Something has made me angry this morning. Not sure if angry is the right word, but annoyed? Maybe disappointed? Anyway....
I put what I THOUGHT was a compliment on a competitors social media image, only to have them delete it. So, am I angry at the competitor...no, I don't think so. I think I am angry at either technology, and the ability for words on a small screen to be interpreted incorrectly, or maybe I am angry at perception. Which is totally impossible because I can't guess what someone's perception is going to be or not be. Not sure, Can't say, so I am staying angry at technology.
After all, I could have picked up the phone and told her how gorgeous her design was in person. But who does that these days? Did anyone do that ever?
Social media is a place that let's us put ourselves out there. For all to see. Almost like being naked in public.
To hopefully be complimented on our work, get a few 'likes' (and believe me, I am constantly telling my girls that 'likes' are a two minute joy that make you feel good for a millisecond, then it's over - and that 'likes' certainly don't equal self esteem) and desperately hoping no one says anything negative towards our work. 'Likes' do however help spread the word about our products, so you kinda want them for that.
At times, I scroll though the feeds of various social media outlets and the self esteem part of me takes over and says "What are you doing? You are so not in the league of these crazy talented people!". I see collaborations and think to myself, "I am not in on that" and question why. Then, in the next instant I am in love with something I created and keep on keeping on.
Comparison isn't a good thing in any part of life. EVER. When I start comparing my work to others, I take a little social media ban on myself and get over it, then come back to reality with both guns blazing and new ideas a plenty.
It happens in real life too - at craft markets all the time (I know cos I have done my fair share of markets, and embarrassing enough, may have done this once upon a time too). People walking past your stall saying under their breath "Oh I could make that". It instantly makes me think defensively. Here's my thoughts talking... "Yeah but have you? Will you? Are YOU here selling your Oh-I-Could-Make-That's? Well are you??? Why did you come to the craft market to buy stuff you could make yourself?"...and then I am over it, concentrating on the next pleasant customer.
It's such a constant roller coaster ride, this small business thing. This being creative thing. This putting yourself out there thing. This social media thing.
There are so many unbelievably talented people out there that I follow with interest and am in absolute AWE of. I compliment them when I see something they designed that I love, and am legitimately happy for them to have their moment when they create something that makes my eyes happy. See the links to a few that I admire after my sign off (mostly stationers, or as I call them 'inspirationers' - in business and I am more than happy to share the love).
There's a saying that I often see on news feeds that says something along the lines of, "I don't believe in competition, I hope we all make it". I TRULY, HONESTLY can say that I live by this. I know with stationery, there are many, many designers that do what I do, and I know there is enough work for all of us. We each have a different little niche market and I grow and have watched other stationery businesses grow, and am thankful they are in my life.
Today I am not bringing this back to stationery.
I'm just saying.
Both guns blazing now.
Have a great weekend.
Create something beautiful. Let me know and I'll 'like' it.