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04 Oct 2013 - 16:45107888
Low self-confidence?
I wasn't really sure where to put this thread?

I don't have a lot of confidence in myself when I cosplay. I cosplay with a lot of exceptionally good cosplayers who believe they aren't good and I really struggle with the most simplest of cosplays. I know people won't say it, but I see the cosplay community being bias all the time.

I see a lot of posts about 'equality' and 'confidence' but I don't believe it. I want to cosplay pretty things, cute things, even do lolita but I'm too afraid.

I'm sure something like this has been posted before, does anyone have any pointers for this? I'm a procrastinator as well, and that will never change (I'm a perfectionist that panics and cries. OTL) So, does anyone have any positive motivation for me? Anything would help. I'd be very grateful!

04 Oct 2013 - 17:29107889
There's no quick fix, and all of these are a lot easier to say than to do, but nevertheless:

Fake it
- Real confidence is almost indistinguishable from fake confidence. Put on a brave face, and take regular breaks from crowds to de-stress and prepare for the next bout of socialising

Stop comparing yourself - there will always be someone better. Don't worry about whether you are as good as another cosplayer (odds are they are stressing out about being as good as someone else!), just have fun and ask advice of people who's costume you like.

Forget the insults/remember the compliments - join the compliments thread, or save the nice things people say about your costumes and read them when you are feeling low.

Remember no-one started perfect - if you are insecure about a costume, consider it a learning opportunity. Wear it anyway, and think about how to make your next costume even better.

Cosplay with friends - share your feelings with them. They will find a way to make you happier about your costume. And in return you can reassure them too if they get nervous.

04 Oct 2013 - 20:19107892
Haha, my doctor once said to me that she'd never met anyone with such low self esteem as me, so there's my "one thing I am good at" lol! But no seriously, I agree with the points above, especially this one: "Fake confidence." So many people think I am a confident friendly person, when really I am so scared inside and think I look/sound like an idiot. But the more you fake confidence (not be brash like Gaston, but just seem happy and comfortable) the more you become that way!

I think with all kind of issues like this, the more you do things (such as cosplay), the more you get used to doing it and instead of it being a scary and different thing it becomes part of your comfort zone, so you feel more secure in it, therefore less anxious and more confident. I hope that helps somewhat!

05 Oct 2013 - 09:03107900
What these guys said. What I'd like to add (that I find extremely effective, as I'm a pro-procrastinator of low-self-esteem myself) is... you gotta jump in the deep end. GO FOR IT. Go crazy. Don't be afraid to aim big with your cosplay. Cosplay rocks, good or bad. You can do it.

~ express yourself ~
05 Oct 2013 - 16:27107914
'What you practise is what you become' is something that I read in a Paul McKenna book, also this small extract which came to mind:

I never cease to be amazed at the number of people who come up to me and say 'I'm just not a confident person.' When I ask them if they're sure about that, they boldly declare, 'Of course I am!' The problem isn't that that the lack confidence - it's the fact that they're confident about the wrong things

I probably would have fallen into the same trap if he had asked me this, but it makes it pretty clear that we all have the ability to have confidence, we already have it but so many of us misuse it.
Start telling yourself the opposite the second you have a negative thought enter your head. For every one negative comment you repeat a positive five times over to cancel it out. You've forced yourself to believe that you're not confident or not good enough, so you can undo it by doing the opposite!
There's nothing wrong with paying yourself a compliment without being prompted either, be kind to yourself. There must be some things that you like about yourself? Write them down and take a good look at that list whenever you feel down!

05 Oct 2013 - 18:30107918
I know exactly how you feel. Honestly, I've considered dropping cosplay because of it. Sometimes I don't leave the house or refuse to look into mirrors because my self confidence is so low.

But an important thing to remember is that you were born unique and born as you and that is beautiful, you shouldn't need to be anybody else to be happy. That's the way they were born and this is the way you were born, you're you and you are wonderful. It's hard, I know, but comparing yourself to other people won't ever get you anywhere.

Also remember that just because you see yourself one way, doesn't mean everybody else does. It's entirely subjective. I think I'm hideous and I could point out 1000 things that are unappealing about me but that doesn't mean everybody else who sees me does and the same goes for you.

Last edited by ToroSonyCat (05 Oct 2013 - 18:30)
06 Oct 2013 - 08:22107931
"A real artist is never pleased with their work" This is a quote I heard when I was in art college. I think it can be related to cosplay. There are some people out their who think they are better then everyone else with all their confidence and a lot of the time they are the ones with the terrible cosplays. When you see a fault in your cosplay you strive to make it better, always improving so that in your eyes you can become better, and those are usually the cosplays worth looking at.

I used to have an insane amount of low self-confidence, where I would leave the house all in black, XXL tops and really baggy trousers. But then I started cosplaying, I found that people didn't really care what you looked liked or how you behaved just as long as you were polite. Having people compliment me was really surprising but it also really helped me. One day I somehow woke up and thought "F**k it" and somehow stopped caring about a lot of things, and that's when i started really enjoying life, now I have so much self-confidence. (Although I still have those days when I wake up and I look in the mirror and see every fault in myself, but my friends really help me with that)


09 Oct 2013 - 16:58108015
Thank you everyone. You really have gave me such wonderful advice!

I'll do my best to take all your comments on board, I've saved them as a reminder, I hope you all don't mind? I think I'll need the boost every now and then.

You're all lovely and inspirational people. Thank you very much, I feel less alone with how I feel towards cosplay at the moment.

Thank you very much, all of you!

09 Oct 2013 - 18:33108016
I've been witness to the divide in Cosplayers (more experienced vs less/better costumes vs less etc) & frankly to not put too fine a point on it... we're a bunch of nerds who don't fit in with "normal" society at the best of times. We should embrace each other for our love of dressing up & having a giggle. I saw "professional Cosplayers" at WLFCC who were selling signed pictures of themselves (sorry if you're reading this but I just don't get it) almost being idolised & papped like celebrities are. That's not why I got into it - I like the charity Cosplayers & aspire to be in the 501st Legion. Yes, I love it if someone compliments my costume, I worked hard on it. Yes, I love it if someone wants to have their picture taken with me but that's not WHY I do it. I do it to meet like minded people who are thought as weird as I am & misunderstood by friends who don't cosplay.

What I'm trying to say, if you excuse my rant is basically f*** anyone who looks down on you or makes comparisons. They're not worth it & probably more insecure than you ever are. Rise above it & if you ever see me out, come & say hi & know that I'm just there for a giggle & probably have a hip flask stashed in my costume somewhere!

09 Oct 2013 - 23:06108024
Quote PandoraCaitiff:

Fake it
- Real confidence is almost indistinguishable from fake confidence. Put on a brave face, and take regular breaks from crowds to de-stress and prepare for the next bout of socialising

This has always been my not-so-secret tactic

A slender flame burns at the edge of my heart
Without warning, it spreads into a burning passion
03 Nov 2013 - 17:02108843
Fake it till you make it.

I've got decent confidence in my ability to make things but cosplay is a weird one for me. I loathe having my picture taken in public, but I don't mind cosplay, because I always think people are taking pictures of 'the costume' rather than me.

Cosplay has no rules, only a general tacit understanding. In that regard it's not that much different to regular fashion or dressing for regular life.

All aboard the Cosplay Cruise! www.cosplaycruise.co.uk
03 Nov 2013 - 19:25108848
I find faking confidence helps with the flow a bit. I get nervous in social settings so I try to reverse that and think 'how can I be positive in this situation?' It can be easier said than done at times but I find it changes my mood and not only does the added confidence makes me feel better as a person but I get more confidence in my coslay skills.

I find that giving nice comments to coslayers is a good way for this. Not only its your own well being you are improving, but you are also making someone else day in the process. On the plus side they would often compliment on your own costume in return

I had a lovely conversation in the bar at one point at Kitacon last year and it opened my eyes about the potential that all cosplayers have and we shouldnt allow others to judge us as such, that no one is perfect and a reminder the majority of us is friendly and accepting of eachover since we all came from so many backgrounds in life

I do admit when I started cosplaying I had thoughts along the lines of 'maybe cosplay isnt right for me' during my few events since everyone else seemed far superior at the time but despite that I persevered knowing that someday I will feel good about myself and now I see myself in a social setting I genuinely feel apart of.

Confidence can take a bit of trial and error, and sometimes it could take a while for it to become consistent, but if you keep trying to find how you feel good you will get there! I see it as a journey of self discovery and its better to do it and gain than give up in the process and lose what you get or what you could have gotten

Alcon 2016

Last edited by White Tigress (03 Nov 2013 - 19:27)
03 Nov 2013 - 22:36108851
I find that you need to enjoy life to become confident in it. So if you ever feel down look at your life and start cutting the crap out.
I made some harsh choices a few years back and ever since I have been a whole lot happier, which in turn has increased my confidence!!
When I am happy I have less care about things and focus on negatives less.
So maybe this could work for other people?

In terms of cosplay, confidence is a hard one because it is a visual hobby, we dress in costume to look a certain way and it can be very hard to believe people when they say 'you look like that character' or 'your costume is great' because we judge ourselves the most harshly!!
I think learning to except you are not perfect and neither will your costumes be perfect, learning to except people's opinions and compliments and focusing on what you have achieved through cosplay instead of what you didn't achieve is important.

Hope that helps/makes sense!!
Cosplay is all about the fun and the passion imo

10 Nov 2013 - 14:25108989
Well, I have very rarely cosplayed (only twice or thrice, I think), and each time they were terrible, terrible cosplays. But still I would be incredibly happy about them and I would even participate in the contests, where I mostly danced ridiculously dances.

My point? You don't have to have the greatest cosplay. There are some people out there that are incredibly good, and compared to them, everyone else is just not good enough. But that shouldn't be the reason why you cosplay. You should do it because you enjoy it, because you feel really comfortable with it. That way you will actually look better, as people can actually feel your confidence. That is the way to create a really good impression.

tl;dr: Cosplay everything you want and be happy with it. You'll enjoy it much more that way, too!

01 Feb 2014 - 00:46110968
I struggle with confidence too. So much so that I'm only just getting into cosplay in my mid twenties. But I've taken the first step! So it's nice to meet you all and hopefully will have some ideas to work on soon x

01 Feb 2014 - 14:00110972
Oh god I have no confidence at all! I always fake confidence. Most people tell me I come across as confident and bubbly but in actual fact I can get spooked by rain hitting my window! (long story ¬_¬)
I think the trick is to surround yourself with people who will look out for you. I tend to stay with friends who know the warning signs of an 'Emu freak out' as we call it, so they can look after me.
Friends are your best ally! Use them!

15 Feb 2014 - 04:09111280
worry about yourself and what you do, not what others do. I'm not really one to talk as I too compare myself to others and constantly think every does things better but then I think that what I do is good, may not be as good as some people but then I may be better at other things that they lack skill in. hope this helps

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