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I’ve been struggling with my anxiety for the past 7-8 months or so, and the reason for it is rather ridiculous and stupid (at least, to me it is): I started learning how to draw around the beginning of the year. I had bought a ‘how-to’ manga drawing book and supplies, and began posting my work on an art website I frequent. I also started watching other artists I admired, in the hopes of being inspired to continue to work hard and improve myself. However, it has instead seemed to only bring my anxiety back; some of the artists I watch have a pretty large following and produce some pretty high-quality content. Rather than looking forward to seeing them post new stuff, I’m instead riddled with angst every time I open up my notifications tab, almost praying to see that they haven’t posted anything recently. When they do post new things, my anxiety triggers, and I cannot for the life of me figure out exactly why. I have a few theories, but I’m not able to pinpoint the exact reason, as every time I sit down and think about it, my mind races and I can’t keep up. This experience is coupled with feelings of hopelessness, like I’m never going to reach the level of skill that I want to be at. As a result, I find myself losing the drive to continue doing my own thing. More recently, the thought of just quitting and never drawing again has come to mind on a few occasions. I don’t want it to come to that. I want to be able to continue to practice and to learn the techniques I need to advance. But I feel like I’m at a disadvantage, like I’m running a race and I’m two-steps too slow. I’ve talked with my therapist about this, and she’s confirmed what I’ve already known for quite some time; that I just need to go at my own pace and not worry about being as good as everyone else. I try to remember this whenever I have these feelings, but a part of me just can’t help it. I’ve fallen into this bad habit of comparing myself to others, and I can’t find a way to break free from it. Has anyone else had these sort of feelings before, and if so, how do you deal with them?