Updated: Oct 24, 2018
I never thought of myself as someone who felt like they were missing out on what other people were doing... until I started a small side business. With social media it’s great to see what other makers are creating, what events they’re attending, and what partnerships and collaborations they have going, but this is also a double edged sword. As someone who’s trying to grow her small business, it’s hard to not feel like I’m missing out when I don’t hear about an event that I see another local maker attending or when an artist highlights an article they’re featured in.
I work in social media (for my day job) and love how easy it is to connect with others and share my work, but it’s also made me develop a serious case of FOMO (fear of missing out). As a small business, I want to do all the things at once, but know I need to keep in mind my limits.
When my FOMO strikes, here’s a few things I try to keep in mind to not get down on myself or go into panic mode.
I don’t need to do everything Because my small business is also a side business, I have a limited amount of time to create, sell, and promote my business. So I remind myself that I don’t need to do everything I see other artists and makers doing on social media. It’s important to do what’s right for me and my brand, at the right time. It’s okay to say "no" to things that aren’t the right fit. And it’s important to fit in the things I want to do, in the time I have. Things will happen when they’re meant to.
I shouldn’t compare myself to others Everyone’s journey is different. We all grow at our own pace. Just because another maker has vended at X-amount of markets, doesn’t mean I should compete with them or feel like I’m missing out because I didn’t apply or attend a market they were at. Instead, I try to cheer on that other artist and maker while focusing on my own craft. It’s important to be confident in knowing what I do is amazing, and to focus on that.
Social media is a highlight reel No one wants to share their failures. Because we usually only see the good and positive things on social media it’s hard to think that that’s not always the case. We all have our slow times, markets that were crappy, or things that don’t work out, but we don't broadcast those moments. I'm guilty of only sharing the good things. I don't want to share about a market where I barely broke even or a collaboration that fell through. Whenever I start comparing myself to things I see on social media or how great I think other artists are doing, I try to remember that what I see on their feed is only half the story.
Remember, you are strong, you are amazing, you are magical. You make amazing things and don't feel like the light from others dulls your shine in any way.