By nature I am not a very competitive person. I don’t want to be better than anyone. I don’t want to beat you in a race. I don’t want to sell more donuts than you. Competition isn’t something that motivates me.
Not all competition is bad though. Competition can make you better. If you see another woman is working out more than you, you might want to step your game up. If you see she is putting in major time studying, you might want to match or beat her efforts. If competition is going to make you work harder to make you better, I would consider that a benefit.
However, if competition makes you bitter, frustrated or makes you down or criticize the next woman, then you have walked into the realm of being a hater. Hater is one of my least favorite words because I feel it’s overused. But when you have to point out the negatives of another woman in an effort to boost yourself up, that’s exactly what you are. And it’s beyond pointless.
There are entirely too many people in the world for you to get upset if someone does the same thing as you. It’s absolutely insane to think no one else will have your same talents, passion and gifts. I’m not the only writer in the world. Anthony Hamilton isn’t the only singer (he’s the only one that matters to me though; I love that man!). Kerry Washington isn’t the only actress. Scott Conant isn’t the only chef. Sometimes we create competition where there really isn’t any. People have preferences and what I like may not float your boat. And that’s perfectly ok. Don’t be naïve enough to believe people can only like one singer, artist, chef or writer at a time.
One of the reasons I had a hard time sharing my writings was because I spent too much time comparing myself to Maya Angelou, Jill Scott and Nikki Giovanni. I surmised that my writing was not to their caliber so why should I even try? But when I did share began my work I was caught off guard by the positive feedback I received. I was floored by the people that could say “I loved that poem” or “I needed to hear that”.
I don’t compare to Jill Scott…she is absolutely amazing in her gift. But the position of being Jill Scott is already filled; what better person is there to be than me? I have a unique gift and in the words of my sister “you have something to say that someone needs to hear.” The more I compared myself to other women, the less effort I was putting into being that voice for someone.
I’m not in competition with any other woman. Another woman can write all the poems, novels and short stories she wants and I will not think of her as my competition. We share the same gift and that connection makes me want to support her, not criticize her. A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of meeting an author. She allowed me to pick her brain and get some insight into the world of publishing and writing in general. Instead of brushing me off as her competition, she took the time to share her experiences and to give me suggestions. This simple act has made me a fan and I’m going to go buy all her books. I’ll support her ventures and I’ll recommend her books to other people. Because she saw me as a Queen and not as competition.
Queens: imagine how much more powerful we can be if we support each other instead of bashing each other. Imagine how much more connected we could be if we could pool our thoughts, ideas, and resources together. Imagine the people we could reach if we walked in our own path while showing our sisters they can walk their paths, too. Imagine how strong we can be if we show our sisters love and support in their ventures.
We can create a movement, a force to be reckoned with. We can create a network of women who can reach women who can reach women who can reach women. We can empower Queens to leap into their dreams.
And all we have to do is what we love to do while pushing the next sister to chase her goals, too. Who are you supporting? What blogs do you follow? What life coaches do you subscribe too? What artists do you like? Who’s book are you reading? Name drop those Queens that you are supporting!