When I set up my business almost a year ago a wise woman told me to avoid comparing what I was doing with anyone else. It is something I have been reminded about a lot. It isn’t just looking at what others are doing in business. We can all benefit from avoiding comparing our lives with those we see playing out on social media.
How many of us can say that we haven’t looked at Facebook or Instagram posts and thought ‘they are having a much better lockdown than me’? Carefully selected photographs and posts present a sleek image of happy people with happy lives eating beautiful food and looking continually attractive. Many years ago the people we would see were those in glossy magazines. It affected us but it really didn’t hit home in the same way as watching those who we know.
We know underneath it all that we are all struggling to deal with the impact of the pandemic. Nobody I have met yet has a perfect life. They are all trying to make the best of the situations that they face. They all have the same ups and downs that we all have. What we see is just a small part of their lives. The bit they are happy to show.
It is the same in business. I have had some interesting conversations about the images that those running businesses present. We know that it is not always as it may first appear. So what do I, and others, need to do about it?
Remember that ploughing your own furrow is why you went into business. Doing your own thing is a key part of what you do. Being you will be what attracts people to you. It is your life, skills and experience that they look to. If you are just doing what everybody else does then how will you get noticed?
Stop reading social media posts if you are having a difficult day. Recognise that looking through posts will potentially make things feel worse. Give yourself a day off and regain your inner strength before going back.
Take stock of all the positives that you are doing with your business. In the same way we can look at what we are grateful for in our lives we can do the same with our business. I keep a jar where I post in it little wins every time they happen. Whenever I feel I need a boost I can open the jar and pick out a piece of paper to read about something I have achieved.
One sure way to help me get through the crisis of confidence is to talk to others. Since I went out on my own and set up my business I have been lucky to have a great support network of people always there to give me a kind word or a bit of a kick when I need it. It was Advita Patel who gave me the words of wisdom about avoiding comparing what I was doing with others. There are many people who have been so generous with their time, support and wisdom.
As you head into the new week remember these are difficult and challenging times for everyone. The best way through it is to look after yourself and do things your way.
*If you are in need of some advice about building resilience I am running a free webinar with expert Emma Ewing on 2 March 2021 at 12noon. Details are here https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/139197251727