I feel drained.....not just drained but kind of empty....UPDATED

I have been trying to "restart" my creative mind, but of late, I feel like I have had my brain replaced by a vacuum cylinder.  

I am at a total loss, and even the LASER project I was working on, failed miserably.   Before going on to anything more with that, I will have to get some protective eyewear though.

This is all very depressing to me....but I don't want anyone that knows me to feel badly because I do, it isn't your fault....it is partly situational and party medical (I feel like I am getting old - like my imagination is waning...).

I guess PART of the problem is that the BAR KARMA project appears to be coming to an end.....with no news of whether it will be renewed next year or not......I had a LOT of fun, writing and submitting ideas to that, and even got to hear a suggested piece of music on one of the shows :-)

I want to thank each of you for replying to my little mope session.....it has gotten kind of lonely in my section of the world....and it's good to know i am well thought of....thank you all.   I guess my recent failures, the mess I made of the box I  sent out in the gift exchange, the recent ambition to do something with a crystal radio....and my laser project that fizzled out....my fading eyesight, and inability to do the artwork (pyrographs) I once enjoyed doing....all has taken it's toll.

To be honest, it hasn't been a LITTLE mope session, this has been going on for a few months, but has come to a head recently.

What good is this deafness.....

Only one?

I was just going through many of my old PM's since I have kept a LOT of them, almost as far back as I can remember....so I could weed out some of them, and I have come to realize a few things:  
#1:  I am DEEPLY in everyone's debt here for all they have done for me over the past few years.   In fact, that brings me to something else....
#2: I feel quite ashamed at feeling down when there are so many of you out there that care, I have NO BUSINESS feeling alone. .. it might even be considered "selfish" of me to feel that way.    And I am sorry for that.....but I do realize I am not alone, and I ACKNOWEDGE each and every one of you I have dealt with over the years. You are all VERY special to me.

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Goodhart (author) 6 years ago
You are all VERY special to me though.....
Reading this thread and some of the replies, it really sounds like severe depression.  Hopelessness, sadness, inability to concentrate, isolation, stress, etc.  I hope you're able to seek some sort of treatment or a correction to any sort of medications you might be taking.  Evaluating your life in this kind of mindset is not accurate, helpful, or good.  Depression leads to faulty thoughts.  I've been there.  I'm sorry I can't be of more help, but I think you deserve to feel better than this.
Goodhart (author)  AngryRedhead6 years ago
Thank you AR, I am actually feeling a bit better, I have to make a few changes in what I "allow to rule my life" and not be so much of a piece of flotsum or jetsum, but more of a boat with a rudder, if you get my drift (oh I just HAD to put a pun in there, didn't I ? LOL). But, I am serious too. I have felt MUCH too much like the steel ball in a pinball machine, being directed by a few sources, and a lot of luck (or lack there of).
Aw, I'm sorry. I know I get like that when I'm tired or there's a bigger issue going on in my life. When I feel like something's sucking the creativity out of me, I usually find that it's true - it's not me, it's some external factor depleting all my extra resources that are usually devoted to hobbies, etc.

But regardless of why you're feeling burned out, IMNSHO, when Instructables become an end rather than a means it's time to reassess. Not to sound all advice-y, but the only thing I've ever found to get past it is to just stop putting pressure on myself to make anything (unless it's for work or school; then I just have to deal). I do what I need to do, and veg out during any free time rather than getting more and more frustrated that I can't make a wildly popular instructable that makes it onto every tech blog or whatever. The biggest thing for me is to give myself permission to not be a "good/productive" member. Eventually I'll become self-motivated to do a project because I want the thing I'm making - I've found that external motivators, like contests or pageviews or being featured, don't do much for me; they suck the fun out of it.

TL;DR: Maybe try only making stuff you really really want, and if you don't feel like it don't do it? It might take forever but eventually cycle through...

But you're not me and I'm not you, your mileage may vary, etc. :)
Goodhart (author)  Lithium Rain6 years ago
Well, when first started here, you all helped me feel young again, I felt like I had a purpose, that I could accomplish something again. Now, after a few years, I have a feeling that I haven't done anything at all. I get depressed if I feel useless, and lately my only use has been a home body beast of burden, if you know what I mean. It is getting hard to keep that stiff upper lip and all.
I think we both need to return to the original reasons we joined this site. For me, it was because ohmigosh, look at all these sweet sweet projects! I didn't even think of writing one myself for several months. Now that's been sort of inverted.

It's simply not so that you haven't done anything at all; I don't know what you've done except what I've seen here, but that is sufficient to refute the assertion. You're quite an active participant in the community, and that contribution does not deserve to be devalued.

Above all else, I think this needs repeating: Nobody should feel pressure to publish. Full stop. Nobody should feel lesser as a person because someone else has more popular projects, or more prominent projects, or more featured projects, or anything else. I could be wrong, but I really feel like this is the root issue here. You are not useless. You are a valued community member. You have skills, competencies, and knowledge that are respected and admired (and maybe envied a little...) by many, including myself.

The usefulness, value, and worth of human beings has been measured in absurdities before, but I can't think of a more breathtakingly irrelevant unit than the number of published instructables. Neither is "completed projects" any better. If you never did another DIY project in your life, it would not affect how anyone feels about you or how useful you actually are one iota. We as a society have got to stop sending the message that a person's only worth lies in their productive output. 
Goodhart (author)  Lithium Rain6 years ago
It isn't so much pressure to publish, as it is watching the final hours tick away when I wanted to do so much for others, that i haven't been able to do....I wanted to "make a difference", not just be a prescence. I want to feel useful again, I wnat to help inspire, to be more than a few bytes of typed message on a screen....  The Dark
>final hours

Hey, for all I know I'm watching my final hours tick away. Unless there's something you're not telling us, you're not likely to be ten seconds away from croaking. No man knows the hour and all (yeah, I'm misapplying that... :P ).

>more than a few bytes of typed message on a screen

Well, heck, the windows kernel is a few bytes typed on a screen. Alright, more than a few, but presumably quantity doesn't concern you as historically you've been the most prolific poster around. So, since quantity doesn't matter, is it quality? In that case you have, I think, even lesser reason for concern.
(Your last sentence confuses me...for I already told you that you do inspire. ;) )

It sounds to me, though, like you'd like some kind of tangible result for your efforts. I hear you. Maybe you can expand on what this would entail in a concrete sense. What kind of thing could you point to and say "There, I now have accomplished something I desire"? What's the littlest thing that would do that for you? What's the largest? Maybe you can work towards something in the middle. 
Goodhart (author)  Lithium Rain6 years ago
What would it take? Wow, "in my day" I subscribed to the now non-existant Electronics Now mag. and built, using the schematics alone, nearly everything they could publish, untill they started putting out projects that I couldn't do with $400 worth of equipment, much less a pencil soldering iron and some magnet wire.

I did what I could from books, and in my prime, corrected many a book's schematics, etc. that were misprinted. 
Now, I doubt if I would be able to see such (catch it in other words) until the project "didn't work" and then I'd have a hard time finding the problem.  
What is the smallest thing that would help?   I guess having more then a few feet to work in; and the largest?  Being able to be a Big Brother to a neighborhood child.....neither of these will happen though.  I have "another presence" that uses my work room, and I would need at least 5 personal friends nearby in order to be able to be a Big Brother;  I have tried, I am unacceptable being such a "loner".    What would be in the middle....I don't see a middle ground at this point,  but I appreciate your trying to help.  
Sounds like you need to expand your hobby/hobbies to something that's realistic right now. Do you like learning things, or is that unsatisfying compared to making them?
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