I've had a hard time relaunching our website this go-around. I thought I'd be able to do like normal-just go in, find cool things, and list them on the site. And I tried to do that. But the more I thought I was ready, the less motivated I was to finish the job. Little did I know that this would begin a lesson that had less to do with the site and more to do with my heart.
I love shopping for vintage finds and reusing and creating new things. From the moment I can remember, I have played dress up in my mom’s clothing and played in my grandmother’s old vintage goods. But over the last six months, I have been struggling to find my place in what has become a sea of vintage sellers. And I’ve spent way too much time intimidated by what I consider to be my “lack”. Lack of sales. Lack of help. Lack of ability. After all, I’ve been selling for about 4 years. In my mind, I should be further along. And social media did nothing to soothe that ache. I began following other shops and would compare myself to them, seeing their success and progress. Soon the depression kicked in, and before I knew it, I was telling myself things I never thought I would. I'm not good enough. Pretty enough. Fast enough. And when you begin to compare your perceived ‘failures’ to others perceived ‘success’, you will always come up short.
“Women are so unforgiving of themselves. We don't recognize our own beauty because we're too busy comparing ourselves to other people."
When comparison leads to envy, jealousy, and hatred, it becomes negative. And negative comparison has a root in narcissism or extreme selfishness. Who are we to think that others are any less deserving of the blessings they’ve been given? When we compare ourselves to what we see on social media, we are not only saying “I’m more important” but we’re suggesting that we know that person’s whole story. And we don’t. We are only given the highlight reel into other people’s lives. We don’t know how many sleepless nights they’ve had. Or relationship issues they've suffered through. Or eating disorders they've developed. We only know the info we are given in the caption of a small picture on our phones. And what I hadn’t realized is that behind the screens are human beings with the same issues as me.
What I've realized is that God has given each of us a gift. And that gift is unique to every person. No one can do what we do the exact same way we do it. That's why it's our gift. There can be a million vintage sellers out there and none of them will be like me. When I stopped comparing myself to others and began to understand an issue that had been brewing in my heart for years, I started to heal. I began to see what made me and my business different and was able to finish the relaunch. I've seen my creative spirit renewed and restored in ways that I haven't felt in years. I was able to celebrate what others have built and look at them for advice, not envy. And slowly, day by day, the cloud of depression is lifting.
So, it’s time for all of us to start shining each other’s crown because comparison truly is a killer. It kills relationships and it kills creativity. And I don't know about you, but I'm looking forward to living my most creative life yet! In addition to our collection, "In the Clouds", and the dozens of other goodies launching this month, we are highlighting a few of our idea drawings and where we get our inspiration from with a weekly blog post called "All the Ideas". Stay tuned to our weekly blog post, "How We Style", to show you how we style some of our favorite pieces. And we'll start our blog series, "Women Who Create", where we highlight women who are out there creating a better world for themselves.
If you have any questions, reviews or suggestions, email us at email@example.com. We would love to hear from you!