It happens to the best of us – or so I kept telling myself.
Creative burnout. Writers block. Loss of inspiration.
Call it what you will, but you get the point. I was feeling uninspired for – well the last year. I wasn’t feeling the zing with the things I normally did. I was sitting with several hundred (no exaggeration) books – unread. A blog – abandoned. A camera – saddened from disuse.
Once the decision was made and papers completed to take a break this past Fall semester, I was determined to find the spark again. I had no idea where it was hiding, but I was darn sure I wouldn’t be wasting the break I had. Determined to practice a lot of self-care, I set out to cleanse from the inside out. Clear the cob-webs we’ll say. So I spent time with family and friends – I laughed some; ate some; exercised some; relaxed a bunch.
The most important thing I did: making an effort to unplug.
I’m the first one to admit the importance to of social media. For entrepreneurs like myself, social media is a very crucial tool for growth and even survival. In saying that, it can so easily consume us. I’ve lost count on how many times I have been in someone’s company while their nose is virtually touching the screen of their smartphone. It’s first and foremost rude, not to mention how it leaves the other party feeling their lack of importance on their company’s scale of priorities in that moment. But that’s a post for another time.
I decided that I would make a conscious effort to dial back my social media presence. I knew it would hurt my business, but it was necessary for my soul search. There were moments when it wasn’t so easy. My fingers itched, but I put the phone down. I deleted the sites from my quick access pages on my laptop and instead picked up a book, caught up on television shows I had missed out on, and enjoyed quality conversation with tons of people through the holidays.
The honest-to-goodness quality of my days have improved immensely. One of my goals for 2017 is to read 52 books. Although it won’t put much of a dent in my giant ‘to-read’ pile, it’s a start. I’m pretty proud to say I’m on book #9 (not including those for school!) and loving every page.
Somewhere along the way, I’ve regained my inspiration and reignited the spark.
I can’t possibly put into one post the importance or absolute necessity of self care, but one day soon I may try. We all reach a point where we need to regroup, recharge, de-stress, or the like. The past few months I deeply enjoyed doing just that. Away from the comparison game that is social media. It has a nasty habit of sucking us in. Feeling sub-par seeing the idealistic lives of others, while we forget that our social media lives are like the 30 second movie trailer – highlighting the best moments.
So grab your foot spa, a delicious new book or magazine, the television remote or even the cucumber slices – close the laptop and put down the phones (mute the buggers!) and enjoy some quality ‘me’ time. I just know you’ll uncover a little inspiration of your own. Maybe it’s for a home project, a long lost dream that has lain dormant, or the kick in the butt needed to hit the gym. Whatever it is you’re looking for, you won’t find it on Facebook.
Let’s make 2017 the year of balance.