I read this article this afternoon and something clicked in my head.
All of the moments of "absolute narcissism" are the good days: the ones where you take care of yourself, when you make the things that you to make, when you make sense of the bad days. They're the days you feel invincible. The days when the sun is out and you're in a good mood and you want to dance it all out because you're so. damn. happy.
And all of the moments of "crippling self doubt" are the bad days: the ones where you don't get out of bed, when you stare longingly at your work pile and wish you had the energy to work on it, when you remember the good days fondly and hope that they will come back. They are the days you spend scrolling through Instagram and looking at all of the other creative people you follow and you think, "How do they do that? How do they have a business and a marriage and a family and a LIFE(?!)while I'm sitting here like a lump in my bed?"
Sometimes you scroll a bit more, read one more blog entry, listen to one more podcast, and then you feel it: that little seed of inspiration starting in your head. You write a note on your hand. Type a note into your phone. Do something, anything, to save your idea before it flits away into the void. That's where the art comes in. The inspiration, the seed, the idea.
You need the bad days to make you appreciate the good ones. You need the good days to calm the suffering during the bad ones. You use the ideas you conjure up during the good days to calm you on the bad days. Use the ideas from the bad days to inspire you look at the details. Trust your ideas. Turn those ideas into a process.
Dive into your process and make your art. Let your feelings be heard or seen or smelled or tasted or felt. Set them out into the world so they are no longer bottled up inside of you. Let other people experience them too.