3 Tips To Get Out of a Funk
This week has been a weird week and what I’ve learned is I’m not alone! In this episode, we are going to talk about actions you can actually take to understand the fog and let it move past you so you can get out of a funk. I have been mentally sluggish or unmotivated to create or just do anything - it’s like I’m slowly moving through a fog.
When I talk about it I’ll declare that I’m in a funk, but I wasn’t depressed or sad - just slow and almost directionless..so... for this episode, I’m going to refer to it as fog, because it provides a fabulous visual for what is actually going on...
These times in low visibility are extremely useful times if you let yourself just relax into it. Because this is true of everything - What you resist, persists….
How to get over a funk
No matter where you are in your art career, whether you are just starting to create, or starting to sell artwork or a seasoned artist; there is a single commonality that we all go through and have to address on a daily basis. Our minds.
Our minds are these amazing machines that process faster and on more levels than we can possibly verbally decipher. We actually see, feel and interpret more and more without actually knowing it.
For example: right now you are listening to this episode, you may be hearing a bird in the background, or the heat kick on, or a car going by, you may feel cold, your feet are tingling - all of this is just happening and your brain is actively processing it - it is amazing! It is a truly amazing machine.
And like I said it is processing more than what is audible or visual and we have to come to terms with what our brain is processing that is unseen when we get into a funk.
So this past week I got into a funk: meaning I didn’t want to paint, I didn’t want to write, I didn’t want to do anything that was on my list of things to do and so a trudged through some things like I was moving through mud - dragging my feet without any enthusiasm… my mind was foggy and I could barely put together a sentence (which made for fun conversations when the kids would guess what the rest of the sentence would be - honestly it was frustrating :)
But I knew physically I was fine. So I went on a slow walk with the dogs to clear my head, listen to the sounds, be outside on a surprisingly warm February day, and while I still found my head was foggy, I called a good friend and chatted with her about the fog, I went to an artist meeting to chat with fellow artists and what did become clear was that I was meant to take this time and relax - I needed to embrace the fog and just do what I wanted to do rather than what I should be doing.
After some time reflecting and chatting, what became a clear thought within the fog is that my world was shifting to what I wanted and have been manifesting.
So, before I lose some of you, let me clarify what manifesting means. Manifesting is a new woo-woo term that essentially means for the analytical-logic-driven people, you have put goals into place and envisioned you completing these goals...so depending on how you want to look at the term the next part still applies. To put manifesting into terms we can all understand, I think :), Think about manifesting like you are about to get up to bat and you can see where the ball is going to go when you hit it - that is manifestation and goal setting. You can see it happening and that’s what makes it happen.
So let’s actually think about what literal fog is;: fog is created “When the sun rises, the air and ground warm-up. This leads to the air temperature being warmer than the dew point temperature, which causes the fog droplets to evaporate. ... As the air cools during the longer night the relative humidity increases, which can result in to fog formation.” https://wxguys.ssec.wisc.edu/2011/09/26/why-is-fog-usually-seen-in-the-morning/
In short, the two different temperatures are colliding creating a fine mist of water droplets between the cool sky and the warming earth thereby lowering visibility. Your brain fog is essentially two experiences colliding making it difficult for you to see and move foward….
That’s a weird thing to think about, I know. So you are probably asking thanks for explaining fog and what I’m feeling but “Well, Stephanie you want me to actually just sit still and do nothing?” Kind of yes, but I want you to think about the fog...move slower while the fog is there until you see clearly.
What to Think About While In A Funk
Again sounds weird so here are some ACTUAL THINGS TO THINK ABOUT WHILE IN THE FOG OR FUNK. THINK - IT'S A PROBLEM THAT HAS AN ANSWER - FIND THE ANSWER.
Sit and think for maybe just 5 - 15 minutes, go for a walk, call friends and talk about it - embrace the fog and dig deep within to evaluate WHY you are in a funk, what two or more experiences are colliding that causing the low visibility..
and then think about what you want or need to do to get out of the fog. Because here is the thing: when you are in a funk it means the world isn’t the way that you are used to it and really you don’t know what to do about it. Maybe You feel out of control - well what are you trying to control and why?
, or you may feel unappreciated - why do you feel that way and what do you think you need to feel appreciated? , or you may feel that you aren’t being heard - what are you saying, who are you saying it too and is it the right message for them to hear?
Do you see where I’m going with this? When you get in a fog or funk; look at the why and what and move slowly through the fog until you see the light.
, and sometimes the answer is just to sit and wait for the fog to pass and, sometimes the answer is a clear direction to move out of the fog
Think if it like when you create something - you have a vision of what the work is supposed to look like and it’s just not there so and you keep adding paint, keep adding paint - keep fighting the thing that’s in front of you, but what you should be doing is stepping back, let the paint settle and come back with fresh eyes and fresh approach.
I’ve taken this advice this week too and Instead of forcing myself to do all the things I’m supposed to I embraced the fog and let the things happen outside of my visibility.
3 Steps to Get Out of a Funk
For those of us who love lists - here are your 3 action steps to get out of the funk
- Relax into the fog and evaluate what and why the fog is happening. Remember what you resist persists (think about smoke - does it really help to wave your hand wildly in front of you or does it work better to sidestep or let the wind blow….
- Talk to friends or colleagues about your fog or funk - someone outside the fog can see what's going on….
- Move slowly until the fog lifts.
Now I will also say that sometimes a funk can be actual depression and all of the above may not work for you, then please make a call to a health professional - even in times of COVID, these health professionals can meet with you via Zoom. There is absolutely nothing wrong with asking someone outside the fog to help guide you out of the fog into the light.
I hope you found this week's topic helpful and the fog lifts for you soon too to reveal the beautiful world and artwork ahead of you.
I’m Stephanie Weaver, a fine art artist and I look forward to chatting again with you next week with more art business tips. Feel free to post questions or topics you’d like for me to consider in upcoming episodes.
Until next time, stay safe, happy, and healthy and Happy painting.