As an author, comparison can be majorly detrimental to our progress. Along my own writing journey, I've caught myself comparing my business model, my educational content, my ideas, my website, my story, to other authors in and outside of my genre. I used to allow myself to get frustrated, then angry, and then hurt which lead to to a writing rut of feeling less-than, unqualified, and even lost my drive to keep pursuing my dreams. Fortunately, I've developed ways to dig myself out of that trap, and avoid it altogether most of the time.
Today I want to have an honest, real conversation about the beast that is comparison, because every single one of us deals with it at some point in our lives, and as writers and authorpreneurs - it's real and it's out there on social media every day.
Comparison is the thief of joy, and for creative writers and authors, it can wreak havoc on our mental state. Learn how to overcome the comparison trap and get back to being authentically you.
From my experience, many people have learned to normalize comparison. It becomes a normal occurance in every day life that fuels a sort of competition within us (that we tell ourselves we are already losing). But we absolutely don't have to live that way, or work that way. Let's consider the negative effects of comparison and you'll realize how important overcoming this trap really is to your author's journey.
You begin treating your journey like a race. And those we are comparing ourselves to don't even know it's a race - and still end up winning somehow.
Why? We set ourselves up with these unrealistic expectations, automatically putting ourselves in line for failure. You'll either exhaust yourself trying to accomplish things someone else worked hard for or you'll throw you hands up and quit altogether. You strive for someone else's successes rather than embracing your own journey.
Friend, you can't compare someone else's middle to your begining. Their starting point isn't your starting point, you haven't made their mistakes and learned their lessons.
Loss of Passion & Inspiration
I can tell you from firsthand experience how comparison can dull your light, your fire for your own work. Suddenly, everything you write is crap, your plot sounds stupid, and you fall out of love with your characters. Then you become emersed in trying to be as "good" as that other writer and lose sight of yourself and your project all together.
The Desire To Quit
And when it gets really bad... comparison will straight up suck the drive out of you. "I'll never be as good a writer as her...why bother?" "I'll never get a book deal... why bother?" "I'll never finish a series...why bother?"
The sad truth, friend, is that so many potentially amazing writers do quit. They get overwhelmed by all the to-dos that other authors seem to be doing and feel like they can't possibly keep up or compete with them, so they give up.
The good news is that the comparison trap can be managed, and even avoided. Here's how:
If you struggle with comparison, I want to encourage you to look within for guidance. Our intuition is often our best friend. Let it guide you. I filmed a video on how to smash comparisionitis that I shared within the Thriving Scribes Tribe a few months back but I wanted to share it here, as well. Take a watch to find out what you can do to help get yourself out of that place.
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