Tiredness

I am very, very tired. I think my optimism from the new year and finding some more time to do nice, creative things has well and truly run out already and we are just arriving in March! Not a good sign!

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I keep promising myself I will post an update on this lovely canvaswork piece when I have at least finished the stitching… if not the construction but, despite being in the state of ‘nearly finished’ since Christmas, it really feels like every additional stitch somehow contributes nothing to the overall progress of the piece and perhaps there is a little imp sneaks in every night and undoes the stitches. On the plus side it does mean I have been doing a little bit of embroidery but it does feel like I’m working through sludge at the moment and areas and stitches I would normally find easy to work are proving challenging.

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Maybe naively I had assumed that the push from a new move and new job would gift me with a bit more energy then it has. Instead I’m stuck being reminded why moving is such a pain and how annoying it is getting bills and routines set up and working out where stuff is when you need something. I made incredible progress on the unpacking when I first moved in, spurred on by a rather overambitious housewarming, and haven’t made an iota of progress since then…

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This means that everything is still chaos, the floor is currently my best storage unit and I just occasionally look at everything that needs unpacking, organising and putting away, sigh, and move on with the day. I still need a few bits of furniture to really start being able to pack stuff away in a proper fashion but this part I have at least made a start on and ordered one or two pieces that are on their way. It turns out looking for furniture is a bit depressing and a real nuisance. While I think Ikea is surprisingly useable for the price, I suspect like many perpetual renters I am a bit sick of the sight of it but anything else seems to be vastly more expensive and just as boring. I wouldn’t mind if more expensive meant better quality but it’s horrifying how much you can charge for laminate and MDF. I would really love to find more antique pieces but time is something of a luxury at the moment and I’m not sure spending the bit of it I do have free traipsing around looking for things an inspiring thought. Any companies or recommendations from any of you? I am definitely not a fan of the whole ‘shabby chic’ aesthetic or probably anything considered vintage but I do like old. That, or something a bit lively and crazy – I just think I might go mad if I have to stare at any more white laminate or badly finished white wall paint!

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I’m sure the lethargy will pass and I just need to be a little more patient for the time efficiency savings that come with familiarity to start. I am getting a bit grumpy though with the sense that everything has to be squeezed into scant moments where I’m too tired to have much remaining enthusiasm. The idea of running off on an embroidery retreat right now sounds divine!

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There are so many things I want to work on but I am just feeling completely blocked. Much like for the house move, I’m staring at patterns, threads and ideas and just doing absolutely nothing about it. Again, this isn’t the first time or, I suspect, the last time that I have hit a bit of a creative slump. However, one of the things that does help is trying something different and I have been to a few interesting exhibitions lately and seem to have got back into regularly reading fiction. I used to be a voracious reader, and still do read a huge amount, but non-fiction and technical reports have largely replaced tales of Viking warriors and their war plans or the mystical world of a travelling circus. Be it books or art shows, I really do find it inspiring seeing what people at the top of their game can produce. Even if it is not my taste and I don’t like it, it is interesting to try and sit and work out what makes something great or revolutionary and that always contains a good lesson.

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So many things to do!

14 thoughts on “Tiredness

  1. Rest and recuperate and don’t beat yourself up for taking that time! Some of the larger charity shops such as Sue Ryder and British Heart Foundation sell furniture and you can often get lovely mid century solid wood pieces for a very reasonable rate as well as doing someone else a bit of good!

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  2. Having made a big house move both in terms or distance and type of house/environment (smallholding to smaller house in a suburban environment) I can only say that you have to be patient. I was ill from the time we moved as I tripped over an unfamiliar threshold and landed on a wooden chair. It had been an awful move (over 3 days) and it was all downhill from our arrival, as I had one virus after another for 3 months. This was followed by discovering I had Arthritis and had lost some of my mobility.
    Just over 2 years on, I am now regaining my creativity but it has been an uphill struggle. I moved, accompanied by a husband who didn’t want to, maybe you don’t have that problem 🤞 and I do quite a lot of childcare, so both these things have ‘slowed me down’ for different reasons.
    As to furniture: I have tried where possible to redeploy things and have restricted my purchases to a few lovely items that I know will enhance my environment. I have had enough of IKEA too but it is an expensive way of getting storage and there is a Blog that special arises in customising/repurposing their products.
    Moving house is terribly draining and stressful and that effects creativity *so* badly. I would suggest you just potter and don’t beat yourself up a out not managing to do what you’ve planned – believe in the fact that it will get better in time and try to be patient, very hard though that is.
    All the best! X

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    • Oh that sounds like an incredibly tough move and I’m glad you’re finally finding your creativity recovering but I send you all my best thoughts for getting through what seems to have been a really rough patch. Thanks for the furniture advice and for the solidarity – I have been surprised how big an impact it has had.

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      • Thank you for your kind reply. I’m pleased people’s comments have helped. I couldn’t think of the Blog title last night but it is ‘IKEA Hackers’ and they have some interesting suggestions for customising IKEA products.

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  3. I agree with everyone else’s comments on resting and taking a break. I wouldn’t worry about losing the desire to be creative, it will come back at some point. There isn’t some law that says you have to make something. The pressure you feel is that you’re placing on yourself. Why not take this time to look around you and interact with your new environment. If you’re feeling that tired you’ve probably got to much happening at once something has to give. Let the projects go for now they will always still be there waiting for you or better yet get rid of some of them. If you’re like me you probably have too many and it’s weighing on your mind. Clearing out some of that stuff will unburden you and another bonus is you’ll need less storage space. If money is not an issue you can always buy more down the road and have fun doing it. You can always do the Marie Kondo thing and ask yourself “Does it bring me joy?”

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    • Thanks very much for the very sagely advice – I’m not sure I am quite brave enough for the throwing some projects out as I think they’d all be lovely if I was working on them but I do wonder how much ‘shadow’ the unfinished (and unstarted!) things cast. I think some exploring and patience sounds like a good tonic.

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