For the longest time, I thought I was ready for marriage. It was hard for me to celebrate someone else’s happiness, particularly around love, without thinking about my own unfulfilling love-life. The same was true for professional success. Seeing another person’s entrepreneurial happiness made me reflect on the shortage of business opportunities. I was secretly in competition with those around me.
I failed to realize that I didn’t have what I wanted because I wasn’t ready for it.
Life is not survival of the fittest. It’s been ingrained in us that we must be better than the next person in order to be successful. The sobering truth is that we only need to be the best version of ourselves and that will always be enough.
Societal influences don’t help with this mindset. Social media, reality television, and print media often build buzz by putting one person against another: Cardi B versus Nicki Minaj, Team Light Skin versus Team Dark Skin, or baby mom versus girlfriend. When I was caught up in the comparisons in my own life, I was unaware that there were spaces where women could genuinely uplift, celebrate, and support one another.
Toward the end of my twenties, I stopped looking around, and started focusing on building the future I wanted for myself. I discovered my purpose and began seeking books, people, and opportunities that could help get me started. I found a life-coach, a financial adviser and connected with a therapist. As I worked on myself, I attracted women who were on similar journeys. We were unconsciously longing for a place to celebrate and support each other.
I joined and created sister circles. The more I built myself, the more I could offer and learn from those around me. Slowly, I realized behind all of the hype, every woman has her own journey. None of us will be able to walk in our greatness if we spend our time competing with the woman next to us.
Our journey is not a competition; it’s a unique obstacle course of lessons and progression. The only person we are truly competing with is the person we were in the past. This is a humbling yet freeing perspective, and I find myself learning how to live it out more and more as I focus on building and pursuing my own dreams. Now, I can celebrate my friends’ marriages, businesses, and baby showers without feeling inadequate or behind.
If you find yourself struggling to celebrate others or living with the belief that there isn’t enough room at the top for all of us, adjust your focus. Shift your thinking to what you need to do and who you need to grow into in order to have what you want. Many times we don’t have the person, position, or success we want because we aren’t ready for it. Get ready. As you grow and develop, you will attract what you deserve and you will be able celebrate with others as they do the same.
Tell me how you're celebrating sisterhood below.