You know about brain freeze, the unexpected feeling of being the deer in the headlights. Brain drain is a different sort of productivity problem.
Brain drain in this sense is not the flight of educated professionals from developing countries to more industrialized places. Brain drain produces an effect similar to that of writer’s block. Brain drain is like burn out, that common disorder that results from doing too much too fast under too much pressure, for too long. This post is about yet another gremlin: brain drain
A case of brain drain can be like a wonderful fresh water well that dries up and your bucket only brings up a bit of sludge.
Our creative force is like a fish pond that needs replenishing. It is like a machine that needs care and cleaning. It is like a motor that needs fuel. But, unlike these tangible examples, there is no warning light to let us know we’re running low on creative juice. You just wake up one day, and feel like there’s nothing there up there.
When this happens, your brain has drained. Symptoms may include fatigue, but you can experience brain drain and not be tired. Brain drain is trying to think and only getting blank pages in response. It happens when you simply haven’t been taking proper care of your own creativity generator.
It can happen when you get too busy. Too busy to write in your journal. Too busy to sketch. Too busy to visualize. You can keep running on inertia for a while; it seems that all is well. And then one morning you wake up, and there’s nothing in the pipeline of creative force. You just hear an echo.
Brain drain is getting into a rut. It can be scary. You wonder if you’ll ever have another new idea. Fortunately, the solution is not complicated or expensive. Most healthcare plans cover you.
While routines are good and necessary, if you don’t schedule in activities to replenish your creative fish pond, then one day there are no fish to fish.
If you diagnose this problem in your life, you are also the only qualified doctor to prescribe the appropriate treatment. The prescription could be to plan a dinner party with some people you haven’t seen in a while or it could be to visit a museum or a toy store. The solution could be to clean out your closet or desk, or maybe sign up for an evening class.
Here is a list of suggestions to consult in treating your own case of brain drain:
– Read a book that is not the kind of book you normally read.
– Try a new restaurant.
– Visit an antique shop.
– Buy new socks.
– Walk a different route.
– Talk to someone at work you normally don’t talk to.
– Turn off all media. Including your computer.
– Light a fragrant candle.
– Sit down and write in your journal, even if you only write, “I have no idea what to write.”
– Try standing on your head, against the wall if necessary.
Highly-functioning people are that way because they take care of themselves. You’re in charge of your life, don’t forget to water and feed your own creative force.