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Discussion Starter #1
I have always really loved writing. When I was younger, I wrote poetry, music, short stories, and kept a journal. But, when I was in middle school after my parents split up, one of my parents snooped and found some of my writing and used the angsty teenage lyrics to make the other parent feel like shit about leaving. Later, in high school, I had a boyfriend who snooped and found a journal entry describing my discomfort about the fact that he said "I love you" sooner than I had hoped. He came looking for me at a family member's house to show me that my words had made him cut his wrists. Writing was important to me, and they hijacked it and hurt me with it.

I'm an academic so I write often, but not in the same way. I stopped writing for myself, altogether. The only reason I write now is to defend or argue or posit. It just comes with the nature of the work, and I love academic writing too, but I feel I've sort of forgotten how to write just to express myself to only me, without trying to convince a reader of something.

As life goes on, I also generally find myself feeling less artistically inspired. Once in a blue moon I will have an idea for a painting that I set to work on, but those are becoming rarer too, and I used to draw all the time, every day.

Creativity is important for INFP's. Have any other INFP's lost touch with their mediums of expression?
Was it for different reasons, or similar ones?
Did you ever re-connect with those mediums?
What did it take to do so?
Did it feel the same?
 

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I lost a lot of interest in my creative/artistic interests a few years ago during a devastating heartbreak.

Writing, painting, playing piano or guitar, listening to music, and reading certain genres, I found all of it very difficult to do. I felt as if I was going mad, for I had used such motives as self-expression for so long, I didn't know what to turn to. I'm gradually returning to them now, though: picking up on pieces, learning new methods and techniques and whatnot: so hopefully I can twist such an experience into something new.

No, it doesn't feel the same, and it never will - how could it? It's provided a new perspective to my approaches, to the environment, nay, world around me, that it feels as if inspiration and imaginative stimuli is sparked so much differently. What once would have been a resource, now feels bleak and grey - a simple breath can sweep them away.

I still wrote in terms of research, such as studying something and wanting to understand it better (some might call them essays), but I think that's easier to do because most thought processes have already be written, and I'm merely understanding them. When it came to fiction and having to improvise, however, there was always a blockage, like a defense mechanism which I couldn't get through -- at last that seems to be deteriorating. God knows what's been happening on the other side (probably a lot of weeds and dead flowers to pull out - or a corpse to bury).
 

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Personally, when people have found and torn apart my artistic interests and love, I retreated away from them and closer to the things that I cherished. It did cause me to develop some mental issues and difficulties in interacting with other people, though. I think it's hard to turn to other people instead of art when you know just how cruel people can be sometimes, inadvertently or not. I've come to rely on art so much as an emotional crutch that I don't know what I'd do without it, even though I'm starting to realize that it's not healthy to depend on it so much, and that it won't fix all of the other problems in my life. But yeah, 'losing the muse' would be my worst nightmare.

I think, weirdly enough, the healthier I get the more I try to turn away from art and more towards the real world, e.g. connecting with other people and appreciating the natural world/everyday life. I'd honestly like to reconnect with art on a level that's more evenkeeled and emotionally healthy, rather than in a dependant way. I have doubts I'll ever be able to fully accomplish that, though. I agree with you that art is critical to a lot of INFPs, though I'm not entirely sure why. Probably because there are so many intense internal emotions that are difficult to express to the outside world, which often mocks and denigrates creativity, art and emotions, while a piece of paper or an easel is an easy way to escape from the real world and create a different world filled with these intense emotions and all kinds of wonderful things.

I guess I wrote two paragraphs basically saying 'I don't know,' but I do know that during the times I couldn't access any creativity, I got really depressed and lost the ability to function emotionally. That was a while ago, though. I think that once I figured out how to just hack away at it, everything got a lot better. Now I'm able to look at it more objectively as something fun and important to me rather than the absolute top of my priorities. Sometimes I do feel like I lost something when I stopped being tormented by teenage emotional agony and artistic obsession (which isn't really true at all, I think I'm happier now that I've gotten a little distance and reconnected with art on a more detached level).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I think, weirdly enough, the healthier I get the more I try to turn away from art and more towards the real world, e.g. connecting with other people and appreciating the natural world/everyday life. I'd honestly like to reconnect with art on a level that's more evenkeeled and emotionally healthy, rather than in a dependant way.

I guess I wrote two paragraphs basically saying 'I don't know,' but I do know that during the times I couldn't access any creativity, I got really depressed and lost the ability to function emotionally.

Sometimes I do feel like I lost something when I stopped being tormented by teenage emotional agony and artistic obsession (which isn't really true at all, I think I'm happier now that I've gotten a little distance and reconnected with art on a more detached level).
Thanks for sharing! It's helpful to hear it from this perspective because I can relate, too. When I was writing and drawing the most, I was also living with an eating disorder, depression, addiction issues and depression, among other things. So yeah - to a large extent, I was probably using art and writing as a solace or a reprieve from the pain I was experiencing in real life. It seems like a different life, now - I have an excellent relationship with my family, a partner who loves and understands me, and I'm fairly successful in my career so far. So I don't feel the need to escape as much, though I still miss my art.
 

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Oh!!:hug:

I remember doing some inconsistent journal writing expressing some deep fears or concerns I had when I was younger....and my mom snooped around my room like she often did and found it. She started making a big deal out of it by telling other family members in front of me and I remember hearing laughter. It was so embarrassing and I was so infuriated. It truly felt violating and hurtful because of how sensitive and private I was/am. Growing up, I’ve never really been emotionally close with my family and didn’t have many friends so writing was my way of being able to express myself in an organized way to the imaginary audience I’ve never really had.
Her reaction made me stop writing so much, but I’d find other ways like writing in a special code I made up, but that got tedious and it was hard keeping up with the thoughts that way. Then I began destroying my work after writing so that I could still get my thoughts out but didn’t have to worry about anyone reading it. I’d be sad sometimes because I’d be particularly impressed with something and watching the words get lost forever was disheartening.
I became more emotionally closed off when my writing decreased... I mean until I joined PerC and everything just came pouring out like a volcano. This has allowed me the freedom to post as close to anonymity as I can and I cherish that.


I’m sorry you had to feel that twice:( I didn’t realize that perhaps the current block in my creativity might also be due to this or something similar. It has gotten a lot tougher even with art as well.

I think it will take some time to reconnect with it because it might often involve having to lower any emotional guards you might have put up out of caution from the first experience.

Perhaps try a different creative outlet to gain some new experience before trying to go back to the ones you’ve enjoyed in the past (writing or painting, for you). So maybe try out something like dancing? Then try coming back to writing. Personally, broadening our creative experiences can help get back in touch with the idea of creativity and it helps you start over with something new. Then you can come back to whatever you previously did with some new fresh creative experience and perspective.

Or even just find ways to express writing in a slightly different way, like I did by joining perC to write anonymously. And I try out some poetry. It balances the old with something new and that can help feel more refreshed creatively.
 

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I think for me it was when something I really tried to put my heart in to, completely backfired on me, and I was never given a reason as to why I was not accepted in to the creative project. No reason at all. Left out in the cold. Had people cheering me on, saying I was more than capable. So I guess when I start drawing, writing, I'm almost paralyzed, like I need to find something new. I don't know what that thing is, but I'm looking for it still.

And I know when I find that thing, to stay silent about it until I've made a masterpiece.
 

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I'm so sorry that stupid people found/used/disrespected your work! This has always been a big concern of mine, which is why I don't have much art or works from my past. There are some ashes from a burnt diary in my backyard right now.

I lost the creative outlet of drawing when I was 12-13. I had been drawing so much and so many things for my whole life—and destroying what I created so no one would find it. I imagined so many wonderful things, and I was compelled to draw some of the things I thought of. Drawing was an immersive experience because I could draw as part of my imaginary narrative.

By age 13, it all stopped. I couldn't think that way anymore. I liked boys, I liked thinking about reality-based things, and I didn't have much use in drawing reality-based things.

I'll blame liking boys for my artistic demise! But I'm sure a lot of it had to do with the evolution of my drawings. As a young kid, I could draw whatever I wanted. As I got older, I realized that you can get in trouble if you draw things that aren't PC enough. (But I don't know how I could draw pictures of monsters mutilating some of my most annoying classmates, show the pictures off to my friends at school, and not get in trouble for it!!) I had to develop a dichotomy in my work: a censored half that other people would see, and a free half that only I would see. It was really hard to predict where or how someone would look to find my "free" work, so I eventually began censoring all my work and destroying anything that didn't comply with my new standards of censorship. Eventually, I didn't have anything left to draw. I still don't.

And I still like boys...

No one ever barged in on me or criticized my work. I did it to myself, and I don't think I'll ever recover. Maybe when I'm 82 and I lose every sense of decency...
 

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I had both throughout life. Interests stopping, as well as invasion of privacy
There is always that risk I guess when you express yourself. But the rewards can be good. I think my work could not have reached where it is now if I hadn't 'gone all the way'. So just make sure hide it well.
Creativity anyway has always been there for me. It can never be lost or stolen. If anything it got stronger, clearer. Medium is not necessarily important

When my interest in drawing went away, it was that I went to college for something else. Design. But I have to say, before my major started, I took art classes such as history and 2D design and it really revived my interest in drawing! This happened again more than once in my major.
So don't give up on an interest. You might just need a new approach, a fresher perspective. And doing more variation, you can also find the common theme of what it is exactly that you want to express.

I'm studying poetry right now. One of the things in the first chapter actually is mentioning have poems everywhere, in your home, in all places you frequent. Read them throughout the day,
It is to get the ball running. To always be in the mood for poetry. It is a wheel that needs fuel. So it makes sense your interest disappeared as you were not feeding it in any way.
 

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I haven't wrote a poem or a piece of creative writing this year and it's very worrying for me.
 

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I second Lamp76 on parts of this matter.

I currently moved away from creating any artwork. It wasn't really that I pulled myself away from it, but I did not feel the need to go back to it. I turn to art whenever there is something intense I cannot describe and need time to process. When I was younger, it was definitely a big part of my life to the point I wanted to become a some form of artist. But the more I become in-tune with myself and the inner turmoil of emotions, the more I neglected the real environment. It's a strange difference. I lost connect with the world and became very unhealthy. It's a very dangerous, yet inspiring feeling. The muse, the voices, the visions... They were all there. But the way I formed and treated relationships, the way I treated the world was very disconnected, yet dependent.

There still are moments where I feel the need to create, and I do. I think it still comes when I need a break from people and just need to think for awhile. I think I no longer feel the need to continue to create when there is no inspiration because I know my creative nature is still there. It's not lost or forgotten. I just need time to reconnect with the world and live for awhile. Knowing that really keeps me grounded. Before, that stability and lack of inspiration was the scariest as I felt I was losing a big part of myself. I do try to keep in-touch with the artistic world though. I search for art to see and study. It helps to focus on the technical side of art when I am in a stable mood, because when I need an outlet, the techniques I subconsciously absorbed tend to spill out. It shows development.
 

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The creativity seems to always be around for me. It makes life much more interesting. If I get sick and have a fever of 103, I don't feel creative, but usually every single minute of a regular day I am expanding on wonder. I am big on intrapersonal, visual creativity. Not too big on interpersonal, social creativity. pbbbbbbbbth....!! :wink:

Try to ignore the naysayers trying to cast gloom on you. Just forge straight ahead and adopt the philosophy of ZFG.
 

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I can totally relate to losing one's inspiration and even ability to be poetic, creative, emotional.

Similar to @Lady of Clockwork, what screwed me up was a breakup about 2 years ago. In the immediate aftermath I was coping in very creative ways through writing, photography, singing. I was feeling intensely at that time, which made it easier to describe emotions, the pain, the darkness, the loss as well as the beautiful memories. I was writing a lot at that time. It reminds me of this piece of art I once came across:



But after a while, when hopelessness and depression set in, my heart became more guarded and I eventually lost touch with it. I guess that's what I needed to survive.

I stopped writing, singing, daydreaming. I basically drowned in a lake of self-induced numbness which made it impossible for me to create beauty because I wasn't even able to perceive it anymore. I hurt and often tried to revive the awe of an orange sunrise, mist floating over the meadow in the city park in the morning, or the way two lovers looked at each other while walking down the shopping mile. But I just didn't feel deeply anymore. I even stopped watching sentimental movies altogether.

It took a lot of healing (and re-falling in love with my former girlfriend by reading through my entire journal, and then finally letting go with the most positive feelings and well-meaning and thankfulness over what we had) that brought back the old me. I needed to go back to where I lost myself, or part of myself, and pick me back up. With that an uncontrollable urge to read and write poetry came back, probably even more so than ever before. I had a personality jetlag for a while, to be honest, because I had forgotten what it feels like to be me as I used to be, to feel deeply, to see beauty in my heart and in other people.

Vulnerability and being in tune with your core are vital for creativity. Without them, more often than not, we will feel like we don't have anything to give. If we lose the sense for beauty around us, we'll have a hard time creating things that mirror it back to others.

Seasons come and go, and that's okay. There will be times when we are artists. And times when we are patients. And times when we are both at the same time.

It's a rare place you are in. It's a unique perspective you have from this place that others who haven't been there cannot give. Write about it and you'll touch fellow souls in similar places. And that alone already makes it beautiful and precious and worthwhile.
 

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Ya, I have lost touch, but I'm not sure how to get it back. I feel very INTP in that if I can't be the best, then I don't want to bother with it at all. The perfectionist in me is freaked out, and so I sort of hold onto the creative parts of myself and never share it with the world anymore. Probably should work on that...
 
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