I Love to Create But Why Do I Never Feel It Is Good Enough?

My whole life, I have loved to write, bake, sew and draw.  Basically, I love to be creative. I can’t remember ever NOT being this way.  I took art classes all through high school. I majored for a minute or two in art in college.  I was accepted into a commercial art program after showing my portfolio. But, I have never felt good enough.  That is one reason I never attended that commercial art program. Yes, I regret that to this day!

I drew a lot in the old days.

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I always enjoyed doing different things…From the caricature of Johnny Carson to a white pencil on black paper, like this one of Bette Davis.

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We did a lot of ink drawings in college.  It was one of my favorite things to do and produced one of my favorite drawings that I have done, of this bone.

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For what ever reason, it seemed I would notice that someone always did better.  Whether it was my older sister, or someone in class, or now, people I have found on the internet. It just always made me feel not good enough, inadequate. I even tried to pick up a pencil and sketch book a few years ago and produced this.

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Not bad for not doing it for a long long time.  But you know, not ‘good enough.’  I don’t think I have drawn much since.  Not for lack of trying, that is for sure!

I also have had a knack for sewing.  Back when people my age were in junior high, we had to take home ec. So I have been sewing since 7th grade.  I always had an eye for picking the right fabrics, and could sew things fast and do it well.  I even majored in textiles for a minute also.

Recently I started sewing again but I decided during two different fundraisers to make a quilt for each, never have done it before. I started without a clue and finished fast. I was somewhat pleased, but you know by now, I didn’t feel like they were good enough.

The first one:

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The second one:

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Then there is the ‘big’ one. Writing. I have done this as long as I remember too.  Back in high school I took Creative Writing and did the short stories and poems.  I was not only the illustrator for our high school writing magazine but had some poetry in it as well.  I was on the school newspaper and wrote articles and reviews and I was my high school yearbook editor.  In college I took a writing course and did well. It was one of my favorite classes.  I seriously considered majoring in Journalism or some other writing major. And you know it, I never felt good enough.

I kept journals my whole life just so I could keep writing.  I had an essay about Jamie published in a book a long time ago.  I did author a cookbook for our team to raise funds for Relay for Life and of course if you know me or have read around here, I published a book on my journey through a cancer diagnosis and treatment.

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I have a past blog with one of my short stories that I wrote a few years ago.  I like it. Again, I wonder..is it good enough?

So now, I am thinking, where did that feeling come from?  Just what IS good ‘enough’?  And just WHO made it all a competition? I am not sure if it is a natural feeling that us ‘creative’ people have or it was learned somewhere in my life.  I am sure no matter what we do, we could feel there is always someone who can and has done it ‘better’. But SO WHAT?

I love being able to do what I do.  I want to be able to not compare it to others.  I should only think about the satisfaction it brings me.  I AM very proud of the things I have done. I will try to tell myself, it IS good enough. It should be. I want it to be.

And I will hit the publish button for this. I guarantee, I will feel it wasn’t ‘good enough’ as I often do after I hit publish.  I will wonder why more aren’t reading or commenting and I will think someone else could have done it better.

Do you feel good enough?  Should we even worry about that?  Does it make us better? Or do the opposite? What do you think?

14 comments

  1. None of us ever feel our writing is “good enough” which is why we need to keep posting and writing – because plenty of others will think our writing is wonderful. We are our own worst critics!

  2. I made and sold a bunch of bracelets last summer. Sold enough to send 2.5 children to camp. But in my mind, I keep seeing them break or something, and the person who bought it thinking I am a doofus. Oh well…

  3. Joy, you are so multi- talented that you should NEVER question yourself. Keep up developing all your gifts!

  4. As +Sharon Greenthal, we are our own worst critics. But, we need to keep going and the more we do, the more we improve. The more we do, the easier it becomes. The more we do, the more people will see and appreciate our work.

  5. Just give your best and don’t try to be the best. It’s not really good to always try to be better since doing well is often as good on our best days as it is on our worst. 🙂 I hope you catch my drift….you’d better. Oh, well….have a good day and even a better tomorrow.

  6. Dear one. It’s just the way it is. Guess who thought he was a failure his entire life? Charles Schultz, the creator of Peanuts! keep expressing yourself. it’s who you are!

  7. Yes, we are our own worst critics. I am always editing my work, even after it’s posted. But I”m getting better at being imperfect. I like to tell people I am perfectly imperfect.
    The truth is…there will always be someone who writes better, sings more beautifully, paints with more dimension and emotion, someone who is healthier, wealthier….well, you get the idea. But there won’t be anyone who is better at being YOU than you. Happy New Year. And trust me, you are enough. (This is my motto this year.)

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