Boss Lady

How to overcome ‘comparisonitis’ as a mother in business


How many times have you scrolled through Instagram and Facebook, impressed and – if you’re totally honest – sometimes kind of intimidated – by all of the incredible people doing amazing things on your feed.

These emotions are intensified when you’re a business mama with a million and one things on your plate. Not only are you striving to be the best parent you can be, but you also have big dreams of building a fabulously successful business.

It doesn’t exactly seem like an easy feat when you’re having a bad week – struggling to control your kids, rocking the same outfit (pyjamas) three days in a row, cooking some pretty questionable meals and feeling like you haven’t achieved anything YOU wanted to do..

Being connected all the time has its positives and negatives, and unfortunately one of those negatives is our susceptibility to start measuring ourselves against the achievements (self proclaimed or otherwise) of others. Combine that with the bad week described above and you have a very negative frame of mind.

It is very important to nip “comparisonitis” in the bud before it starts having an impact on your self-love, confidence and decision making.

Here’s how to do it:

Remember your WHY

When I made the decision to start The Modern Day Living and publish it as a magazine, I was met with a lot of fear and doubt. People felt the need to point out to me that print was a dying industry, using all other magazines and newspapers as a reference. With that kind of feedback, it was hard not to feel deflated and start making comparisons.

However, I knew deep down that this was the way I wanted to progress and pursue my passion for working with and helping mothers. I remembered all the times I have comforted mums, told them not to worry and that they are doing an amazing job – why not take my own advice?

The thought of someone reading The Modern Day Living (something I created from scratch) and as a result feeling like bad-ass, amazing, stylish woman AND mum all-in-one, that’s what kept me going. When you’re chasing that inspired feeling, that creativity or purpose – that WHY – you are so excited that you forget everyone else. No more comparisons!

Take action:

We often write down our goals or creative ideas and then forget about them. To remember your ‘why’ – revisit and rewrite your purpose and vision as much as possible. For example, if you’re a busy mama with a baby and you don’t want to lose sight of your dreams, put a vision board up somewhere you will see it when you’re up late at night feeding.

Digital detox

Like many other modern women, there have been stages of my life when I have found myself stuck in scroll-town. It is so easy to forget that people only post their best bits or highlight reel on social media. Most people won’t show you the kiddie tantrums, the rejection letters, the piles of washing, overdue bills or unproductive afternoons spent watching Netflix instead of “hustling” away at their business.

If you do find yourself starting to compare your personal or business life to someone on social media – LOG OFF. There are so many incredible mummy bloggers posting “relatable” content nowadays, but even so, if you’re not in a good place it’s easy to go down the path of comparison. Same goes for your business – you may think stalking the competition and being online 24/7 is important, but in reality, it’s a breeding ground for comparison.

A few days off aren’t going to hurt you – promise!

Take action:

Take this time to brainstorm ALL of the amazing things you think you “could” do – if only someone else hasn’t done it first, done it better or failed to try to do it. Now switch “could” into “will”. You WILL do those amazing things if you break free from your comparisons!

Don’t be scared to fail

When Lisa Messenger announced that she was shutting down ‘The Collective’ – right while I was in the final stages of organizing my magazine launch – I freaked out. For a few seconds, minutes… okay, maybe half an hour… I sat there thinking oh my god! If she can’t do it, why am I even trying?! But if there’s one thing I have learned through building The Modern Day Living Magazine,, it’s that you have to embrace the unknown. Comparing ourselves to others makes us feel terrible, and that’s because when we compare ourselves – whether as mothers or as entrepreneurs – we are feeling afraid of failure.

How many times have you been told that there is no such thing as a failure, just a lesson? And how many times have you ACTUALLY taken that phrase to heart and implemented it in your own mindset? Changing the way you view failure will ultimately stop “comparisonitis” right in its tracks – because you are removing the fuel (fear) from the fire.

Take action:

Write down the worst case scenario that could occur from you taking action (e.g. starting a business while being a stay-at-home parent)..

Now write down what you would actually do if that scenario came into fruition. How would you react? 99% of the time it’s actually really easy to brainstorm how you will solve the problem and get back on track.

With no more negative comparisons, you can get on with building the business and life of your dreams. What’s stopping you?

About Erin Williams

Erin Williams is the founder of The Modern Day Living Magazine and Dawn Till Dusk Childcare Services. She founded her first business at age 22. Instagram - @themoderndayliving Facebook - @themoderndayliving

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