Low self-esteem can affect all of us – whether or not we’ve sold one or hundreds of products.
It can hit us when we’re doubting our creations and whether or not we (and our work) is good enough.
I struggle with low self-esteem most of the time, both when creating a handmade piece, taking and posting photos, selling items and making patterns. But it’s getting better day by day. I often doubt whether or not I’m doing it “right” and “to the standard”.
When I dig deeper it’s actually not the fear of having flaws but the fear of someone getting mad at me for not doing my job perfect – or just doing it better. I was used to having a mother who would yell and scream over the tinyiest things, and I was always blamed for something that I hadn’t even done.
Linking my fears and insecurities to the way I was treated as a child helps me to understand what and why I fear and how I can help myself.
We have one of the most freeing jobs out there, where we can work when and how we want – there are no rules in crafting. There are no standards that determine what is “good enough”. We determine that ourselves.
If we can be proud about our work even though it has flaws, we’ve taken a big step.
Here are 10 things to remember when you are dealing with low self-esteem (when running a crafting business):
- It’s not black and white. It’s possible to both be a business owner and have insecurities.
- You’re a human. Your business might be a business but you’re also a human being – not a robot.
- Customers don’t pay you to be perfect, they pay for something handmade and unique.
- Others don’t see what you see. The flaws that can seem like is the only thing you can see, might be invisible to others.
- You’re not alone. You can be pretty sure that every other crafter is also feeling insecure about themselves and their crafting.
- It is not bad or wrong to have insecurities. We learn to treat ourselves how we were treated as children, so if we want to change that we can start by noticing when and how we were critiqued as children and noticing when we start critiquing ourselves now.
- “And so what?”. Whatever your worry is, ask yourself: “And so what?”. Usually we build up our fear to being catastrophical, that the crafting community will banish us, that we will never get any customers again, that people will get angry at us for not doing it good enough. But really we are magnifying our fear to try and protect ourselves from what we fear the most.
- Be kind to yourself. Imagine that you are a 5 year old child that is making something – that child only needs encouragement – not someone (us) telling them that they are not good enough and that they should do better next time.
- If you really do want to be better at your craft, this doesn’t happen with force. But by being in the present, respecting ourselves, taking all the time we need, exploring without judging. resting, complimenting ourselves.
- Talk to others. Crafters, friends, business owners, customers – be open about your insecurities and you will notice that other people either don’t care about the things we worry about or they can recognise the same fears that you have. It’s a relief to be open about our insecurities and it’s inspiring to others too.
Have you ever felt low self-esteem about your work/yourself? And what is your best tip to dealing with it?
Leave a comment below!