I'm a bit of a Meetup junkie - both the tech and artistically inclined meetups. I recently stumbled on a meetup addressing creative blocks, and that's what is inspiring this post. I'm sure there are a lot of aspiring creatives out there who are blocked for any number of reasons. Some mentioned in this meetup group: stuck, hesistant and equivocal about creative expression, fear of rejection, too lazy, fear of being judged, self-criticism, not talented enough, too much going on, fear of coming up short, etc.
Well, what I'm going to do now is give you a typical running commentary that goes through my head when I'm composing music (I've been doing this for over 30 years), and then you can listen to my playlist on Soundcloud and judge for yourself.
My running commentary looks something like this:
No. No. No. Uh... No. No. No. No. Mundane.
Hmm, somewhat interesting. Meh. Catch and release, if it's really something it will bump around in my brain and resurface in a more mature form.
No. No. Cheesy. Ugh. Hey! That's kind of interesting. OK. Stuck again. No. No. No. Nope. No. No. No. Oh Hell no!!! That's never seeing the light of day, ever. E-VUH.
No. No. Trite. Drivel. No. No. Complete trash. No. No. Great. Not only cheesy, it's an earworm and it's going to be bouncing around in my head all day and driving me batty.
No. No. No. No. Hey! Hmm...
No. No. No. No. Argh! No. No. No. No. No. No. Man, I'm Starving! (pads off to the kitchen)
What is my point in showing you this? Simple. I have this wildly judgmental muse locked in my brain who holds me to the highest of highest standards. It's why in over 30 years I haven't had a great deal of output (plus my career was predominantly technology so the music has been more of a hobby until recently when I decided to polish the better compositions and add them to Soundcloud).
Are you really blocked, or are you being held to the highest standards? There is nothing wrong with being held to the highest standards. There is enough drivel in this world and we don't need to add to it. If there is truly something unusual locked in your brain, chances are good it will take a lot of time and effort on your part to manifest that into this world. It's possible you're not facing an insurmountable obstacle, you're facing the greatest teacher and guide you could ask for. So roll up your sleeves and get to work.