Subject: Why are they doing so much better than I am?
I had a breakthrough during therapy the other day: What’s truly holding me back from a lot of things is my confidence. That little voice in my head that keeps telling me I am not as good as them, I am not where I should be, I should be doing a better job, you shouldn’t have had that third? fourth? (I’ve lost count) piece of cake . It’s constantly there and it’s constantly holding me back from my true potential.
Most of us are constantly visited by that little voice and it usually surges up because of comparison, whether that is with people we know or most likely with what we see on social media. Comparing ourselves to others is what gives that voice strength and in returns holds us back. As I was listening to blogger Olivia Purvis and Charlotte Jacklin’s podcast “The Fringe of It” they talked about this topic of confidence and comparison and I couldn’t help but agree that social media has a huge impact in our present confidence.
How is Social Media Affecting you?
So you’re on your phone after a pretty good day, checking your Instagram scrolling through pictures mindlessly until you start to see pictures of people you follow at the beach, getting engaged, getting a promotion, traveling, etc. You then start to think that maybe your day wasn’t that good after all. You’re looking for validation on social media but what you’re truly looking at is other people’s lives you’re using that as a reflection which can be damaging, especially when we all know that half of social media is just all a set up (yes that beach picture you’re looking at probably took them the entire day to shoot and they didn’t even enjoy the time there).
It’s important to keep in mind that everyone is going through different steps in life, we truly all are different, therefore comparing yourself to others on social media is a waste of time. Try to think about the fact that many people could be looking at your social media and thinking “wow they really have their life together, don’t they?”
Why does our Confidence Affect our Career Path?
Our confidence affects us in all aspects of our lives, making new friends, love, style, etc. but it can also have a huge impact on our career path. Going to an interview with zero to no confidence is almost a guarantee that you won’t get the job, BUT walking into the interview with confidence even when you’re not quite sure what you’re doing (fake it till you make it!) will make a huge difference. People will truly believe you if you act like you know what you’re doing and talking about, all you need is the confidence.
Comparing yourself to others will really shift your mindset and lead you to a state where you start overthinking every little thing. To guarantee you not only kill the interview but you show your confidence throughout the job, it is important to try your best to shut out that little voice in your head, don’t let it get the best of you as it will truly sabotage your performance.
How to Work on Perfecting Your Confidence?
Start by shutting down that little voice in your head. I know, I know, it’s easier said than done, but as my therapist mentioned the more you exercise one part of the brain the more limp the other side gets, it will take practice and time but all you have to do is start to exercise the confident side of you brain.
Start by writing down nice things about yourself or nice things that happened throughout the day (it can be as small as “I saw a dog!”), then start working on how you speak about yourself out loud. I very rarely celebrate my own accomplishments thinking I am being modest by doing so, but sometimes modesty can be a bad thing. I am not saying that you should be stuck up but allowing yourself to speak up about what you’ve accomplished and validating yourself is necessary.
Lastly, remember that nobody is perfect and that someone can seem as if they had their lives together on social media but you’re not actually seeing the full picture. It’s very likely that another person is looking at your profile and thinking your life looks amazing. We all have those parts we chose not to reveal on social media.
So next time you notice that you’re talking yourself down think to yourself “would I say that to my friend?” Most, if not all, of the times the answer will be no, so why should you be telling yourself these things.
Comparing yourself to others will almost never get you anywhere far, always remember focus on yourself and growing in your own career and remember that seeking inspiration from former figures in your career is not an issue that is until you start to see it affecting your confidence. Everyone moves at their own pace, remember all of the things that make you amazing at what you do and go out there and kick some ass!