Sometimes I have this terrible habit of comparing myself to others.
The thing is, this terrible habit of mine flows in two directions. Usually it starts with a simple perusing of the Internet for inspiration. What's this person shooting? How are they shooting? Where are they shooting? Oh-em-geeee, they are so much better than me! Cue: downward spiral of shame.
Then, sometimes, I fly in the other direction. We're talking off the charts, cue downward spiral of shame for the wrong reasons. Like, shut your mouth, you're being nasty, "Oh-em-geeee, where did that thought even come from???" type of wrong reasons. Yes, it deserves three question marks. Because, you know what? I judge, and I judge bad. And I hate that about myself.
It usually starts quite innocently, with a simple perusing of the Internet for inspiration. Where are other photographers advertising? How much are they charging? Oh-em-geeee, are you serious? Why on earth do they think they can charge that much? They need more practice. People should not be paying for this. Why are people booking them and not me? This isn't fair. Life isn't fair. I need to work harder. And now, yet again, cue: downward spiral of shame.
So here's the downright, can't believe I'm putting this out there, god-forsaken truth: I am too quick to criticize, compare and speak negatively not only of myself, but of others. And guess what? It really has nothing to do with the other photographers at all. It's me, all me. I'm basically projecting my negative thoughts and feelings, my worries, upon others. Side note: I apologize to anyone who never knew that I said something internally negative. So, so sorry. I didn't mean it, really.
What, do you ask, is the point of this exceedingly rambling post? In hope of holding myself accountable, I'm going to start posting goals up on the Internet, for all to see.
Here's the first one:
Something I'm working on daily is to be supportive of others. To be a guiding light, to give advice freely - no matter what. I want to be available, I want to be approachable. I want to put out what I would like to receive, but not expect to receive it. I want to be positive even when negativity is trying it's darnedest to win. I want to be a teacher.
And I want to start a Tucson networking group for photographers.
From what I can tell, it doesn't exist. The closest PUG is in Scottsdale. There isn't much of a resource for people starting out, or even established photogs who want to hang out with other photogs. Not having mentors or local resources is like trying to swim in quicksand. It makes it so much easier to give up, and I don't want anyone to give up! If this is what you want to do, you should do it! And you should have the resources to do so. So if you're a local, e-mail me! firstname.lastname@example.org
A friend of mine posted this quote the other day. It actually inspired this post and helped me put things into perspective.