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Collaboration Over Competition: As an Individual and Business Owner

Take a moment to think about where you are competitive in your life?

Maybe it is with women that you encounter and you are immediately competing on the level of who looks "better".

Maybe it is in your business each time you are confronted with someone doing something similar to you?

Maybe it is with a friend or family member on who is more "successful"?

I have been reflecting on the competitive mindset for sometime now and I wanted to share with you all what I have noticed.

I grew up playing sports and I was pretty good at them. I also was expected to keep straight A's in school and not slack in one area of my life.

There was an expectation both from outside influences and inside that I must compete with all those around me. My expectations became insurmountable for myself, and therefore like much of our views for ourselves, we project them on others. In every aspect of my life I took the competitive mindset along with me and with competition comes judgement.

This caused so much unhappiness and friction in my life that I didn't even notice until about 2 years ago! I had this never good enough mindset, this scarcity mindset that was holding me back.

Fast-forward to today. I am Ms. Female Entrepreneur IL and my platform is Women

Supporting Women, but it truly expands further than that to Collaboration over Competition!

So, I want to share with you a recent experience.

I am apart of a networking leads group. I recently returned after a leave of absence. For this group I represent my construction company.

We were going around doing our 30 second pitches and when we got to one of the new faces, who was a guest, he said he owned a handyman business.

Wow, how quickly our missions can go out the window!

I got defensive, competitive, and became a total hypocrite to my mission.

Thankfully, I have learned a lot about mindfulness and reflection. So I sat with it, throughout the meeting. Was snapped back to reality of my truth. And what I realized is how strong my message truly is, but also how much it is easier said than done.

After the meeting, I emailed the owner of the handyman company. After reflecting on my message, I realized how strong of a partner this company would be. That if we collaborated both of our companies would grow.

You see, we don't do handyman work, and that is his specialty. He doesn't do remodeling, that is our specialty. If I have someone call me that is an awesome client and they need something quick and it is more of a job for him, I can refer him. I keep the client happy, I help another small business owner, and I also create an awesome relationship with the business owner who now wants to do the same for me.

You see, in life when we compete, we push so much away. Whether it is as an individual - you could be pushing away another women that you just met that if you had let your walls of competition down maybe she would become your best friend for years to come.

When you let them down in business you recognize that there is enough for everyone and each person is serving the people they are meant to serve. And most importantly, no matter how close a business tries to mimic what you are doing, they CAN'T BE YOU!

I challenge you over the next week to be extremely mindful of judgement, expectations and when your mind switches to competition. Then try to

turn those thoughts around and see how you can collaborate or complement that person. YOU NEVER KNOW WHO'S LIFE YOU WILL CHANGE WITH A SIMPLE SENTENCE!!!

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