Thursday, February 21, 2013

Those Girls: Are you Behind Your Friends?

I decided to address this question not as a accusation of malice, but as a reminder of forgetfulness. In the creative world, awesome people are everywhere, and are usually very busy. What a Catch-22, right? With so many creative, unique people, it's easy to get caught up in the projects with new people you are working on and put old friends on the back burner. That's human nature--there are only 24 hours in the day!

On the other side of the coin, it's easy to become resentful of our busy and successful friends when they are absent. However, when we really examine the true feelings behind that resentment, is it because we miss them? Or is it because we are envious of their success? I love this quote from Oscar Wilde:

Anybody can sympathise with the sufferings of a friend, but it requires a very fine nature to sympathise with a friend's success.
-Oscar Wilde

Do you see any part of yourself in this quote? It's difficult to turn a mirror around on our faults, but I definitely can name a few instances of the green monster rearing its ugly head in my reflection. In moments like this, it's our responsibility to be accountable for our feelings and support our friends, regardless of our own dreams and struggles.

Everyone's lives and careers are mapped out in peaks and valleys. When we are in a peak, it's easy to get caught up in the celebration of our own successes and lose touch with the people that love us. When we are in a valley, it's easy to glare up at those on a peak.

I have homework for each perspective (and I'm not going to tell you which one I'm doing!)

For those who feel they are on a peak: Reach out to someone that you love that you know isn't doing as well as you are. Whether personally or professionally, someone you know (and care about) is bound to not be doing so well. Make sure they know you think they are great. Give a great reference for their company to someone you are working with, take them out to coffee with a great connection you have, or even just write them a quick note. There is no need to apologize for being busy and successful--but remembering who was there for you when you weren't, is what's important.

For those who feel they are in a valley: Create a journal--it could be pocket-sized, or part of your regular work notebook--and designate a small area each day to write that day's successes and joys. It could be something as simple as "I didn't look at Facebook at all while I was working today," or something like, "I got an email from a potential client." This area is just for you, and when you're feeling hopeless, you can go back and remind yourself of the great things you actually have. Remember, there is ALWAYS someone who is happy with less than what you have.

handwriting by Andie Powers

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