How To Get Out of the Instagram comparison trap and make the most of your time
Stick around to the end of the post for a motivational list I compiled from my most influential mentor.
It comes in waves. Every few months I will hit a road block in momentum with my blog and begin to spiral, losing motivation exponentially by the day. This is mostly in part due to my own over-thinking and perfectionistic personality getting the best of me. I always want to be the best at what I do and I am the first to admit that I get stuck in the trap of comparing myself to other bloggers big and small. I find myself feeling dare I say, *jealous* that they are getting to work with some of my favorite companies, or that they’re able to afford a professional photographer, or that they have the means (or connections) to go on amazing vacations, that they have so much more time in the day to dedicate to their business and for whatever reason seem to be thriving in all aspects of their lives.
First off, I can say all day “oh, but Instagram is just a highlight reel,” or “they’ve been doing it for longer.” There are so many ways to justify my feelings when in fact the only thing that is true is the fact that I am comparing myself to someone whose life is COMPLETELY different than mine! How is it even fair to myself to measure my personal success based off of another blogger who looks different than me, has a different style, lives in a different state, lives a completely different life? Comparison is toxic, but it is human nature and impossible to avoid no matter what you tell yourself. Sorry!
Although it is impossible to avoid these thoughts of measuring ones success to your own, I have found some methods of making it easier to push through these mental ruts and continue down a productive path instead of spending valuable time frittering away scrolling through social media, and wishing I had what someone else had. I tried to keep this brief, I know by now you can see how much I enjoy rambling. My best blogs tend to be the mind dump blogs, so bear with me! Here we go with the tips in no particular order of significance.
Write Down Your Goals
This may sound super obvious, but I have always been one to fly by the seat of my pants. I didn’t start writing my goals down and really thinking about what I was trying to achieve long-term with my blog (now business) until recently and it has been a game changer for keeping myself on track! First, I write down the overarching goal, then I break the goal down into manageable mini-goals and tackle each of the mini goals one at a time. This has helped me realize that my kinda scary, really huge, mountainous goals are in fact attainable, and much less intimidating. Instead of working for months to cross just one item off the list, I can cross off a goal every few weeks which is such a confidence booster and keeps me motivated on the bigger picture instead of stuck on feeling like I never get anywhere. Growth is slow, it’s a marathon not a race.
Create a Routine
Especially since having a baby and becoming a stay-at-home mom, I have realized that nothing gets done unless I stick to a schedule. The more I stick to my personal daily routine, the easier it is to convince myself to sit down and work. I have dedicated a daily time block to work, and if I skip out on it during the scheduled time, I may not ever find more time to get things done for the blog. Of course there is flexibility, and some days don’t go exactly as planned, but that’s life and adjustments are made to the schedule. If you all are keen on me getting into more detail about my daily routine just let me know!
Think About Your End Game
I have to give the hubby credit for this one. I was telling him about my blogging rut and my struggle with feeling not awesome about my content, and he asked me to tell him exactly where I saw myself in 5 years with my business. He wanted me to spell out my day for him from what kind of coffee I ordered to how many people I might have working for me, to where my office would be, to what kind of work I would be doing myself vs delegating to others. Every. Single. Detail. I was caught off guard because I hadn’t ever really thought about the direction I was taking my business since it has been a hobby for so long, I always just got inspired, took pictures, posted them and talked to you all in the comments! That was it!
The reason why it is important to know exactly where you want to be is not to end up exactly there, but to have something to work toward, reverse engineering your life, essentially. Each task you accomplish should be working toward that “end game” goal. Even the smallest details matter so much, it’s kind of like a dream board but spoken out loud. It’s up to you to become the person you want to be, in that position with those successes. Since I was able to tell him exactly where I wanted to see myself in 5 years I am now able to dedicate each piece of work to this “dream” and work towards something that feels a little more tangible since I can see it in my mind, instead of blindly flailing.
Remember Why Your Content is Unique
Your content is unique because you are unique. There is no other “you” out there and as long as you stay true to your personal style, and values, people will find you. It is much more fun to follow someone who is genuine and honest, not trying to emulate another blogger. I feel so cliche saying this because, well, DUH. But I still have to tell myself this, constantly. Compare yourself to others, because you will… but then move on and dedicate your time and energy to being yourself and sharing who you are instead of trying to be something that you will never be! I like to remind myself how valuable each minute of my day is. What is my worth and how much am I willing to invest into worrying or self doubt? I would much rather invest into learning, bettering myself, creating content that is true to me and working toward my goals.
Last but not least, I wanted to include a list of the tips for success that I learned from my mentor and great friend. We no longer work together but I still look up to her and I reference this list daily to keep myself balanced and motivated. Copy and paste this, put it in the notes of your phone and pull it up when you’re feeling unmotivated and remember that you have the full control to be successful in whatever you desire to do!
J’s Tips For Success:
Utilize your resources
You can do anything you want
Take risks with your business
No risk, no reward
Don’t overthink things
Always portray good body language (no crossed arms or legs)
Delegate: trust but verify
Fake it ‘til you make it
Never apologize unless you are truly at fault
Never say “it’s fine” if it’s not
LEARN from your negative experiences, don’t let them drag you down
Don’t second guess yourself
Take personal feelings out of the equation
The things that make you uncomfortable will make you a stronger leader
If you made it to the end of this post, YOU are the real MVP and I LOVE YOU! Drop me a comment so I know how awesome you are!
I really hope this mess from my mind made sense to you all. I probably should edit my posts before publishing them because sometimes I’ll go back and realize how all over the place I am with my thoughts and remember that not everyone is in my head and able to decipher my ramblings. If you have questions or comments don’t be shy! I love chatting with you lovelies on Instagram or email!
Thanks for stopping by.