You could be the juiciest peach in the world and there’s someone who hates peaches. I think that’s the perfect quote to start this deep article about depression, anxiety, and comparison on. Small business owners deal with this on any given day.
Mental exhaustion or illness is a taboo subject that people steer clear of for numerous reasons. Me on the other hand, I want to face the conversation head on and find solutions. When I first started my business I was full of anxiety, not knowing which way to turn or what to do with my business. I was seeking advice from everyone and not listening to my body, which caused me to mentally and physically burn out all at once.
Now that social media is bigger than ever, more small business owners feel some type of way about their businesses. Causing them to be depressed or start the comparison trap. Even get anxiety from not being what they think others want them to be. Yes, sometimes I compare my middle to someone’s end or their start, for all I know. Then I snapped myself out of it because I was reminded we’re not in a race. No matter if we both have our Nike’s laced up. What they are doing is part of their purpose and I must focus on mine.
One of the biggest things I’ve noticed from talking with my business friends and audience is, the need to compare lives and how those comparisons make people depressed. Looking from the inside or through social media glasses, almost everyone’s lives look perfect, when in actuality they are far from it. We truly never know what someone is going through, at given moment, when we see their beautifully filtered image.
Personally, I have struggled with keeping up with the Joneses and being skinny enough. Yes, I do realize I am skinny already but society was telling me my size 4 figure is too big in comparison to someone’s size 0. Or my business was not as successful because I don’t have 19K or 125K worth of followers. My “likes” aren’t in the thousands so I must not be on and popping.
Then we encounter anxiety when putting out products or services. Wondering, will they be good enough? Will they understand the purpose? Will this be an overnight success? So many questions stem from looking at someone else’s yard. Jerry Jones’ Dallas Cowboy stadium grass will always be perfect because it is FAKE! Your grass will never be his grass.
This year my goal has been to live transparent and honest with people. I tell people I have student loan debt. I tell people I stupidly, really stupidly got a student loan for a boyfriend. I tell people the stress that comes from running two businesses. Soon to be four businesses. I prefer to be honest and myself. I love that I have less than 10K followers combined on both of my business accounts. The people who follow me are true, ride or die supporters. They keep me sane. Well, sometimes their questions stress me out and I just want to yell Google it. Lol. Jesus and working out actually keep me sane. I personally know a handful of millionaires who the world might think live amazing lives, meanwhile, they are not. We’ve had the tough conversations about feeling alone, in a world that is consumed with one upping each other.
Running a business is hard. It is extremely hard at times. Sometimes it’s even lonelier than normal. I love when I get to spend time with Brandi, Raquel, Kristen, Naisha, Jessica, and Tiffany. They bring a breath of fresh air to my life. They get it and we can be honest. Talking it out and escaping from social media has helped me so much. Yes, we have to be on there, but you technically don’t. If social media makes you feel toxic hire a social media manager. You can get someone to work for $10 an hour or a flat rate for a month.
This is the main reason why I am creating a new company that brings women together. A place that everyone can get it. They can communicate and connect with like minded individuals. There are millions of great women business owners around the world, who need to be supported and encouraged.
If you feel depressed or stuck in the comparison trap, reach out to someone. Don’t bottle it up. I care for you and believe the world needs your beautiful mind in business. Never be afraid to reach out to someone. Even me. Talk it out. Don’t get caught up in the world we live in.