I feel as though I’ve talked about this before, but I took a quick browse through my previous post titles and didn’t come up with anything. So…
On the Big Five personality test, I show up as a strong introvert. I didn’t need a test to tell me that. I can spend massive amounts of time alone, and enjoy it, and I get very antsy in crowds.
But people are born to community. In times past it was a matter of survival—still is! We all need other people whether we’re introverted or extroverted.
In the past, I could get my extroverting done at my day job, and I guarded my alone time with a jealousy that may not have been entirely healthy.
Here’s the thing: When I spend a large amount of time with other people I lose myself. Yes, I know how weird that sounds, but truly, when I’m alone again, I can’t figure out who I am and where I left off. I can’t get back into the groove. I feel as though there are bits of me scattered all over the place, and I can’t gather enough of the pieces to make a coherent me.
I come to the studio, or to my writing desk, and I sit, and sit, and don’t know what I’m doing or how to begin. It’s similar to ‘page fright’—a fear of the blank canvas or a blank sheet of paper—but it’s not the same. In page fright, you’re afraid of messing up. I’m not afraid of messing up the page, I just don’t know what to do with the page, or canvas, or brush or pen.
In early March I went to Ottawa, Ontario to visit family. I had a wonderful time, but though I’ve been home for ten days now, and itching to get back to my work, it wasn’t until this weekend that I was finally able to put enough of the pieces of me together to do some creative work.
There are rhythms and reasons for everything. This is part of a creative rhythm for me and usually it’s best just to go with the flow.