So, as you may have noticed, due to circumstances beyond our control, this blog has been on hiatus for a little while. However, I’m glad to say that we’re back and raring to go.
The thing about a break, actually, is it can be absolutely salutary for your health and well-being. I mean, that’s the purpose of a vacation, isn’t it – to give you some time away so that when you come back, you’re ready for action again.
Starting out this year, I was actually on a bit of a hobby break. During 2018, I finished about 180 miniatures, a personal best, and while there certainly were breaks and down-periods in between, in that year I had hobby blinders on, and I was really only focusing on wargaming. It was rewarding, certainly, and I got a ton done that I wanted to (and had been afraid that I’d never get to) but it felt like I was neglecting my other hobbies. And I’ve got plenty of those.
So, four days into 2019, I took a break. I read more. I wrote more. I dug out other games I’d been neglecting and enjoyed them again, renewed my enthusiasm for them. I researched. It was a lot of fun.
And, about a week ago (as of this writing), I decided it was time to get back to my hobby corner.
I felt good. I felt ready. And when I sat down, I was painting with a fresh perspective. I was more confident; it felt like I was better than before, which was a very strange feeling. Things just clicked. It wasn’t the same rote memorization of “this color, this brush, this stroke.” People talk about coming back to an old favorite “with new eyes,” and I’d never quite understood what they meant until then. I’d truly sat down again to paint with new eyes, and it was a result of taking a break and letting my energies flow elsewhere. Because in the intervening time, my subconscious mind worked on what made me step back from painting, and taught me how to do it better.
Now, of course, this long of a break means that I’m likely not on pace to surpass my 2018 hobby numbers, and while that kind of disappoints me a little, it’s also kind of freeing. I like the idea that I can just noodle around in the basement, paint what I want, and not worry about a schedule. I’ve got fun projects lined up, but more importantly I’ve got a fresh enthusiasm for the hobby, because I was feeling a little burnt out before.
So when you’re seemingly reached the end of your hobby rope and you’re ready to just sell it all and start playing KeyForge, maybe just take a breath, and take a break. Read a book. Dig out your old comics. Start drawing in your sketchbooks again. And you’ll likely find that what was frustrating you before just isn’t an obstacle anymore.
About the Author;
Peter Kuebeck is a writer, gamer and award-winning mini-painter living in the Midwest. He wages a constant battle against the ever-growing tide of unpainted minis in his basement, and occasionally GMs role-playing game sessions with friends. Catch his hobby shenanigans on Twitter at @popculturecube