Ladyfolk Studio

custom illustrations & watercolor workshops

Escaping the Comparison Trap - A Creative Point of View

InspirationKimberly HeimbachComment

I think it's easy for any of us to fall into the comparison trap. With the overload of images thrown at us on the daily through instagram how can we not help but think should I be doing something else? Something more like them? Something different than them? Should I just give up? Are they copying me? Does anywhere care about what I'm doing?

Well I'm writing this post in hopes of getting some of my own thoughts out, as well as hopefully helping you to realize the trap we fall into. The past couples months I have lost a little momentum with my business. I like to easily blame that on the fact that summer was over and I had to go back to school to teach two days a week at LCAD. Yet the fact is, that is just an excuse. Things I had time for before I realized were slowly disappearing. I was comparing myself too much to what I was seeing and it had practically frozen me. 

Now here I am trying to get back on track. I haven't blogged or sent a newsletter for months, although I have had plenty to say and share. I just thought, who really cares? I don't have 10k followers or even 2k at that. I just stopped really caring because I have felt maybe I wasn't doing enough? or I don't look like so and so... or I'm not comfortable talking on instagram stories and thats what you have to do to be successful. Well I've had a talk with myself now and realized that simply isn't true. 

You need to learn to how to select your thoughts just the same way you select what clothes you're gonna wear every day. This is a power you can cultivate. - Elizabeth Gilbert

We are all on our own path and there is no right or wrong way, all we can do is keep moving forward. So here I am moving forward and staying in my own lane. Below are some things I am focusing on that have helped improved my focus and I hope they will help you too!

1. Monitor your time and thoughts as you scroll through social media. I'm not limited myself completely from instagram but I am going to try to allot myself specific times when I can post and look at who I'm following on instagram. As I'm scrolling I'm going to remind myself I'm doing great things too but others may simply be sharing more and that I don't have to do what everyone else is doing. Remind myself I am unique and special and instagram doesn't always show that.

2. Read more. I feel like I completely forgot how inspiring and uplifting reading books can be. In particular business or self help books. That way instead of wasting my time checking my social media, I can actually grow as a business owner and person by reading helpful books. I believe the more knowledge I have the less overwhelmed I will feel.

From my recent visit to The Riviera in Palm Springs, California. Get out and explore to find more inspiration away from the screen.

From my recent visit to The Riviera in Palm Springs, California. Get out and explore to find more inspiration away from the screen.

3. Live in the moment, get outside more and see friends. I get so trapped in my studio thinking I have to work all the time to "keep up" with everyone else on social media I forget about real life. I'm going to make an effort now to make more plans with friends and also to make new friends. Pre-instagram this is how people actually connected. Just the fact thatI found I am deficient in Vitamin D when I live in one of the sunniest parts of the nation reminds me I need to go the beach more. I could even combine my two goals of reading more with getting outside more and maybe meeting a friend for lunch after. We need to be reminded that sometimes the real inspiration comes from life not a screen.

4. Work on more personal projects. I have been so caught up working on client projects I completely forgot about my own projects. I plan to commit time each day now to work on something just for fun. An example would be Mr.Bailey's dog teepee I have been meaning to finish. I have had all the materials for months, just need to put it together and hand-paint the pattern I have planned. 

Watercolor doodles and donuts for a personal project.

Watercolor doodles and donuts for a personal project.

So tell me in the comments, what tip will you try? How do you stay focused? How can we uplift each other without comparing?