It may surprise some of you to know that I actually have a lot of self-esteem issues. This week I’ve been feeling pretty bad–Con Crud followed immediately by a period–not just in general, but specifically about myself. About midway through Skepticon (which was amazing), I found myself growing evermore self-conscious about the art I was trying to sell.
It seemed like everyone I wanted to show my work to took a cursory glance, made a generic remark about them being cool and then their attention was lost. It’s discouraging to me, and calls into question my confidence that what I make is beautiful, unique, and interesting. I did make one sale, to one of my best friends.
I was unknowingly rude to a friend and coworker this week (which is something I’m famous for), and didn’t notice until he brought it up. In a subsequent apology, I made a comment like “yaaay, friends, I have them!” It makes me wonder to myself if I’m really that insecure about making and keeping friends, or if that’s a hat I wear because it’s endearing. Turns out, I’m just that insecure.
I have a history of being incredibly awkward and doubtful of my own abilities. I question a lot of what I do/say before, during, and after it happens.
Am I making this person uncomfortable? Am I being way too open about my sex life? Did I mishear what that person said and thus my response made no sense? I can’t tell Chris that, he’ll be upset/won’t understand. Did my friend who has an ED just cringe when I said I used to be a fat shamer? Should I have stopped flirting with that person way sooner than I did? Am I being too hyper? Do I seem disinterested?
Seriously. All the time.
Am I asking for too much? Am I being too needy? Am I contributing enough? Is my writing too simplistic, or too verbose?
I could go on with this. I have a terrible track record about keeping friends, and I only have one long-term friend still around. So, that gives me a bunch of weird regarding making new friends and having those relationships.
I have a history of pissing people off without meaning to or realizing that I was being offensive. It’s not something I have a solution for readily.
But really, this is about my art. It started with my art and that’s the part that needs attention. I can’t solder until I make more money and accumulate the equipment required. Until then, I have to work with unimpressive, flat pieces. I’m not confident in my ability to gain interest and actually sell anything, so any tools I get right now will come from my regular, already barely sufficient paycheck.
I’m trying to come up with a business name and can’t.
Amy invited me to write a guest post on Mad Art Lab, but I’m not really sure where that will get me or if she’s comfortable with me using the post to plug my work. I’d really love some promotion. Probably what I need to do is make a shit ton of relatively simple pieces to build an inventory so I actually have some product available. I’m worried about doing that and not being able to sell any–thus increasing the number of unsold pieces of jewelry I’m accumulating.
It sucks. Really I need to email Amy and see if she has any advice for me. It’s difficult when my confidence is shot.
When I say that I’m awesome or something to that effect, I definitely don’t mean it. It makes me sound a bit conceited, but mostly makes me seem self-assured and confident. I don’t really believe it, though. I actually have an incredibly low self-esteem and I have a hard time feeling particularly positive about myself, who I am, and my abilities. I’m constantly over or under estimating myself and how others see me.
Thanks to all of you who seem to see something good in me. Maybe one day your positive comments will make me realize I’m not a terrible person.