I’m going to preface this blog with something of an apology: this article probably won’t be particularly good in any sense of the word. It’ll probably be a little rambly, a little incoherent, and largely redundant. But it will be something, and at the end of the day, that’s all I’m really hoping it will be.
As most people in North America and Western Europe know (and I only specify because I’ve noticed someone from both India and Laos have been tuning in on a semi-regular basis; hi, by the way!), the holidays that strangle December are something of a mad dash to get all the things done. I can scarcely think of a single line of work that isn’t swamped with too much to do before the end of the calendar and fiscal year. The insanity of trying to get everything done for those ambiguous holidays is an all too familiar sensation.
Much like many others, I felt the squeeze of time in the school programs I was in. Exams were coming up, things were due, and I was starting a new part-time job. Throw into the mix a worsening mental health condition (as always happens around that time of year for reasons that I’ll delve into another time), I found myself with less and less energy to put towards creating. Anything, really.
Well, I’ve been mostly absent from this site for a few weeks now and it’s about time I started getting back into doing things like I’m supposed to. Following through on obligations, completing projects, returning to old outlets that I haven’t updated in far too long; the usual mess of things. And the first step to that is almost always the hardest: resuming that momentum that was lost due to apathy or lack of productivity.
In fact, this is something that pretty well everyone can relate to in some form or another. Whether it’s been getting back into work if you were fortunate enough to have some time off over the holidays, or picking up an old hobby that you’ve since fallen out of, getting back that “motivation” is perhaps the hardest thing.
But at the end of it all, is it really motivation? Back when I used to work-out (another thing I’ll be getting back into), there was a quote written on a chalkboard that I really liked. And while I certainly can’t remember it word for word, it basically penned out along the lines of: “Motivation is the lazy person’s excuse. What you need is discipline to get it done when you have no motivation.”
It’s a pretty powerful message, and can be applied to most situations. Most recently, I encountered such a sensation when I was grinding away at my NaNoWriMo project (more on that another time) and after two weeks of hard writing, I was losing all sense of motivation to write. But, I HAD to write: to get something down even when I didn’t feel like it. True, reading back to those forced passages I wouldn’t consider it to be my finest work, but it was at least something. Something seems to almost always be better than nothing, or at least in cases where my creative writing and other similar branched projects are concerned.
And here’s the real bonus in those forced passages: I can change them. I can go back, polish it up until it reads a hella lot better and then carry on. Because I pushed myself to get it done, there is at least something resembling frame-work to build off of. And that’s a huge relief in and of itself.
This sense of just getting it done is something I need to turn my energies back towards in many things, and so I shall be doing so. To sit down and just start working on it again, even if I don’t really feel like it. As such, you’ll be seeing a return of regularly updated Station 85 nonsense, as well as a return of Whyte Gears Articles (the latter if not next Friday, then the one following).
Besides, there’s a small mountain of work I’ve been putting off for far too long: it’s time to stop wasting time and start spending it.