Do you cringe when…

…you read your old blog articles? I do. I cringe so bad that I don’t even finish reading them. A few paragraphs are enough to make me close my Chrome tab.

I used to think of myself as an okay writer. I think I’m still riding high from my writing wins from high school – Jesus, that was more than a decade ago. At fifteen, I managed our school paper and I won a few writing awards. All that achievement got to my head! It made me confident that I was a natural, and that I needn’t write so much because my talent was innate.

Well, clearly that isn’t the case. The sobering truth is that talent should be nourished through constant practice. The part of my brain assigned to writing has shrunken to a nut. I’m back to level one in terms of skill.

I feel like this is a thing that happens to a lot of people. The older we get, the less we practice, and the less we do the stuff we used to love doing. There are too many reasons it’s commonplace (e.g. our education system, Pavlovian conditioning, ever-increasing responsibilities, consumerism, the system beating us to a pulp…), but it’s prevalent enough that the idea of passion has become a Holywood-esque dream. The world hammers us to becoming cogs in the system – uniform and utilitarian.

Is there a skill or a hobby that you love doing, but haven’t engaged in for a long time? What are your reasons for not engaging in it? I’m keen to know.

Quarantine Week X: Babbling

I can’t write. The words have not been flowing properly. I find myself stuck in proofing and rewriting. In fact, I spent ten minutes just now attempting to re-write the first sentence of a draft.

Apparently, the key to getting out of a rut is to juggle your hobbies. It’s an empowering thing to know that, if you’re stuck in a project, it doesn’t mean you’re a failure; you just have to take a breather.

Socialising. One of the resolutions I had this year was to reconnect with two friends per month. It has been going well, but I find that I require discipline. Sometimes, I can’t bear the thought of socialising.

This applies to many people, I guess. When you’ve used up your willpower and motivation on matters like work, there is little left for talking to people, even friends. I find myself in this situation all the time, and I always have an excuse to reschedule.

As you can tell, it’s neither sustainable nor healthy. When I know that it’s time to talk to friends, I just suck it up and do it. I ring them, and after a minute of us talking, I forget why I was so unwilling to in the first place.

Hobbies and money. I have a bad trait: I need to spend money on a thing before I could commit to it. Working out, blogging, painting: I had to pay for them before I stuck to them.

The lockdown has given me time to think about how I could enrich my life. Now, I have a few ideas in mind. I want to study, draw digitally, and learn to play the keyboard piano. None of these are cheap. And I don’t want to choose just one: I want them all.

I’m taking my time and thinking things through, and I’m also constantly reminding myself that money isn’t necessary to investing yourself to something. Perhaps desiring so much is just the effect of the poor sleep I’ve been getting lately. My bed is utterly useless, and I could feel its springs on my back whenever I lie down.

Maybe I should get a new bed…

I said I couldn’t write, yet I’ve just finished an entry… hoorah, me!