As of late, creating has become seemingly harder and harder to do on a weekly basis. Both the Vancouver weather forecast and the final rush of the semester have both contributed to this creative roadblock. This week I was booked for a shoot with an aspiring young photographer, who currently goes to Langara College. We had plans to shoot a street/cityscape look, but unfortunately the weather wasn’t permitting for us to proceed. However, we rescheduled and I hope to be writing about that shoot in the next week or two. To fill this week’s post, I will be touching on some issues I’ve experienced that have also contributed to my partial creative hiatus.

In my last post, I mentioned that I left my personal life in the dust as I went on to pursue my creative one. This all ties into my inability to balance my own life. However, I specifically want to touch on how all aspects of my life differ from my personal one. 

I’m have a type A personality, almost to a T. I’m aggressive, competitive, achievement-oriented, constantly stressed and completely work obsessed. Since I started writing this blog post, I’ve been mentally urging myself to finish faster so I can start working on a presentation for another class. It’s completely sick. To be completely honest, it’s as if I’m constantly fighting with myself about time management when I’ve been ahead of my workload since this semester started. I’m stressed when there’s work to be done, and I’m even more stressed when there isn’t work to be done. I’ve mentioned before that I’m the kind of person who requires a weekly schedule or else my life spirals (and we don’t want that). I was so worried about losing my weekly schedule, that I debated about taking another year of university just to keep myself in line. When I write all of this, I sound so unbelievably anal, but I assure you I’m not that anal and I can be fun. 

I remember last April I asked my amazing friend, Gary Mo (@yuen.wm) if I should “full send” on my creative life. I was nearing the end of my six course semester, and I felt like I was finally ready to pursue a creative personality online- at this time I had only participated in a handful of shoots. He reminded me that I was unbelievably young and asked me, “what’s the worst that could happen?” With Gary’s blessing, I dipped my toes into the creative industry, but it wasn’t until July that I decided to completely “full send” and immerse myself with other creatives. Luckily, hard work and determination paid off which has allowed me to continue pursuing this goal well into the fall. Since then, I’ve been jumping head first ever since. 

Sometimes I wish I had more of a carefree personality, and told myself “yes” more often. For example: I recently had course selections and the morning of, the internet went out throughout the entire SFU residences. I ran out the door after a hasty shower and cried on the floor of West Mall Center. I’m not someone who cries regularly or ever, so when it happened over something as little as a failed wifi connection, I knew I had been pushing myself to my absolute limit. My course cart was filled with another six classes, and believe me, even in that moment, I had no problem saying yes to my decision. I’ve never once doubted my ability to succeed in school, and the only reason for that is because I put everything and anything behind my education. However, I know for a fact, that much like my meltdown in WMC, that I’m going to go into Spring semester head strong and then somewhere around week six it’ll take a toll on me and I’ll push myself beyond relief to finish. This is the kind of “yes” I wish I didn’t use which leads me to ask myself why can’t I say yes to anything in relation to my personal life?

I’ve spent far too much time asking myself this question and pondering the answer. I’ve come to many conclusions, but I believe that I’ve spent the majority of my life in a rush. I’m in a rush to live. In my mind, living is finishing school, but then what? I’ve been rushing through university so fast that I’m going to walk by the AQ pond, look down and stare at my reflection asking myself if I’m ready to enter the real world. In reality, living isn’t about always being in a rush, it’s about making mistakes, making memories and having stories to tell. By always being in a rush to start “living my life” I will have completely missed the mark before I graduate. 

Basically, I want to see myself pressing the “full send” button on my personal life more often. I’ve never allowed myself to because I’ve exerted all my time and energy on both my education and my creative works. So much so that it consumes me to the point where there are times when I’m not even enjoying what I’m doing anymore which is why I’ve experienced my recent creative hiatus. My “full send” example is one that has spoken to be since a very young age and it’s important because it ties into my final point. 

I remember watching Halloweentown as a kid, which is about two different worlds that collide. One world is the real world and the other is the universe that Halloweentown resides in which is full of monsters and magic. The main character, Marnie discovers that she’s a witch and runs off to Halloweentown to pursue her studies. There, she meets her grandmother, Aggie who is also a witch and teaches her the ropes. Specifically, there was a scene where Aggie buys Marnie her first broom and Marnie asks how to fly it. Aggie turns to her and says, “All you have to do is want something, and then let yourself have it!”

A friend mentioned to me the other day that if I didn’t properly balance out my life, it would take a toll on my creative presence (it already has). If I lose interest in what I’m doing, then so will others, and neither of which are my goals. My problem is that no matter what I choose to do in life, I will do it until it’s done but there is an entire life to be lived outside one’s goals, or at least I like to believe there is. I don’t pursue my personal life because I feel as if I don’t have any control over it, and that’s because I don’t make enough time to focus on it. No matter how successful I ever become, I’m always going to crave more from life than just that. Sure, my creative life can be absolutely popping off but if you have no one to share that with, then does that really matter? It’s important to work towards a goal, but to what extent? It’s not worth achieving that goal if you lose yourself within that. So within the next couple of weeks, I’m going to make it a point to take more time and focus on myself which will keep my creative gears oiled. All I have to do is jump.

A/N: I’ve included several pictures from last week’s trip to Hope, because I’m also very hopeful that everything is going to work itself out.

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