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Old 01-19-2019, 08:36 AM   #11
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Default Re: How does one become more confident doing something you enjoy so you feel less anx

Regardless of the end result, do you find the process to be enjoyable?

It took me a full year to set up my art table again. As I am so out of habit the pieces I am thus far producing are garbage to me - even though people who have seen them have said otherwise. But the thing is, I have enjoyed the process these last few weeks. Besides, at least with my art, I can gesso white over the paintings that pain me and start all over again. The hobby is soothing me and I have noticed an increase in my confidence little by little since returning to a creative outlet.

So what I have to say is keep taking stabs at what gives you joy and practise, practise, practise. I think eventually it will put a smile on your face.
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Old 01-19-2019, 04:18 PM   #12
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Default Re: How does one become more confident doing something you enjoy so you feel less anx

I must not be able to communicate properly...I have no place to comfortably practice so practicing is even more miserable than it would normally be. I've always hated practicing. There is absolutely NOTHING fun about it most of the time. There is no creativity when I have to play music I didn't write/arrange or select. Playing with others is all about highlighting weaknesses and ignoring when practicing, even if you like playing the song, you feel awful every time you're not 100% perfect because it just proves everyone else right.

I've been told I was going to fail when I was young...I wasn't always allowed to play on the instrument I wanted to because I wasn't good enough on that instrument. I was just used to fill out instrumentation sometimes. I've just always been an object, a failure, someone incapable of succeeding no matter how hard they try...I just can't communicate this I guess.

As for the jam sessions, if I just had a friend to go with me and encourage me/support me, then I'd probably be fine. I've gone to them in the past, although it was with my ex who was a professional full-time musician for a while, so I'll always pale in comparison to him.
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Old 01-20-2019, 03:26 PM   #13
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Default Re: How does one become more confident doing something you enjoy so you feel less anx

Originally Posted by Skull&Crossbones View Post
How does one become confident enough in doing something that they're actually able to enjoy it rather than being anxious the whole time? How does one become better at doing something if they're too anxious to even practice the skills (because they're afraid of being judged or someone being mad)? It can't just be doing things over and over again or even doing them successfully. That hasn't worked. One failure is all it takes to destroy any amount of confidence built up.

I feel like I'm going to be ridiculed. I'm already held to much higher standards than other people, so I know I'll be called out if I'm anything less than PERFECT. Having that looming over my head, I can't really enjoy the activity, can I? Nor could I ever gain confidence.

I'm not sure if I need to be more specific but it makes me somewhat anxious to think about doing so.
I'm curious as to what activity you're concerned with, but I will try to help out the best I can.

I can relate to what you're talking about mostly. Even if I am doing something in isolation, I sometimes feel on edge the entire time as if I am on stage performing. This is incredibly anxiety inducing for me.

The best advice I have is that practice makes perfect and investment is key. I will use one of my hobbies as an example.

I have played billiards most of my life and like to think I am half way decent. But, no matter where I go or who I see play, I like to think that most people are better than me. Even though I enjoy the activity, I had to clear some serious milestones before I could even play in public. Here are a few things that have helped.

For one, I try to remember that people are inherently selfish no matter what. This means they are focusing on themselves way more than they are focusing on me. This can be very noticeable. I can be in a crowded pool hall having a god awful game, and nobody even notices me. Nobody is laughing, looking, or focused on me in the slightest. Once I realized this, I kept practicing. I dedicated hours to the craft. I would do this mostly on off-peak times when the venue would be the least crowded. For example, I would take advantage of day rates (playing from 11:00am-3:00pm), instead of going out on Saturday nights.

My next suggestion is investment. I have always been more confident of something that I want to be good at if I put something on the line. Keeping with the billiards example, I bought a pool cue. We'e not talking a simple cue here. I bought the one I wanted, the one that felt right, the one that made me feel GOOD. I now take that cue with me every single time I play. Making that invested not only boosted my confidence, but showed the "audience" that was "heckling" me that I meant business.

I hope you can take something from my experience. Best of luck!
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