Run Your Own Race

I am honored to have been nominated for the Austin Statesman’s Texas Social Media Awards. It’s really incredible to me that I even made the cut for nominations. Now what happens is that anyone who wants to has the opportunity to comment online on nominations for each of the nominees. I have been reading through some of the comments that other nominees have gotten. I know and respect many of the nominees and I am sometimes overwhelmed by their accomplishments. I have been thinking a lot today about the fact that we can be amazed by the achievements of people we admire but it’s not a good idea to beat ourselves up because we don’t feel as amazing as we think our friends are.

I am fortunate that some great people have left some fantastic comments about my blog and general use of social media. On the other hand there are other folks who have even more comments on their nominations than I do and who, realistically, stand a much better chance of winning than I do. I guess it’s natural to sort of second guess yourself and say, “Why didn’t I think of what ___ is doing?” I have learned a lot from some of the really outstanding bloggers and social media users like Scott Ingram, Jason Alba, Thom Singer, Connie Reece, Bryan Person, Joe Fusco, Pete Johnson, Scott Allen, Penelope Trunk, Ilyce Glink, and Seth Godin. I hope that, over time, I have started incorporating some of what I have learned from how these folks use internet applications like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and their blogs to reach out and connect with friends and potential clients. Wait, what am I saying? Of course I have been applying what I have learned from the masters or I wouldn’t have a blog and I wouldn’t have been nominated.

I have to remind myself sometimes to just run my own race and not worry about what everyone else is doing. It is so easy to feel intimidated by the great ideas you see your colleagues implement and, if you are me, say to yourself, “What are you doing with your time? You aren’t working hard enough. You aren’t being clever enough.” But I guess that is pretty harsh. I am trying, instead, to learn from my friends without comparing myself to them. I write great resumes. In fact, I think I write some of the best resumes in the U.S. and I have a long list of satisfied clients who might agree. My primary focus isn’t on blogging or twittering or networking. Those are all tools I use so that I can do what I really love which is writing resumes so that my fabulous clients can land their dream jobs.

The point of this post is that we all have to run our own races and focus on our own strengths. Don’t beat yourself up when you run across someone who is smarter, better educated, or who has better ideas or a longer list of accomplishments. It’s just self defeating. Learn from the successes and good/bad decisions that you see others make but don’t compare yourself to anyone else. Everyone has strengths, weaknesses, worries, and insecurities but it is easy to look at someone else’s professional achievements and forget that, like everyone, he/she is not a one dimensional achievement machine.

If you can run your own race and just focus on working your hardest to be the best that you can be at whatever it is you do your life will be happy, peaceful, and full of achievements for which you will be recognized. At least that is what I tell myself.

Congratulations to all the nominees for the Texas Social Media Awards!

Read the original post: Liz Handlin