative footnote...our signal that says'
"hey--go chill out! you need a break."
So don't feel bad when you have trouble coloring an image.
Or creating a card, page, or project you feel proud of.
Or writing a blog that has some substance instead of just fluff.
Creativity takes heart and soul; energy and time.
We all feel spent in these areas sometimes.
Take a break.
Nourish your creative spirit with time away.
And we will all excuse each other for those momentary droughts in mojo:).
No need to apologize for them or feel discouraged.
He'll be back again.
He is good that way:).