“One day or day one. You decide” — Paulo Coelho
You can’t compare your success, or the path to it, to other people’s success. You don’t know their journey, how they got where they are today, or how much they struggled. You are also not going to find someone who is in the exact same place as you are. There may be similarities and some overlap, but it’s not a strategic plan to depend on another person to achieve your goals. The hard work comes from you.
Too often, I find myself comparing my progress to others: my favorite bloggers, podcasters, and other influencers who I mainly come into contact with online. I see loads of content posted, how they’re working on writing a book, trying all these new recipes, organizing meet and greets, sharing messages from their sponsors, and doing all these wonderful things. After I stopped the comparison, I took a step back and realized that their progress levels are much further along than mine. Their situation is also completely different. Some of these influencers are able to post more frequently and must make it a priority to write books, produce content on a regular basis, and try that new recipe because…well…it’s their job.
As badly as I would want to try to turn my passion into my job, I don’t see it happening at this very moment. It’s hard to make that transition when you work full-time and depend on regular income. It takes a while to get started and make a name for yourself. It also requires as much hard work as any full-time job to maintain relationships with sponsors and complete all your tasks. I don’t have the luxury or the willingness to a huge risk and gamble on my financial stability by pursuing what I truly love doing. It is going to have to happen slowly but surely for me until I figure out how I would even want to capitalize on my passions.
Part of me also wants to keep this blog—and hopefully one day podcast—away from that world for now. I respect the people who do it, but I don’t know that it totally fits with what I’m currently looking for. This blog started as an outlet for me to channel my positivity and make a change in my life that I knew I needed. It’s done a great job at being that supporting force and it’s incredibly rewarding to do it for pleasure whenever I please rather than working against a ticking clock.
Sometimes it feels challenging and I become complacent because my feed is flooded with other people’s accomplishments. It takes a second to realize that I have plenty of my own and my day 1 is completely different from someone else’s day 100. Take Instagram for example. When Instagram models started becoming a thing, I felt like all everyone ever talked about was wanting to look like one of those women. They compared themselves to their seemingly perfect physique and flawless bodies, but no one ever really acknowledged that those models worked their asses off to get where they were. When you’re starting out and just beginning, your process and “before” photos, if you will, are going to portray a much different image in week one, month one, and even year one.
When we focus too deeply on comparison, then we pull away from the true vision of what we want for ourselves. I think a large portion of progress has to do with balance and finding an equilibrium that works for each individual. I think a lot of people tend to forget, even if they’re past day 1 but not at day 100 yet (figuratively speaking, of course), that there are going to be bad days along the way. Preventing the bad days and challenges from becoming setbacks will ultimately shape the progress. Rather than a setback, it teaches us a lesson.
It’s always been hard for me to take my own advice but writing this blog has helped me better understand how I can become more in tune with my progress and less focused on comparison. Here’s to building progress and creating balance!