In 2023, the rise of the female founders has been nothing short of inspiring. Women are redefining entrepreneurship, smashing glass ceilings, and taking control of their financial independence. Yet a subtle but pervasive challenge looms – the age-old comparison game.
There’s no question that entrepreneurship can take a massive toll on your mental health. A 2019 study found that entrepreneurs experience more mental health and addiction issues than the general public. Add in the added pressure of social media and it becomes incredibly easy to fall into the trap of comparing oneself to other successful entrepreneurs.
This led us to post an open question to the Xena community: “Do you ever feel threatened by other women’s achievements?”. The responses were somewhat of a two-fold. While the majority of the respondents admitted to feeling threatened by other females’ success, they also admitted to using their feelings of inadequacy to fuel their self-growth.
- “What a question. Yes, I do feel threatened sometimes and that also pushes me to work harder on my achievements.”.
- “I’m not often threatened, but what I’ve experienced is that my achievements are often seen as a threat to others.”
- “Being threatened by other people’s success means you are comparing yourself with them. I used to when I did modelling, and that almost led to my complete destruction. Now I admire strong and successful women. I try to connect and learn from them.”
7 Ways to Beat the Comparison Game
- Celebrate our She-EO Story
Remember, every fempreneur’s journey is unique. While one founder might excel in e-commerce, another might be revolutionising tech or creating sustainable solutions in fashion. Just because your path looks different from someone else’s doesn’t make it less significant or successful. Celebrate each unique story, including your own!
- Define Success On YOUR Terms
Your business, your rules. As a female founder, you have the privilege of defining what success means for your fempire. Whether it’s achieving a work-life balance, upskilling yourself or your team, or creating a positive impact in the community, own your narrative
- Embrace Community Over Competition
The modern world thrives on collaboration. While business can sometimes seem cut-throat, there’s an unparalleled strength in female collaboration. Focus on networking and connecting with other female founders and focus on where you can be uplifted and uplift others.
- Practice Self-Compassion
It’s natural for founders (especially type A personalities) to be their harshest critics. However, berating oneself for not matching up to someone else’s milestones will only drain your energy. Celebrate your achievements, learn from your setbacks, and always remember to be kind to yourself.
- Dive Deep Into Your “Why”
Reconnect with the reason you started your business. Was it to fulfil a personal passion? To solve a particular problem? To create a legacy? By reminding yourself of your “why,” you align your actions with your core mission and become less susceptible to the allure of comparisons.
- Limit Your Scrolling Time
While social media is a great tool for networking and business growth, it’s also a killer when it comes to comparison. If you’re finding yourself constantly comparing your life and your business to other founders, then consider taking a break from social media. Curate your feed to reflect authentic, motivating content rather than aspirational content.
- Gratitude Over Greed
Taking time each day to recognise and be grateful for what you’ve achieved in your business can work wonders. Gratitude grounds us, making us resilient against the waves of comparison.
Remember, while it’s human nature to compare, it’s also within your power to shift your mindset. Every founder has her own timeline, challenges, and successes. Celebrate your individuality and allow others’ wins to inspire you, not to tear you down.
Liked this article? Join Xena’s community of 30,000+ powerful female founders to access more insightful articles about business and self-development. Together, we empower one another and share knowledge, experiences, and success stories as we carve our unique paths in the South African entrepreneurial landscape.
Sign up for free: https://yw2g3thbd8j.typeform.com/to/VNxGYiPN