I feel fear. I hear unproductive criticism. I have self doubt. I’m insecure. And unmotivated – why even try? And it’s downright shitty.
Hello, blogging jealousy.
Social media has made it supa’ easy for us to compare ourselves to others and see how much we suck in our own lives. At least that’s how I felt last week. I opened a Facebook Group and the first 5 posts were from other entrepreneurs who hit the $1million mark last year and how they did it working only with the perfect clients, on the perfect schedule, with their perfect white smiles. And all I could think was “I haven’t even brushed my teeth yet today.”
With the click or swipe or scroll of a track-pad, it takes seconds to discover how great everyone has it (they don’t), how quickly they rose to stardom and success (they didn’t), and how their life is peachy-keen-pinch-my-ass-perfect (it isn’t).
Deep down we must know better. The people we feel blogging jealousy of, are just human after all.
Everybody poops, right?
Nevertheless, we turn on our computers, open the internets and suddenly we’re raging with envy of Betty Cooper who is blonde, thin & tall, fabulously rich & popular, has the most beautiful car/kitchen/home office/husband/kids/bank account/porn-perfect-thigh-gap, and whose posts and updates get more shares, comments and viral influence than Jesus when he turned water into wine.
Betty becomes the epitome of everything we want and at the same time, everything we want to bitch slap with a wet fish.
I get it. I do. I’m a 36 year old woman who’s 5’4″ and weighs 15-20 lbs more than I want to, with short brown hair and glasses. I have a home-based website design, copy writing & mentoring business which = donning over-sized PJ pants (or lack-thereof) and dirty-ass hair because I’ve been “hustling” for 3 days without a shower, while avoiding the dirty dishes in the sink and scrubbing the toilet, and my bed hasn’t been made in over a week. Oh, did I mention I’m single too? And without kids (thank Christ).
I’m not exactly an Instagram story waiting to be told.
…My point is that it’s easy as fuck to log onto Instagram or Facebook or view that person’s most recent blog post and see all the 6-figure-glitter shooting out of her asshole while I wonder if mine has become home to a family of elves while I’ve been trying to figure out how to “make it”.
Friends. We don’t need to give up or overcome blogging jealousy – it isn’t dirty. Unlike my bed sheets. It’s a natural human emotion. And it’s my belief we can use its power for good and not only be more successful, but feel more confident and inspired too!
…I swear. My ass is fine. And yeah, I admit I poop too.
Blogging jealousy as a power for good.
Instead of shying away and hiding blogging jealousy at the back of your mind-closet, when embraced, it can actually be a powerful tool in your work!
That is, blogging jealousy can reveal a lot about yourself in ways that help you not only move forward, but thrive!
Comparing ourselves to others is inevitable. The important thing is to do so within context. Everyone is at a different stage in their journey with a unique end goal. And when we feel envious of other bloggers, we also find clarity and inspiration. Use that!
If we feel jealous, it’s because someone has something we want. Or is doing something we want to do. in this sense, jealousy can inspire us to try harder, experiment with strategies we wouldn’t have otherwise, and grow.
Basically, these folks we admire and feel jealous of ask us to try harder and aspire to something greater than what we’re currently doing. They challenge us to be better.
It isn’t enough (or okay) to out-right copy someone else, but blogging jealousy gives us the chance to see what’s possible. And what we truly want.
A little self reflection never hurt anyone, so when you find yourself feeling all envious, pay attention to those feelings and ask yourself WHY you’re feeling this way – put it into context.
This is an opportunity to grow, learn and achieve clarity.
Blogging jealousy helps you know they-self.
I know it’s supposed to be “thyself”, but hang with me a sec.
In examining your feelings, you establish where you begin and end, and what inspires you about other’s journeys. And by taking the time to investigate that, you also get to know a little bit about where the person who inspired you (to feel jealous) begins.
So you get to know them. Yourself. And what’s authentic to your journey. And from there, you can then use that jealousy to move toward what you really want, your goals, your happy, and less bullshit.
And that’s pretty kick ass.
Don’t let blogging jealousy ruin your relationships (or opportunities).
Blogging takes a lot of fucking time. Anyone who’s been doing it for more than a snake-shake knows this. That’s why it’s so important to maintain a careful balance within your relationships – particularly between yourself and 2 different groups of people.
1. Competition (hint: aka community!).
When we feel blogging jealousy the first impulse is to hate on the person who’s further along in their journey than you. We get all twitchy and want to know their secrets and hide our own. In that moment, we see them as competition we need to beat down with a big stick!
But let me propose this: What if instead of hiding away and shrinking into a pool of insecurity, fear and they-loathing, you reached out, followed them on social media + shared them in your newsletter, and told them how much you value them? What if instead of hiding behind your computer screen in the back end of your blog, buying into the content myth, you joined some productive Facebook groups and started asking for advice and offering it?
What if you chose to see the competition as community?
In doing so, we not only elevate our own journey and experience and feel less yucky, but we also help each other become more successful. We build relationships. And when we all succeed, there’s more kindness, support and opportunities to be shared.
2. “Real life” relationships.
Get the ef offline.
Hang out with non-entrepreneurs and non-bloggers.
Disconnect and shut the damn phone off already. The world is not going to end because you didn’t respond to a tweet the second it came in.
Make real world experiences a priority – this helps keep the fantasies created on social media and related blogging jealousy (i.e. Betty Cooper) in perspective.
Just like jealousy is a natural human emotion, feeling connected to others is a natural human NEED. So do it – nurture your relationships both online and off because you not only need it, your blog and business does too.
Success isn’t a finite resource – blogging jealousy is.
Success is not scarce.
It may take some experimentation to figure it out and even then, what worked for a while may (won’t) work forever. So it’s a constant process of re-evaluating what makes you happy, what makes your readers or clientele happy, and what success looks like to you.
Blogging jealousy is finite.
Nobody can take away your truth – you get to decide the kind of content you produce and life you design. That’s up to you. Who you are, is your choice. And when you’re true to you, that alleviates a lot of the symptoms of blogging jealousy – the fear, unproductive criticism, self doubt, insecurity, unmotivated and downright shitty feelings. Because you aren’t trying to be someone else – you’re just you. And you motha’ fucking own that!
Hell, let’s be honest: Nothing is original anymore. Nothing. If you want to create a recipe for bat guano pancakes because it’s so original and totally different, let me pop your fancy-pants-gross-breakfast balloon buddy … It’s been done before.
The uniqueness – the thing that makes your blog or business special and successful – is you. And when you fully and completely commit and invest you in your blog or business, that’s gonna mean something to someone.
Dudes. There’s an audience for everyone – so be uniquely and authentically you.
You cannot control how others see you or what others do – you can’t control their success. or yours.
Control is a weapon of mass distraction.
The only thing you can truly control is how you behave. So focus on you and how you can serve others (aka focus on the damn quality and value you put out).
Show up. Be you. Honour your feelings – jealousy or otherwise. Interrogate them a little bit and give credit where credit is due. Do the work. Consistently and over time. Give back to your community. Get offline and nurture your relationships. And that blogging jealousy can be used for good.
Do you ever feel blogging jealousy? How do you deal with these feelings? What else would you add to the conversation? Leave a comment below or please shoot me an email and tell me! I wanna hear from you.