We live in a world where it is really easy to see how other people are doing, check out their highlight reel, and draw comparisons between them and our own writing journey.
But, that way unhappiness lies! Author comparison is a negative mindset to be in, so here are some tips on avoiding the pitfalls.
Remember, that stuff you see being shared by your favourite author/writing friend is the highlight reel.
They aren’t necessarily sharing their struggles, the nights they’ve spent fretting about their work, the rejections they received before they got published. All those issues are very real and happen behind the scenes.
Of course, they want to share their success and that is awesome, but when you see a barrage of published books, what looks like endless easy writing days, and more besides, it can sting. It’s okay for that to sting, you are only human, and you are working really hard and trying your best too. Give yourself a pat on the back, and see their work as an example. If they did it, so can you!
Their success is just proof that everything you want is possible. How awesome is that?
Reframe the way that you view those highlight reels, and see them as a series of endless possibilities, instead of what you haven’t yet achieved.
Performance Enhancing Techniques
Phrases for reframing are so helpful and important.
For example, if you find that you are comparing yourself to another author and feeling down about it, try re-phrasing the way you are speaking to yourself. Imagine yourself as another person – what is the advice that you would give?
It could be something as simple as changing ‘Her success means I’m less likely to achieve mine’ to ‘Her success shows me how successful I can be as an author’. If you develop an amazing one, write it down and pin it somewhere near your computer/ make it your background and repeat it as a mantra.
You will find that the act of re-framing and re-phrasing will eventually change your behaviour and feelings, kicking comparison to the curb.
Viewing others from a place of constant generosity is not always easy, but it is a worthwhile practice that can lead to a genuine change in issues of comparison envy.
Next time you feel that you are comparing, try looking at your fellow author from a place of generosity and saying ‘I am so happy that they have achieved this success. It says nothing about me and my journey, only that what I strive for is possible.’
Remember that your journey is your own. Yes, there are people who were best sellers at the grand old age of nineteen, but if that’s not your journey, that’s okay. There will be someone looking at your journey and wishing that it was their own.
Be grateful for your path, your ongoing education, and your personal growth. It’s an awesome thing!