Clare Kayden Hines’ Comics Deal With Anxiety

Illustrator and writer Clare Kayden Hines has been working in the entertainment industry for 10 years before joining Apple’s Video Partnerships team. She left Apple last year in order to work independently on her own content that she shares with followers on Instagram.

In an interview for The Mighty, she revealed that she has always been suffering from anxiety. Many of her illustrations deal with this and similar topics. The artist hopes her illustrations will show people the funny side of these struggles or at least show them that they are not the only ones fighting them.

“My art is my reaction to the pressures and expectations I feel in my own life. It allows me to express my frustrations and anxieties out loud and also laugh at them,” she said. “Humor helps me cope so much with my anxiety and stress. If I had a choice between laughing at myself or taking myself seriously, I’d always rather laugh.”

See her work below and follow her Instagram for some amazing content on your feed.

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Hellooooo to everyone who found me from my Huffington Post interview! I talked about ANXIETY. I’ll link to the article in my story! ⠀ I’ve always been an anxious person, but it wasn’t until recently that I was diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder. When I was younger, I used my anxiety to motivate myself. I’d tell myself, “if you don’t study for this test you’ll never get into college” or “you need to get at least 8 hours of sleep or tomorrow will be ruined.” I used negative self-talk to scare myself into getting stuff done. In some ways, it was a part of who I was, & I was actually afraid I couldn’t accomplish as much without it. ⠀ When I got older, I continued using my anxiety to drive myself—but this time it backfired. I worked myself into a place where I no longer had control of my thoughts & couldn’t turn them off. I developed insomnia—at one point I couldn’t fall asleep for 4 days straight—I got rashes everywhere & had stomach issues (I had no idea until later they were anxiety-related). The littlest things felt overwhelming, like booking a flight, tripping over something in my apartment, or if I couldn’t find a matching sock. Even though I knew rationally that these things weren’t a big deal, I felt like I wasn’t in control of myself anymore. ⠀ I finally saw a doctor who connected the dots & diagnosed me with generalized anxiety disorder. At first I didn’t believe her—I told her I was always an anxious person, but never thought I had ANXIETY. She told me she’d seen many women develop anxiety later in their 20s & that this was pretty common. ⠀ It’s a constant process to manage my anxiety, but I now realize that it’s not worth sacrificing my health or driving myself into the ground for any accomplishment. We can only withstand so much pressure & negative talk before it backfires & impacts our bodies & minds. ⠀ I wanted to share my experience, because the more we talk about the things we feel ashamed of, or think are abnormal, the more we’ll realize we’re not alone. If all of us shared how we felt with each other, we’d realize all these stigmas weren’t actually stigmas—they’re normal & common. And they’re only as scary and powerful as we let them be.

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