Let Loose the Dogs of Creativity
Any dog, no matter how tame and lovable, yes even your own pooch, will, if deprived of food and/or water long enough, go mad. At that point, it will become and cruel and nasty as its physical condition will allow in order to get the food and water it needs. Dogs we love can reach a state of being willing to kill us, if it comes to that.
Not a pleasant thought.
Almost as unpleasant a thought is what our own minds can do to us when not properly fed, or in this case occupied.
As a creative on the Spectrum, not to mention someone who struggled at times with anxiety, I know what my mind, my runaway thoughts can do to me. Catastrophizing. Fear. Depressing thoughts and oppressive memories playing over and over.
If my mind is active but not deeply occupied in actions that require some degree of attention and thought, my mind will in fact turn on me. Like a dog not properly fed, that which is among the most dear aspects of my life can turn on me, and become destructive, if not utilized.
I have no science to back up my speculation that this can be especially tricky for artists and other creative types. But I can certainly say that my artistic creativity, in writing, in theatre, lives in or near the some place in my heart as does the deepest fears and anxieties. They are not one and the same, but like our beloved put deprived for too long of that which it needs to survive, the mind can become infected with the dark-but-unproductive thoughts. (Dark can in fact be productive, when channeled.)
Everyone has such times as I have described. For some, counseling or treatment are required to keep things in line. But for such cases, as well as for those who are not in needs of same, the propensity for our minds to become our enemies is a real one. None of us should ignore the call for proper channeling and stimulation, to keep the anxious thoughts at bey, (even if we cannot eliminate them totally.)
During the day if I am up, I need to either be free to do whatever I please, of be engaged in an activity/job that required the use of at least some concentration in order to keep those dogs properly fed. I recently left a part-time job which possessed many problems. More and more of them as time went on. But among the most recent of those issues was how much time I had to spend with the “hungry dogs of the mind.” That is to say doing mindless tasks for too long, without the proper stimulation. Brooding was the sometimes result, and it happened more and more on the job as other problems with it mounted.
Keep your mind occupied. Read, write, create. Play World of Warcraft if that is your thing. (It’s not mine.) Whatever you do to feed those dogs, remember to keep them fed regularly. It’s not laziness or leisure when it comes to your mental health.