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(Timber Schuman)

Timber Schuman

Stress Relievers

September 17, 2019

Life happens. Life is the most common embodiment of contrast, it’s a constant shift between the highs and the lows, yet it always seems like an ever-shifting uphill battle. It’s astoundingly easy to get pulled under the raging waves or to simply cling to not acknowledging the battle you are currently fighting, meaning loss of all motivation. But we need a motive to fight. We need a motive to carry on, to replenish our strength, to clear our heads and to dictate our priorities. We become desperate for a way to filter out our negative thoughts and sporadic actions and to maintain an optimistic mindset. Venting is a necessity, though it is malleable enough to suit every individual. 

People are always passionate about something, typically multiple things, which is the start to finding a stress reliever. Passions are derived from cultivated desires and tendencies, they are predilections strong enough to never become tarnished. Even if they take an effort and time to achieve, the satisfaction of completing them makes doing that thing or action worth it and then some. For example, some people like to drain their physical energy in order to strengthen their mental state. Connor Scholes, Courtney Roberts and many others hold true to this through working out in weights and cardio exercises, training for their sport of choice. 

Some tend to enjoy expressing their restless emotions directly instead of taking up an activity or practice that gets your mind off the stressful subject. Those who express feelings directly can do it through an array of mediums. Some are captivated with the trail left from the journey of a pencil, such as Junior Jawzlyn Haws. Others by the vibrations born into the air from their voice or an instrument, including Olivia Wick, who plays the baritone. Some by enjoying the view painted before their eyes, and yet still some who enjoy human connection and socialization. It can be an experience, a fantasy, an action, or a relationship that can bring the revelations we yearn for to solve the problem at hand. 

As for myself, I enjoy all of the things stated above. I find it nice to have both that direct expression as well as do an activity completely unrelated to the problem to give myself a brain break. I love hiking so I can immerse myself in a calming, quiet setting, which for me tends to be in the rural mountains, lakes, and woods. I also taking photos along the way. The photos I take can share my experience with others in a way that I consciously fabricate, through the composition of the piece and the tone emitted from each image. If I do it right, people will feel the same exact emotion I felt when photographing my subjects and my thoughts toward them, even if no words could ever describe either of those things. And to me, being able to share my thoughts, feelings, and emotions can take a lot of weight off of my chest. 

That’s the beautiful thing about photography as well as other forms of visual art, you can express something words could never describe, or at least in a way you would be able to effectively. You can give off tones that immediately hit the viewer the second their eyes land on the piece. Sometimes, you’ll even get to personally witness the flicker in an individual’s eyes as thick resonance settles in their hearts, like your artwork is the gust of wind rekindling a fire or maybe even concocting a brand new one. You know instantly that your work has made a huge impact on this person. I’ve had this feeling thrusted upon me from looking at some exceptionally few pieces and I’ve been lucky enough to see this rare event before from my artwork as well. That is a feeling I will never forget, one I don’t think I’m capable of describing. 

A clear mind is crucial to making those hard, complex decisions that keep you afloat in the torrents of life. Motivation is needed to tear the paddle through the water, to propel you onward. At points during the chaotic crash, you can become disoriented. Directions are confused, motives are lost, and you need a moment to remember not only why you are fighting against the storm, but how to fight against it effectively. What will assist you in dealing with the weight on your shoulders? It could be an experience, a fantasy, an action, or a relationship to rip away the chains weighing you down.

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