Social media is an enormous opportunity for growth-minded entrepreneurs. It gives us a place to add value to an audience and inform those that follow us about the products and services our business offers. It reaches potential customers where they are every day. But while you put in the work daily, you encounter something that could end up affecting your business in a negative way. It's a sneaky and common issue.
Often, you see entrepreneurs who you’re connected to post about the wins and amazing things they’re experiencing. They had a successful six-figure launch of a new product. They were featured in a large media outlet that brought in tons of new customers. They are traveling the world for corporate consulting gigs.
You see hundreds of people liking and interacting through each of those posts. It can work wonders on your state of mind. Between social media, email and your local networks, there’s no shortage of opportunity to follow into the comparison trap.
This trap has you comparing what you’re doing and experiencing right now to another entrepreneur’s highlight reel. It has you feeling like there’s “competition” that you must do better than if you’re going to be successful. That kind of scarcity mindset will have you focused on all the wrong things.
It takes a lot to grow a business and become a successful entrepreneur. Building your business while looking over your shoulder will have you falling over and often. Trying to compare your progress to other entrepreneurs who do the same thing as you is not a realistic measuring stick. Your only “competition” is you, your goals, your ambition. Here are three things to consider.
1. The goal is growth and to challenge yourself
As entrepreneurs, our goal should be growth in every area of our life and business. We should constantly strive to push to peak and new levels in our performance. We want to challenge ourselves but that’s the operative phrase. It’s all about progress against the goals we set -- not progress against others.
It’s one thing to mastermind with other entrepreneurs and challenge each other to sales or other measurable goals. It’s another to compare your growth to any similar type of entrepreneurs. You don’t know what their goals are or what advantage they had. You can't see the path they took to experience that win. It’s not an apples-to-apples situation.
2. Comparison is the quickest way to feed into self-limiting beliefs
There are 3.5 billion people using the internet every day. In 2017, ecommerce sales hit $5 trillion, according to Digital Commerce 360. There is more than enough business for entrepreneurs that have built the same kind of business. The idea of competition is a scarcity mindset based.
When you compare, you give your self-limiting beliefs the water they need to grow in your mind. It feeds into a belief of you not being enough or worthy of higher levels of success. It erodes your confidence and that will have an effect on your motivation to do the work. Life and business are hard enough. Don't add unnecessary pressure and new levels of stress.
3. Entrepreneurship is a personal journey
You started your business with a vision and dream of accomplishing something amazing. You took the first steps and are "in it" every day working to grow your dream. Entrepreneurship is a journey in which you must make personal choices, goals, strategies, and decisions. If you try to make this about competition and comparison, you'll go down a path that takes you away from your ultimate vision.
Be strong and confident in yourself and your ability to grow. Realize that there's more than enough opportunity to build a business that gives you freedom, makes an impact, and creates financial security. Stop comparing and make your competition the goals and new levels of success you set and go after. Here's to you and what you'll build once you free your mind and develop an abundance based mindset.
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This article originally appeared on Entrepreneur.com. Minor edits have been done by the Entrepreneur.com.ph editors