As Brene Brown says, "Stay in your own lane. comparison kills creativity and joy."

“Stay in your own lane. Comparison kills creativity and joy.” – Brene Brown

“I haven’t accomplished anything,” a friend said to me today.

“What are you talking about?” I asked her.

She proceeded to tell me that she had woken up that morning and looked at a friend’s portfolio of photography.  She said it was stunning and that the person had so many better photos with real models and fancy backgrounds.  Despite being upset about this, I had to remind my friend that she had just won a nation-wide photography contest and has taken numerous, beautiful pictures here in Ireland, most notably including her Polaroid which she is making into a tiny scrapbook.

Comparison is hard to avoid.  Especially in the world of the internet where you can see everyone else’s work.  I fight this every day in my poetry workshop class.  There are graduate-level people and I am only a beginner.

Comparison leads us to self-doubt.  Thoughts of “I’m not good enough”.  I have to remind myself to compare myself only to myself.  Especially in a creative setting.  I remind myself that I am the only person who can create the things I create.  That makes them special and worthy of my time to try to improve them against my own work, like my friend’s travel scrapbook.  It doesn’t matter what other people create and how I think that they are somehow “better” than what I do.  It only matters what I have done and how much I am willing to improve myself and my work for me, not for them.

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