FOB: Fear of Blackout
We’ve seen many reaching out to a new audience through the web. Live readings, classes, Insta stories, tutorials, music covers, even banana bread has made a comeback. But what happens when you are not inspired? The fear of missing out plays a role throughout our lives, artist or no artist. ‘What if I don’t go to this audition?’ ‘No one is going to keep following my blog if I don’t post,’ ‘I need to do this live stream cause _______ is doing one every day,’ ‘I have to paint today cause I didn’t yesterday.’
For a while after this happened I was afraid to go out the front door for fear of getting sick and or spreading the virus to my partner, my family or the elderly couple down the road. Around a month ago I just finished a group call talking about the uncertainty of the arts which just sent me down a spiral of worry and anxiety. This led me away from attending anymore of those calls until recently. The last month I would say I spent a proportion of the time doing ‘self work.’ I took up yoga to get my body and mind healthy. I meditated, I journaled and re-evaluated how everything was going. I made the discovery that I (apologies in advance for The Wizard of Oz reference) had the answers the whole time. I may not be where I want to be yet but I’m definitely on the right track. Sometimes it takes something as big as this to remind yourself of where you want to be and who you truly are.
The truth is these are trying and scary times. Some days you’re riddled with fear and anxiety that the thing that once brought you joy just seems too much. In other scenarios you simply are not inspired and or burned out from the uncertainty, the fear, worries before all this happened and there is nothing wrong with that. Perhaps this is a time for you to reflect. Really think about how you are approaching your art form and your life. Are you being your true authentic self? Is this art form a true reflection of your morals? Are you happy?
Of course the opposite can be true too. You could be making all the art in the world right now which is fantastic, just remember to do so because you want to. Everyone is going digital now to stay in touch with their audience until ‘things go back to normal.’ In turn there’s the fear of missing out of an audience if you don’t follow the crowd. Don’t get me wrong, keeping in touch and reaching a new audience is great, but it is important to use the mediums that are true to you. Example, if you’re a bag of nerves like myself and just getting to grips with technology, is it a good idea to go from zero to ninety by doing a Facebook live? Build up to it first, practice in front of the mirror, write out prompts, practice with your friends,do what you need to do to get better and use mediums that suit you.
Be true to yourself, create from your heart, and stay safe.