“Rising up” Instead Of “Comparison To”

May 28

In addition to motherhood, housework, and all things encompassing “holy cr@p, we are moving across the country in a few weeks”, I’ve had a lot on my mind. Guess I wouldn’t be a human being if all of that wasn’t affecting me in one way or another. In an effort to keep it real in here, I thought I would share a few (of the many) things weighing heavy on me. promise this won’t be getting too personal – It’s pretty much blog-related schtuff. So don’t click away. Just yet. Haha! But seriously, I do think this is a great conversation to have with all of you.

Confession: Lately I’ve noticed i’m either comparing myself to other bloggers and their amazing, perfect projects OR simply trying to keep up with the same rigorous post schedule they seem to (so easily) stay on top of.

This is a bad bad thing and a mindset I won’t tolerate for myself anymore. I want to enjoy writing and sharing in here without that unnecessary pressure.

My guess is these feelings are coming from the fact our kids are home for the summer and our big move is on the horizon. Because of those 2 big changes, I’m worried I won’t be able to keep up with the posting schedule I had become accustomed to. I have the longest list of fun topics to share, but getting to them? And getting them photographed? And editing the photos? And then writing something witty and fun? all while enjoying our kiddos and getting the new house ready for move-in and getting us packed up and moved….Uummm, when is this blog thing going to happen?!

Those feelings come from “comparing myself” to others. And that’s not healthy!

when I get all wound up like that, I remind myself “self, you are not obligated to anyone or any sponsors. This is a fun outlet from mommyhood. Post when it works for you and don’t put on the pressure!”.

I suppose another thing I don’t want to put out there is that same feeling onto others. I don’t want readers to see an organization project I’ve shared and think they are “less than” if they haven’t done it themselves…Or don’t drop everything they’re doing, no matter how busy they are, to re-create it right away. Trust me, there are many areas in my life where I struggle. Namely in the kitchen (a-hem). And in the cleaning department (coughcough). So, while I have the organization thing down, don’t plan on coming over to enjoy a perfectly prepared, delicious meal in a freshly cleaned top-to-bottom house.

Recently, a reader e-mailed me and said it looked like I had it down – everything clean and organized and on a great, stress-free schedule. She wanted to know how I prioritized my day and what my schedule looks like. She’s a young mother with 2 small children and said she was barely looking presentable and keeping her head above water with the housework.

ooooooooh no…I replied explaining life here in this house is far from perfect. I definitely roll with the punches. This little blog is only a tee-niny window into my real world. I joke that I am so passionate about organization because it’s basically the only thing I have control over in my life. I’m just like everyone else – We sometimes have beds unmade and laundry not done and dishes not put away and dirty floors and toys all over the house. we keep it real over here.

And it’s about to get really real now that all 3 kiddos are home for the summer AND we’re getting ready to move.

It’s a tough one because I enjoy people reading along with me here and enjoy the idea of helping even just a few people simplify their lives…But don’t want to add to this insane pinterest culture we live in. The culture where we see these amazing crafts or recipes or home ideas or perfectly decorated, organized homes. all of us pin these wonderful ideas and then never make it happen in real life.

Then we feel defeated because we know someone else out there is doing it. “Why am i not inspired enough to do it too? What’s wrong with me?”.

This blog post had been written in my head for the last few months and my plan was to keep it safely tucked away in there.

That is until last week.

Last week a friend of mine shared something and it really hit me. As she always does, she so eloquently put what I had been feeling into words. (She should write a blog!) I asked her if I could share this with all of you because I think this is something to make great conversation of…

“I just started regularly reading blogs. And I’m on the search for ones that are going to inspire me. I steered away from them for awhile after I read “will remain unnamed” blog because I felt like they were just a way that I would feel less than. And yes some of them fall into that category – the people who want to write to prove that they are perfect and better than you. 
For a similar reason, I have yet to set up a Pinterest account. I am not crafty, I do not enjoy crafting, so the last thing I need to be doing is wasting more time on the internet looking at images of things that I will never do and as a result, feel badly about it. But there are a handful that I have found that seem to inspire me instead of make me compare myself. 
And also, I admit that my approach to reading these blogs have changed too. I look to them for that “rising up”, instead of the “comparison to”. That’s a theme in my life overall. Let me be me, and others be themselves. No judgment. No comparison. It’s really hard for me, by the way. And I keep them to a minimum, although I’m always ready for a new “good” one. 
Quality over quantity.”

“Rising up” instead of “comparison to”.

Those words struck me and brought me back to center. I don’t like to compare myself to anyone or any blogger. Not online or in real life. I am me and what you read in here is what you would see if you met me in person.  I think if I lost the “me” in my writing or projects, many of you would pick up on that and see it as “me trying too hard”.

we can’t lose our own voice. it’s what makes each of us unique and draws in different readers. we won’t appeal to every reader out there. nope, we won’t. i’m ok with that. but if we resonate with a few and can help a few, that’s success. it also helps to know that everyone struggles with something. no one is perfect. not me. not anyone.

My friend’s words really helped lift me out of my funk. I don’t need to compare myself to anyone…But I can certainly gain inspiration, strive to be better, continue focusing on what I’m passionate about and “rise up” to be the best me. Sounds cheesy, but it certainly made me feel better.

This message rings true even if you aren’t a blogger. So I’d love to hear your thoughts! If you have found you’re comparing yourself to others you think have it all together in one perfect little package….Or you’re feeling down and overwhelmed by what you haven’t done on that old pinterest board of yours, share what has worked for you. What snapped you back into reality and helped you realize you are you – and that’s why people love you.

(i linked up with a bowl full of lemons)

comments +

  1. YES! I go up and down with these feelings. One minute I'm good, then I get into that funk. Been kind of fighting those thoughts in my head lately. I've been trying to walk away and not look at the stuff that's become toxic to me, then when I feel giddy and inspired go back at it. It also helps me to stay away from Facebook. That place is toxic for me. Anyhow, you are not alone. Best of luck packing and moving…no stress there. 😉

  2. Simply LKJ says:

    Great post. I was probably the last person to jump on the pinterest bandwagon, and still only look (search) for things I am interested in or looking for inspiration/ideas-like for my children's Bible class I teach. I have learned to approach those "perfect" blogs knowing that what is out of the picture isn't always what's in the picture. They too have messes, clothes piled, dishes in the sink. They just chose to show only the "pretty side of things." Our pastor made the remark during his Mother's Day sermon about how bad he feels for mothers these days, the pressure to keep up with other mothers, he eluded to the whole Pinterest thing and the competition. Why is that? Why do we have to be so competitive rather than supportive? I read and write my "small" blog for fun. It has never been about the number of followers, but rather the few VERY good friends I have made along the way. Unfortunately, all too often the green eyed monster comes out in those reading the "perfect" blogs. I happen to personally know a few of those who write them, and know that all is not as it seems. They are real human beings, with real life drama and struggles. They just chose not to air their personal problems or dirty laundry. I hate to see any woman waste time and energy trying to be something they are not. God created each of us as individuals. The world be mighty boring if it were the other way around. Best wishes for a successful move. That is a huge undertaking in and of itself.

  3. LoriU says:

    I also agree. I tried starting a blog and gave up because I could never think of anything to write about!

    I don't care for the blogs who are constantly only showing the 'free' stuff they got….I don't mind now and then but some of them only write about their free trips or household goods.

  4. Nadia says:

    I love your blog sam! what i really appreciate about you is the fact that you post not really for your own benefit, but to help us. I hate some of the blogs out there that post about the free clothing, household goods, purses, jewelry, etc etc…and then want us to buy all this overpriced stuff! it is quite frustrating esp to those of us that cannot afford all this stuff! or when they post about their perfect husbands. dont get me wrong i love my husband, but sometimes i want to strangle him lol. you never read posts about stuff that their husbands did to make them scream!! good luck with your move, i know its hard, i am going through the same thing right now, and it is not easy!! but you will be just fine, i know it <3

  5. Hi Sam, I love your blog!!! You are not the first person to write a post like this. I don't understand why anyone should feel the need to write about why they may not be able to blog everyday. Life happens!!! I think a blog should be the very last thing on someones list. Unless of course, people are using it as a main income. I am very organized, I keep a clean house. Sometimes I think I push myself to the limit everyday. However, it isn't because of a blog post I read or something that was pinned. (I rarely go on pinterest.) It's because I have been doing it for years and it is the way I like to live. There isn't a blog in the world that can teach me anything about cleaning. I often wonder if people sit and surf blogs all day. Life is way to short for that. I read a few blogs. Yours is one that I really enjoy. If you don't have a post up, I check back. I can't even imagine moving and dealing with three little ones. The reason I love your blog is because I enjoy what you write about. I enjoy the you that comes across in your posts. You don't get that from to many blogs.

    I hope you enjoy the summer with your babies. I hope your move goes smoothly and I look forward to posts about your new adventure and turning your new house into a home.

    Blog when you can! Most importantly, enjoy life! Your babies will grow up in a blink of an eye. The blog will wait. your babies wont.

  6. Kim S says:

    Sam, thanks for this! I must admit, I have had several "home envy" moments with your blog – oh if only we had ample built-ins and extra closets for storage, a sunny laundry room (instead of a laundry closet), a mudroom, plenty of kitchen cabinets, etc… But (once I got over myself) I've been able to take some of your ideas and make them work for my own space. 🙂
    I've found that on blogs, Pinterest, and Facebook, we want to put our best foot forward, and it can come off the wrong way (fake or braggy). I always appreciate when we get to see the "real life" moments. 🙂

  7. Thank you for this article. I've only been doing nail blogging for a few months now and I already have these feelings. I do blogging because I enjoy it and painting my nails is my de-stresser for the day. I often wonder how people judge me, just another ditzy girl with an obsession for collecting nail polish. I am college educated and am a geologist by day, but I've had people, even my own family, judge me for having a blog. It was actually my husband who convinced me to start my blog simply for the fact that he knew I would enjoy it…and he was right. It's hard sometimes to not focus on the silly things…so and so takes better pictures, my nails are too short, people will judge my "noviceness". This is a good reality check for me especially, sometimes we just need to let it go and do things that fulfill us!

  8. Crystal says:

    Love your blog and love this post! I want you to know thy I'm always genuinely thankful for creative people like yourself thA give me ideas that fit my budget and lifestyle. I don't have a blog simply because I'm not that creative. That's why there are wonderful people like you to help us with ideas. You've inspired me so much! I guess I'm just trying to say thank you and that I do appreciate all the work and sacrifice you do.

    Good luck moving and don't worry about us readers. We will be here when you get settled 🙂

  9. Carol M says:

    Hi Sam, I too love your blog. Daily posts are not really necessary and often seem "forced". I much prefer quality over quantity, and your blog is just that in my opinion. Your hanging file post was so inspiring and your pantry..When your blog posts pop into my inbox I know it's going to be worthwhile. I too thank you for sharing with us. Don't put too much pressure on yourself. We readers want it to be fun for you. Take care.

  10. Jen says:

    I love your Blog! And, I needed to hear that today! I feel like I read these blogs and think these women must never sleep! My house is so much in DISorder that I almost feel like I can't/don't have the energy to even start! How do you start a project with 3 kids and a husband and actually get to finish it before copping out? I will start and then am very unmotivated!!

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