6 In Career/ Personal Development

Why Not Supporting Your Competition Is Hurting You

In a world where plenty of successful people claim they’re “self-made,” it’s refreshing to see online communities like Her Success promote unity and encouragement among women because, “When one wins, we all win.” While quotes like “When one wins, we all win” sound inspirational, how many of us truly believe this? How many of us claim we’re all about the empowerment of women, but we’re selective with who we support or we only support our friends?

A few months ago, I read an article on xoNecole that featured Ericka Pittman, Vice President of Combs Enterprises (yes, Sean “Diddy” Combs). There was one thing that really stuck out to me in her interview. She said:“Women have a tendency to hoard positive information. They want to be the only ones that know, and it’s like, the world is so abundant, why wouldn’t you want to share and make sure everyone has the knowledge and the tools to be great and amazing?”

How true that is. While I root for all women to win in their respected careers, I have to admit that in the not-so-long-ago past, there was a part of me that kept certain opportunities or information to myself, fearing that someone else would get something that I deeply wanted. After reading books like You Are a Badass and You Can Heal Your Life, I realized that Ericka is right. There’s an abundance of everything in this world, but only if you truly believe it.

I’ve seen some people claim they’re all about supporting other women, but it’s clear they only support women who aren’t direct competitors or “threats” to their brand. Why not support everyone who’s building their brand—regardless of whether they’re your competition or not? I’m not sure about you, but I’m all about that abundance life. I want an abundance of love, happiness, wealth, and more, but how can I attain an abundance of these things if I’m limited to who I can work with and support and who supports me? I truly believe that what’s for you is for you, and no one can take that away from you, regardless of how successful they are in their own right.

In the February 2016 issue of Essence magazine, actress and natural hair icon, Teyonah Parris, said:

“When I  get an audition, I’m texting [my girls], ‘Hey, did you get this audition? Because you would be perfect for it. They’re calling me in, so you should go in…’ That’s how I operate and I feel good operating like that.”

You might be thinking, “Huh? Why would she do such a thing?” The answer is simple. Because she believes in her own abundance. If she gets the role, great. If not, there are still plenty of opportunities out there with her name on it. I mean, really think about it… if you’re so concerned that someone has the ability to ‘take what’s yours,’ what does that say about your self-confidence? If you believe that someone can stop you from prospering, you’ve already lost. It’s like we feel conditions always have to be perfect in order for us to accomplish our goals, and that’s just not true.

Legendary comedian and actor, Chris Rock, shared the same sentiments in the March 2016 issue of Essence magazine. He said:

“It’s big enough for all of us. I always say that to people. Kevin Hart and I always talk about this. It never comes out of my check. If Kevin gets two million dollars, it doesn’t come out of my check. I’m not short ten million dollars because Kevin Hart has a big movie. Good for him. It’s a good thing for everybody.”

So how do we get to a point where supporting each other becomes natural and replaces competing with each other? Here are some tips:

  • Instead of choosing to ignore (and low-key hate on) someone’s success or accomplishments, send them a genuine email telling them how proud you are of them. You may even mention your desire to collaborate in the future.
  • Meet up for a lunch date or have a chat via phone or Skype with someone whose work you admire.
  • Promote other people’s products, services, and events via social media, without expecting anything in return.
  • Become biz/career buddies with like-minded people. Provide genuine support to talk about obstacles you’re facing in your career or life.
  • Share great opportunities with your friends and networks—don’t be stingy.
  • Re-direct negative/gossipy conversations about other people’s success. Don’t add fuel to the fire. Say something positive.

Your turn:

Do you get enough support from other women? Share your thoughts in a comment below.

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  • I absolutely loved this post. And I enjoy meeting woman who are strong and infectious to the point where they inspire you to be better. In this world, anyone who wants to inspire someone else and mean it will always have my support. This was amazing and I absolutely loved reading it.

    Kia / KTS

    • “Women who are strong and infectious to the point where they inspire you to be better.”

      Yes! I love these types of women. They inspire me to keep pushing forward and to motivate other women to do the same.

      Thanks for reading, Kia. 🙂

  • I love this post! I just got off the phone with a girl I met today online who reached out in response to a question posted in a group. There was no pitch, no sales attempt or anything she just genuinely wanted to help. It was so refreshing and trust I will support her because that type of interaction is so rare. This was real support!

    • Bijee,

      You’re right–that type of interaction is rare. I don’t knock anyone for selling, because if you don’t sell, you don’t have a business. But I also believe that more people should genuinely help others without expecting anything in return. Everything isn’t meant to be a pitch. Glad you were able to make a real connection yesterday. 🙂

  • I love this post!!! Since I’ve started blogging I’ve met some incredibly supportive women; which has opened my eyes to how I treat other women. I think it’s important for women to support one another because it allows us to accomplish so much more. Together we are invincible! You are a great example of a supportive woman. You encouraged and embraced me as into your virtual sisterhood and I am forever grateful for your kindness.

    • Thanks so much for your support, Kwame! There are so many talented women out here like you, and I really want all of us to be seen and heard. We can’t perform to our potential if we’re not helping each other.

      P.S. I’m waiting on your book. 😉