I started off 2010 like most people– thinking about what my New Year’s resolution would be. Looking back, there were a number of things I could have resolved to do better—perfect time management, work smarter, spend more time with the family, walk the dog, clean out the fridge once a week, put the laundry away, drink less coffee, buy less shoes…. But I decided that in 2010 I was going to stop being jealous. I was going to break up with my companion, jealousy.
In 2009 so many wonderful things happened for my business but I noticed that no matter how great I did, I always found myself jealous of others. I would be jealous when a client booked another planner over me, when someone worked an amazing wedding that I would have loved to have, when someone booked more clients that year, or had more consultations scheduled during the week. I was jealous of other people’s popularity and accomplishments. I would be jealous of someone else’s amazing studio, their staff, website or logo. I found myself jealous when other people aspired to do things beyond just planning—starting up great blogs, magazines, doing editorial photo shoots, or putting together educational workshops. I basically found myself jealous of a lot of things that other people had.
“Oh, I heard s/he’s doing that… but did you hear….”
“Oh, that client booked so-and-so? Hah! I bet you it’s because s/he undercut our pricing.”
“Wow, so-and-so’s work was featured there? Wonder who s/he knew.”
And so on…. See, jealousy really is a green-eyed monster, and once you find yourself bogged down by jealousy, it’s hard to see clearly. It’s hard to see your own achievements, no matter how small or insignificant you might think they are. It’s hard to improve your current personal and professional situation and transition your business into a new level. Jealousy breads contempt, hatred, and negativity. It is bad for your mental well-being and it is certainly bad for your business. It’s also really bad for the industry.
Lately, I’ve been noticing a lot of jealousy. I’ve been there before and know what it’s like. It’s hard to admit to yourself that you are jealous of someone else, which is why I found it especially challenging to keep this resolution. I’ve done very well. Every once in a while, though, jealousy comes back around and I’ve caught myself at times saying or feeling something out of spite. I’m certainly not perfect and it’s a natural human trait… but I encourage you to take a look at yourself and ask: are you saying something about someone else because of jealousy? Are your actions a reflection of your jealousy of others? Is your jealousy stopping you from doing something that you really want to do– or achieve your short term/long term business goals?
Resolving not to be jealous of others was the best thing I could have done for myself, personally and professionally. I felt like I broke out of a nest full of negativity. Not only that, but positive things started to change on my end. I could see and seize opportunities that would have otherwise passed me by. I also found myself incredibly grateful for what I had and had accomplished, instead of always pining to have what other people had. The biggest payoff? I’m a happier person.