Every issue we try to expand our magazine even more. We thought it would be great to connect to our audience by adding an advice column. All advice is given by our lovely volunteers (who are also our readers). We send out Instagram questions on our IG story for you guys (our audience) to reply to. All questions are anonymously sent to our volunteers via email.
If you have any insight or questions about our new venture - please DM us on Instagram @pinstripedzine or email us email@example.com.
Re: James G: Love is not a situation to be sat down over and logically deconstructed into mind-mapped pathways of progressing toward or away from. The connection you have developed with this individual will likely be held in your heart for years to come. While not presuming to know how deeply you feel for them, if it is certain your feelings will not be returned, you must make the painful choice to understand your happiness in not limited to the romantic future you hoped, but will never have, with this individual. Love is the fabric of our shared reality (though this may not always appear to be the case) and exists all around us, in many forms, in many faces. While you may not experience love in the way you envisioned with this person, know the components of that love you pined for exist all around you, and have likely existed around you all this time. What would this relationship have provided you with that you can’t experience in others, or in other experiences? Surely, if we all thought this way all the time, no one would be in fulfilling relationships. But when you have tortured yourself with the belief that unrequited affection is the stopper in love’s flow into your life, you must realize that it continues to exist in the people, places and experiences you know now, and in the ones you don’t yet. If it is not totally certain your feelings will never be returned, know that love can loop around and return into your life in a multitude of different ways. Keep your heart open, and trust life to collaborate with love in ways that will one day be requited, romantically or otherwise.
Re: Brandi R: I think it would be helpful to list why the space doesn't make you feel comfortable. Are those feelings attached to objects? Then discard of the objects. Replace them with things things that interest you. Alternatively, give a space a breath of fresh air by rearranging things.
Re: Sarah A: Beautiful poet, Sylvia Plath, always claimed that "Your room is not a prison, you are." Try going out of your comfort zone, and this can manifest itself in how you rearrange your room. Stick to a color scheme or theme. Usually the way you feel about your life can resemble the status of your room, so making your room look and feel good makes you feel organized in the end.
Re: ANON: First of all, secure yourself a savings account. It's easier to spend your money when its right at your fingertips (credit/debit cards, cash), and having some of the money you earn put in a savings account will make it harder to access impulsively. Put something in it every paycheck, even if its only a small percentage of what you take home. Don’t touch it unless its an emergency, and always put back in what you spend as soon as possible. If you’re spending a lot online shopping, wait a full day before paying for what you’ve added to your cart. Don’t online shop when you’re drunk, it's a death trap. Try more thrift shopping instead of buying things new!
Re: Maggie W: Budgets, budgets, budgets!! It’s been said before, and will be said again. However, if saving is your goal, that doesn’t mean you have to cut out all extra expenses to achieve that. Give yourself a monthly “allowance” for the things you love to shop for (ie. clothes and accessories), and make it a sort of challenge to find the best, most affordable pieces you can find! Just marking out what you’re spending and becoming aware of the impact of your habits are great ways to set aside a little more money each month.
Re: Brandi R: There's two ways I could answer this question. Not to sound too much like a financial advisor, but to sound exactly like a financial advisor -- track down your expenses in a spreadsheet. Write down each item, the money spent, a category it fits into (such as food, clothes, eating out, rent, etc.), and most importantly write down if it's a need or a want. This can help show you what you can eliminate from your spending habits. Even if you know what to stop buying it becomes real when you make the effort to track your finances closely. And make sure to save after every time you get paid. Some people suggest saving at least 20% of your paycheck---if possible. Just save something! The second way to resolve this problem comes with a dash of changing your mindset (unless you're buying from secondhand, thrift, or antique stores). Watch The True Cost, read up on how societies consumeristic standards are bad for the planet, watch YouTubers who live a zero waste lifestyle or who use capsule wardrobes, and understand that where you shop doesn't always provide great working conditions for those who make the items we buy. It's a harsh reality to face, but once I learned about these facts I organically stopped being interested in buying impulsively and vowed to live a more minimalistic lifestyle.
Re: Maggie W: Don’t police your healing. Let yourself feel in whatever ways you need to, so long as you are not hurting yourself or anyone else in the process. Don’t feel bad for good days, and on bad days lean on friends — those who you know have your best interest at heart. Remind yourself that you are whole, and have always been that way regardless of any romantic involvement. Chase your own joy first and see where it leads you. You are enough all on your own.
Re: Morgan P: Write. Write and write and write. No one ever has to read your shitty poetry or love letters to someone who barely knows your name. Write a letter to your past self or future self and read it in five years, two years, six months, a week. Whatever you need - just get it out of you. Doodle on a sketch pad even if it's scribbling in one spot until you've ripped through ten pages of paper. It's okay. I once burned through 14 pages and myself in 28 different spots. It's coping in one form or another. Don't eat all day then drink off-brand energy drinks all night. Write an essay that's actually complete shit and somehow get a passing grade on it. Have get, get anew tattoo, pierce your nips. Do all of the aforementioned on the same damn day. Cry over your bank account and apply for a new job, an internship, a third job just for the hell of it. Keep moving. Change your diet, whiten your teeth, you are your own damn person. Realize that your personal growth is worth all of the shit you're going through now. You'll be okay.
Re: Matthew S: Go to DIY shows and talk to people, talk to the the bands you really like/inspire you. The most important thing is don’t get discouraged, there are so many bands just be consistent and keep talking to people. Find out who throws the shows you like and talk to them. It helps if you have some recorded music online for people to check out. Stay positive, be patient, stay consistent, and stay ready/keep practicing your set from when the time comes. Last thing - practice as much as you can as a band, we can all always use more practice.
Re: Keeley M: You can begin to start booking shows for your band by reaching out online to venues, booking collectives, and promoters! If there is a submission form on a venue's website, fill that in and send a message stating who you are and what kind of music you play, etc. You usually should have some kind of online presence with recorded music or video clips of your band playing so that the promoter can see what your music is like before booking you. Work on setting up an EPK (electronic press kit) if you want to get booked at as many places as you can. If you want to book other bands to play at your show or venue, just send them an email or DM on their social media page explaining who you are and what you do.
For example "Hi, I'm [name] with [name of venue or collective] and would love to have your band play at our upcoming show on [date] please let me know if you're interested, thanks!"
Re: Bita T: Everyone has their own definition of accomplishment, so first, you need to find yours. Set goals for yourself. Just this morning I read in an article: "purpose will give you security", and it's totally true. How can you acknowledge and honor that you've accomplished something if you don't know what you were aiming to accomplish in the first place? Review your values and priorities always ensure you're keeping them in line above all else. Be patient. Once you've set a goal, all that's left is to accomplish it.
Re: James G: Anyone can say ‘I’m accomplished’, but it’s another story to believe your successes as enough to confidently respond to the question, ‘so what have you done? The root of the issue lies in being consistently unsatisfied with what you’ve achieved in the past. Until you can acknowledge your successes as being a product of the best you could do at that time, you will struggle to present yourself as being adequate by the standards of from whomever you are seeking validation. On the flip side, acknowledging your failures as being representative only of the particular moment in time in which you failed is equally important. The constant inner need to meet a benchmark (set by a force in your life, or by your own self) sabotages the confidence it takes to believe you are accomplished. Remove that benchmark by knowing what you’ve achieved as being enough. You do not need to feel as though you missed the mark to such a degree that your achievements are not worthy of being listed in the canon of your successful history. Ask yourself why receiving praise or being awarded for your hard work (an expression of your skill level at that time) is not enough to fuel your confidence. If you are struggling to look for evidence, this could manifest as clients purchasing your products, receiving a formal award, or even having privately felt proud for meeting a personal goal. If you are looking to others to validate your accomplishments, after all, what about the congratulations received from them (or, from yourself) is not enough? Your talents, skillsets, and hard work have stunned, inspired and satisfied in the past – tell the world, what have you done?
What is a good way to be in touch with yourself when you’re feeling uninspired / GET OUT OF A CREATIVE FUNK?
Re: James G: Remember who you are, whether that be in a creative, spiritual or emotional sense, by looking to the past. The capabilities we possess are often evidenced in the ways we’ve previously expressed ourselves. Return to work you’ve created, and remind yourself of the creative experience, the intention and symbolisms in the piece. Pull up old messages and recall the effortlessness of going with the flow, of allowing emotional confidence to steer the conversation. Visit a place you’ve been before, perhaps where you used to frequent, and fall in love again with the atmosphere of history. Don’t expect to rehash old ideas or inspirations by doing these things. Expect instead that your learnt experience has expanded incredibly in the time between the former and the now. Your new perspectives (which you may not even realise you’ve developed) will shine new light on previous experiences, and reveal a new path of inspiration. Trust your personal history of success to lead you into a power-punching present. Your body of work will rock this world.
Re: ANON: When I’m hitting a mental block, I try to switch gears from creating to consumption. What media, events, or people have inspired you originally? My favorite thing to do when I’m in that headspace is a trip to a public library. Walk around, explore the different genres, ideas, and topics. Grab anything that looks interesting, as many books as you can carry. Get lost in the creation of others for a while. You could also check out art museums, galleries, or music stores if you have any near you. The most important thing is to be kind to yourself; you worth isn't measured by your productivity.
Re: Maggie W: Often times, when I want to feel more connected with myself and my creativity, the first step has to be stepping away from my phone. So often, social media (though it is a great sharing and connecting tool) can weigh down my creative spirit. Chase environments that make you feel good: burn some incense, take a bath, hang out with a pet, find an easy, not-necessarily-art activity, and do it. Once I free myself from external worries, and dedicate a space to myself and my personal growth, I find it much easier to make art. And I encourage you to mess around a little! Not all work has to be your best work, and sometimes just allowing yourself to suck is the way to go. You and your art are valid, even if it feels like it is difficult to get to.
Re: Brandi R: Creative funks can be difficult to deal with. The fact you're looking for a way to get out of it is a good start. As a photographer, I find that what gets me out of a creative funk is to look for inspiration in other art mediums or to research a topic that I want to be more educated in. Most times contemporary art magazines are a great source for feeling reinvigorated with how much creativity still exists. Therefore making you want to create. And if research doesn't suit your needs, then go out and experience life. Go explore! Even if that means going for a walk around your neighborhood. Or interacting with someone you've always wanted to. Switch your routine up a bit!
Re: Sarah A: Although this is musically based, as a self-made writer I completely understand this feeling of hitting a brick wall and being stuck. In order to get out of a creative funk I truly and wholeheartedly believe that you should take some time for introspection and realign your life. Any time you don't feel creative is a time that something within you is changing and you cannot pinpoint why. Don't stress yourself out with the constant need to make music just to make it. If you want it to be good and meaningful to yourself and to others, it has to come organically. Patience is a virtue and art doesn't always have to be some big thing that its put up to be.