“Maybe by myself I’m ok, but against competition I have no chance.” I absolutely and sincerely just texted those words last week as I watched a branding lead go to another designer. This is the kind of terrible thoughts we get when we lack confidence and start comparing ourselves to others. This post is simply a little encouragement note I wanted to send to you all – and myself – on the constant struggle of comparing ourselves to the person next door who SEEMS to be more successful, more talented and happier.
I often see those articles about not comparing yourself to others and not worrying about pleasing everyone and so on. They are nice to read on the moment. However, sometimes one can’t help it but compare themselves to others, because the reality of others’ successes is directly connected to their failures. It happens more often than desired in business to be discouraged and get hit right where it hurts. Salt in the wound kind of pain, which is simply too hard to ignore. Our responsibility is the way we deal with such reality.
Yes, some people are farther than you on this entrepreneurial road but it definitely shouldn’t and doesn’t mean you have to give up or bring yourself down. You have a voice and a place on the market, there isn’t a limited amount available of success, talent, anointing, or whatever it is that you are pursuing. Remember the ones you are staring at, also have been at the starting line and had others running ahead of them. Cry it out if needed, brush it off and get back on the race. If anything use your competition as pacemakers. As that little dot in the horizon you are running towards.
Easier said than done for sure, I know how it feels my sweet friends. I have been dealing with this crazy whirlwind of comparison more than ever since I have transitioned from being a freelancer working for others to focusing on building my own brand. I don’t claim to have it all sorted out – trust me – but I am finding that focusing on what I do best, and on making a creative and personal connection with my clients is key. I would add that surrounding yourself with other business owners who can relate to your struggle is truly helpful. We all need a piggy back ride once in a while, don’t we?
I have learned so much about confidence the past three months. Not the kind of confidence that comes from others praising you, but the kind that is born from within, the kind that comes from knowing who you are and what you have to offer, and fully embracing that. I will keep pressing on and running the race, I hope you do too. Also, not everything you see displayed online is the accurate reflection of reality. It comes down to the fact that you have to accept and respect your own process. Don’t fight the current of your process, which will only drag you down, fight the comparison whirlwind. Chin up, there are beautiful things in your future.
REVERIE MINGLES: WHERE DO YOU FIND YOUR CONFIDENCE? WHAT HAS WORKED FOR YOU WHEN IT COMES TO COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS?