Do you compare yourself to others? [QTMM 9/20/17]

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"Why is he/she getting all the good projects?"

I often hear that from clients when I give them the assignment of researching their competition. (BTW, if you've been thinking of hiring a business coach now may be the right time for the free session I offer.)

But here's the thing: you have no idea what is going on behind someone else's web site or other self promotion.

Their fancy projects may have been done with no budget!

Or their big name clients may have been abusive.

You have no idea.

Comparing yourself to others is a trap! A total distraction from working on growing your business.

Of course you need to know whom you're competing against and how you are different.

But you must not allow yourself to get discouraged by what you imagine -- but couldn't possibly know.

The Comparison Trap is the topic of my latest podcast interview  with Lisa Mullis, part of the Experienced Newbies series about creatives making mid-career transformations but feeling insecure about the new venture. In fact, Lisa talked about a spin on the comparison trap in which she found herself comparing her newbie self to her old competent self and coming up short! 

Come on people, you know that it doesn't do any good to compare yourself.

Instead, stay focused on your tasks, be patient with yourself and learn from every single experience. That's the only way to improve.

I wrote about that in my "Letter to my younger self" for Titanides Live,  a for-women-only event I'm speaking at on October 17. Here's the gist:

Learning is everything. Nothing else matters.
Your biggest client doesn't matter. Writing books doesn't matter. Speaking engagements don't matter.
Your only goal should be to learn from absolutely every experience...
  • Learn to estimate better. 
  • Learn to negotiate better. 
  • Letter to manage your time better.
  • Learn to communicate more clearly.
Then move on to better clients who value you and will pay more.  

You can read the whole post here.

I also want to thank everyone who reached out during Hurricane Irma -- I did evacuate from Savannah and I'm still on the road on my way back! But we got lucky and there was only minor damage. That wasn't the case for many. So for this month's "End of Quarter Flash Sale" on Sept. 29, I'll be donating a percentage of the profits to Hurricane Irma Relief.

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