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Angryatheist50
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04 Aug 2016, 3:54 am

Hello, first time posting on Wrongplanet. Quick info about myself. I discovered I had Aspergers when I was in highschool after my older brother was diagnosed with it. Prior to that, I was made to believe I had Tourrette syndrome since that was what my dad was diagnosed with when he was younger. Anyway, let me discuss my question. As far back as I can remember, I tend to have these mood swings that I can't really explain too well. If I could try, I would say they're usually triggered by my special interest (which is drawing). For the most part, I'm "satisfied" with the way I draw. I'm not in love with my work but I don't hate it either. I'm a professional cartoonist as my occupation so I'm constantly drawing daily. Usually, whenever I hit a road bump in my artwork (be it one little mistake such as wonky anatomy or something a bit larger like struggling with a panel or even looking at another artists work that I think is better than mine) I tend to go on what I can only describe as my "Mr. Hyde" persona. This is when I go on an artistic rampage and trash all of my work that I'm unsatisfied with as well as compulsively redrawing previous pages I had already drawn. These mood swings last from a few minutes to a few hours to as long as a day. I'm completely irrational whenever I'm in this type of mood and the only thing that's on my mind is how inadequate my artwork is. It's really a compulsive feeling that doesn't stop until I've either fixed the problem or I sleep it off. I hate these feelings and want to know more about what they are. Do other aspies go through this? Is it even related to aspergers? If I could give an example of what it's like imagine a rope of Christmas lights with one dead light. When this happens, all the other lights following it die out too and can only be fixed when a new light is put in its place. That's literally how I feel when I go through these mood swings. I don't feel better until that one error is fixed.



RabidFox
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04 Aug 2016, 11:40 am

That sounds like me when I over obsess about my writing. It doesn't matter whether it's typical talking back and forth or a story. I can't stand even one little mistake, like a misspelled word or "goofy" grammar. I have a very strict idea about what grammar should sound like.

I went many years without making even one spelling mistake. Recently, as I care less and less, I find myself actually making mistakes. It's new for me, but it doesn't make me feel like the whole world is ending any more. However, it does still seriously get on my nerves.



ToughDiamond
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04 Aug 2016, 1:34 pm

I used to do something like that when I recorded vocal parts for my music. First I'd raise my hopes and think I was going to do a perfect take. I'd apply such ridiculously stringent standards that I couldn't possibly achieve them. Then reality would smack me in the face and I'd start feeling really stressed and angry. So I'd immediately redouble my efforts and end up trying too hard, and it would either get worse or just not get any better. Luckily I'm not really the type to start breaking things when I'm upset, so I didn't make a bad situation worse, it just used to stress me out and bring me down. I'd take a break, come back to it, and just keep trying. Eventually I'd get some kind of a compromise between perfection and what was feasible for me to achieve, and I'd feel better, but I've never ended up particularly proud of any of my recordings until some time after I've finished them. At the time, it's as if I'm using a microscope and a strong light to show up all the "dirt," and all I can see is the deviation from the ideal I was aiming for. Later on when I've put the "microscope" away I hear it more like normal people would, and I realise it's actually fairly good.

The mood swings have improved over the years. I started to notice the pattern, and these days I try not to get sucked into the perfectionism thing quite so much, and I've learned to have more faith in my ability to eventually do a good job, so when the first takes sound weedy it doesn't get me down so much. I think Aspies often have this powerful urge to tackle a problem "full on," it's hard to just put it down before it's been put right, we tend to fret until we've fixed it.



Angryatheist50
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04 Aug 2016, 1:51 pm

Thanks for the replies. Upon doing more research I've found that this tendency must be out of a perfectionist mindset that I've given myself. When I was in high school, I remember watching a friend of mine draw a picture of a girl (can't remember all of the details) but it was so perfect in my eyes that from then on I've strived to be as good of an artist as she was. This mentality has followed me to this day where I still don't think I've passed that level of perfection. My artwork fustrates me because of this and I usually have a hard time coping with my weaknesses. I've always thought they were meltdowns from what I've read since they leave me at an irrational state of mind that I can only recover from after some calming down. Knowing that it's out of my desire to achieve perfection makes me feel slightly better but it doesn't help me deal with it. I'm still going to have episodes where I get so fustrated I'll never want to draw again and that feeling scared the hell out of me. I wish there was some way I could rid myself of this feeling and just be happy with what I've got.