When was the last time you felt down? Feeling down as in feeling depressed and sort of hopeless? It happens to all of us, but we all have jobs and projects that may require us to be peppy, upbeat, “happy” and the scariest thing… be creative.

Creativity comes from a happy place. Yes, many great poems and songs are written out of heartbreak but truly great art comes out of joy and bliss. So when you are depressed, how are you supposed to create good art? Good writing? Good music? Good work?

Since I’m working on the my #WriteEveryday project, I’ve set myself the task to write everyday. It feels awkward for me to be all emo in this blog post but I’m admitting that I’m not feeling the most upbeat at the moment. Actually, I’ve been kind of depressed all day. My sense of optimism is gone. But my #WriteEveryday project is still on. So I must write.

Creative writing when depressed

Depression is a low vibe emotion. According to this emotional scale below, it is the lowest vibration of energy and emotion.

emotional-scale

I have no idea what the original source of this is, so if you know, please tell me. I was introduced to it for the first time by Liz Green, one of the very first ladies who I coached with in the beginning of my journey on the spiritual path.

Here are my tips to channel your depression into creative writing.

Turn your depression into anger that is fuel in your belly

According to the emotional scale above, anger is two steps higher than depression. Anger is not a positive emotion, obviously, and I am not promoting being angry all the time. But in this situation, anger is a higher vibration compared to depression.

So turn your sadness into rage. 

Put on your bass-boosting headphones, hit up Soundcloud and put on a high BPM mix like this Major Lazer one. Take your sadness and push it up two notches so it hits your belly like fuel that gets your fingers moving on that keyboard.

Set yourself on a timer

Give yourself a time limit to sulk. Seriously, set an alarm or a pomodoro timer. During your sulk time, mope as much as you want. Browse through old photos on your external harddrive to your heart’s content and cry over your ex. But the moment the timer goes off, it’s time to get to work. Set the timer again, this time to rage! See the first tip above.

Pretend you are someone else giving yourself advice

I use this trick all the time, in 80% of my blog posts. I pretend I’m giving my 24 year old self advice. Turns out that sometimes my 30 year old needs advice too.

When you are feeling down and can’t imagine how you could possibly help someone else right now, because you feel so helpless, well, help yourself first.

Help yourself first. 

Write the exact piece of creative writing that you really could use right now. Write the words that will help you first.

help yourself first airplane oxygen mask

I used to tell this to people I used to life coach, you see, when you are not emotionally well, then your relationship will suffer so much. You end up doing so much damage to your relationship when you don’t take care of your needs first. How are you supposed to take care of someone else, the unit of a relationship and the shared life you have with your partner when your needs aren’t met?

It’s the same concept here, in the case of depression and creative writing.

When you are feeling sad but still have to get your writing done, write for you. Write for the depresso, sad, blue, emo version of you. Then you will be able write creativity even when you are feeling depressed.

I just did.

Love you, my writer friend.

Ritu

Image source: The Visual Linguist

Author: Ritu

Ritu is an Atma Kriya Yoga and meditation teacher. A long time blogger and writer, she writes about personal development, spirituality, and meditation.

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2 thoughts on “How to be creative when you are depressed

  1. This Blog is so helpful for me. I am currently undergoing the state of mind at my 60’s! Your analysis of the situation resonates so much with mine.
    Thank you so very much for your write up to help us!

    Posted on April 3, 2015 at 10:20 am
    1. Thank you 🙂

      Posted on April 4, 2015 at 1:16 pm