I want to get happier an understand if I am doing the right thing

I am a first year student in a fashion design university and at times feel if this course right one for me. I always wanted to do something in the creative fields and also enjoy my subjects and assignments but when I compare my work to my fellow batchmates, I feel that I am quite mediocre and that keeps me thinking if I would have done better in some other major. I struggle with a lot of self doubt and at times feel like I'm not doing enough and wish to be financially independent and keep my parents proud. I want to do a lot of things but don't know where and how to begin or take the first step.

At times I wish I was dead but I'm sure that I won't do such thing but want to get better and happier. I also want to workout and become stronger but have no motivation to do so. My parents push me to atleast go cycling but I just can't. I also stay in bed for 1-2 hours after I wake up in the morning and feel lazy to do anything.
Asked by j
Answered
12/06/2021

Hi J

I'm glad you have reached out with your questions and to seek the help and support of others as you explore these challenges, thoughts and feelings that are coming up in your life. Hopefully, it will help you to know that you are not alone with the self doubt part.  This is something we all experience at some level or another and notably quite often it is with very creative, high functioning individuals and often referred to as Imposter Syndrome. To understand more about self doubt from this perspective, I recommend a book by a colleague, Dr. Valerie Young, named "The Secret Thoughts of Successful Women " (and Men too) 

Another thing to consider J , is that the pace of the world these days does not have to be our pace...your pace. It seems in so many places we look, via television, social media, internet, there are dominating social or cultural messages that can create a perception in the mind that everyone else is doing better than us... is happier then us.. is more healthy then us, has whiter teeth than us, etc. It can also contribute to a perception that something is work with us , that we are not as good as the rest or just simply not "good enough". 

Cultivating mindful skills that help to strengthen our ability to notice the movement of our minds, to see our thoughts separate from ourselves can help create space to discern for ourselves how to respond to a given situation. To be able to "see" our thoughts, not "be" our thoughts. To be able to look "at" our thoughts" not "from" our thoughts. These same mindful skills can help us to be open to our emotions/ feelings without judgment and with self compassion and kindness toward self....even the painful and or distressing thoughts, and feelings. 

I would also offer the importance of knowing your values, understanding what matters to you and clarifying them as you move more toward young adult life. Our values and what's important and matters to us are the compass that helps set a direction in life to move toward the sort of person you want to be and a better life. Values are personal and what is valued by you may not be valued by parents, religious groups, culture or society. 

Having goals is also important and I see noted in your question that you have a number of them in mind. Reaching out for help and support can be very helpful and a sign of strength. When getting moving, it might be helpful to be mindful that getting started on a direction does not have to be BIG... sometimes a group of small steps is more easily attainable than trying to take one big step. As is said... "the journey of 10,000 miles begins with one step. " 

Best of luck to you and take good care

Dave