Friday 28th May 2020

Creativity has been a savour these last few days. In all this week has been a bit shitty. It really has, to put in bluntly. From start to end its been awful and I have struggled chronically with mental health.

Having a history with mental health, depression, anxiety I know when things are going to be rough. Three days this week I have gone to bed crying because I felt so worthless and purposeless. Like what is the point of me?  Now these moods haven’t been an issue for a long time, so given the situation we’re in, having a rough time with work, home schooling and a huge amount of stress, this was to be expected.

Rowan has spent the last three days making my life a living nightmare, he has not listened to a thing, has no regard for rules and it’s got to me. I have been soul carer this week as I’m off work- or so I believe. When your mood is rock bottom anyways every tiny thing is an irritation and annoyance. Basically, everything Rowan has done wrong has got to me, everything James hasn’t done has got to me and even I’ve got to me this week with my stupidly weak will and my quitter attitude. This week has been a ‘I cannot cope with life week.’

The way out of my mind

Creativity has literally been my savour this week. Obviously, I cannot go see my friends or take myself out to calm down, so art and creativity have been my go-to mood enhancers. I think every day this week I have done something that has eased my tensions, given me a focus to work on, enjoyment in the project and getting the family to join in.

Pom Poms

Two weeks ago, I made my first ever pom-pom. Yep. I bought one of those maker things and gave it ago and well did the obsession grow! Monday, in my crafting space, I spent the entire day making a rainbow pom-pom wreath that is no hung lovingly in out hallway. The focus required was minimal, but the relaxation and the no stress activity was very refreshing. The simple task of winding and cutting wool was not only time consuming but rewarding. Seeing a project grow into something new and beautiful with the knowledge of ‘I did that.’

Creativity

Planner customising

Happy planner is the only planner I have ever found that is continuously used throughout the year. Six months in and is stilled used daily. The thing with happy planners is they can be customised to suit you and your needs. This week I made some new dash boards and trackers. Using the trusty laminator, hole punch and a few scrapbook pages I managed to put together some new inserts to keep me organised.

Polymer clay

Fimo is so much fun. Oven baked clay in all shades of the rainbow, now with new effect like metal finishes, leather look and translucent effects well, who would’ve love to try their hand at this stuff! With the right imagination you can create anything! My creations weren’t that great (as you can see) I made two clips for my planner whilst binge watching shows on Disney plus. The morning was fun, messy and again felt refreshing and rewarding. I still need a lot of practice though!

Just doodling

Letting the mind take over and find what it is feeling and letting it out on paper. So relaxing. Rowan tends to doodle with me, his imagination ranging from tractors that can harvest, sow and cultivate all in one, to a planet made of a giant floating donut with chocolate finger tress and it rains sprinkles. Me on the other hand, I love drawing animals. I love animals so much; you can’t find something as pure as an animal or a new-born baby. I love drawing them, capturing them in their own worlds, wondering what they’re thinking. When I had a particularly rough morning on Tuesday, I collected my huge sketch pad from the craft room and sat and let my mind show me what it wanted to draw. The results were bumblebees and a stag. (to be finished soon)

Wreck this journal by Keri Smith

I LOVE this book. Wreck this Journal has been in my life for around 8 years now. I purchased my first in 2012 when I was off work with depression. Following the instructions on each page, I managed to find something to enjoy again. The simple task sparking so many ways to express creativity. I finished that first book about 2 years ago and replaced it with a new one, which I started today.

Boredom and being stuck in is a real mood killer, when you’ve been doing it for nearly eleven weeks, its bound to catch up on you. Today boredom got me. I was stuck for ideas and felt pressured not to waste time. I found my backup plan sat on the shelf and it has been amazing.

Completing a few pages, with James and Rowan lifted my mood. We had fun and Rowan got a lot out of it.  If you’re interested in wreck this journal, click here to find out more. To buy one click here. ITS AMAZING!!

Paint darts (creativity)

Finally, Journalling…

I have kept a journal or diary for as long as I can remember. As I’ve grown, Journalling has continued with me, the style changing with times. Now I mainly write when I need to. I record memories a lot, things I really don’t want to forget, but I also write about feelings a lot. Its a book with creativity licence to do as you wish! In this situation and the lack of seeing my friends, I miss being able to vent and discuss things. They’re my friends, they get where I’m coming from and I miss them. In the first week in lockdown I bought a new journal and have used it through out. I don’t just write, I collage, sketch, paint, and hoard trinkets. (now, polaroid photos, stickers, tickets, drawing Rowans drawn me, and -don’t judge- my ovulation tests) I love my journals, I’ve kept every one since I was 17 and do enjoy flicking through them and reliving my old crushes, my teenage drama, memories with family that are no longer with us.

Unlock you’re inner child

Creativity comes from the most unexpected places. If you’re feeling low, why not try it. Don’t worry it doesn’t have to be special or look amazing. As long a it makes you feel good and you enjoy it do it. James is the most uncreative person I’ve met. He doesn’t do art or craft with Rowan and I. Even he got some fun out of Wreck this journal this week.

Look around for inspiration. Creativity comes in many forms! Check out my pintrest here for ideas. Try something new and out the box. Learn a new craft skill or combine a hobby you already have. If you’re a gamer how about trying a craft-based game like Minecraft, Animal crossing or The sims. If you’re a sports person, why not look up some craft ways of doing this, James loves darts so next week we’re going to play paint darts.

REMEMBER

You are not alone. Loads of people have depression and its ok not to be ok. If you’re really struggling, talk to someone about it being a friend or family member or medical professional. There are loads of online charities that offer help for free (Links below) just don’t be afraid to reach out. You can contact me via the page if you want to talk anytime about anything. Drop me a message or email.

Overall look after you! Take care, stay safe.

Charites

NHS  https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/depression-help-groups

Mind  https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/depression/useful-contacts/

The Samaritans  https://www.samaritans.org/

Childline https://www.childline.org.uk/

Depression UK https://depressionuk.org/index.php/how-we-can-help/national-links/

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