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Comments

kristen

I've tried to talk about this before, but didn't get very many comments so I felt like a freak! I'm so glad you all have brought it up because then I know I'm not alone (finally!) I get envious of the communities that are held together by friendships (perceived or otherwise) and I'm always certain that I'm not included. There I've said it. I feel like the odd man out and even though it's irrational I so want to be in, I really do. I try to be rational and not let it get to me and most days, it doesn't. But sometimes....that green haze clouds my thinking and I have to walk away from the computer. Step away.

christina

Oh yes, I've been there, often. But if I let myself feel generous, then I am astounded by the beauty and inspiration that the people who make me envious can satturate my life with. It's hard to feel generous about these things though--and I feel a certain mechanism in me click in around someone--or reading someone's blog--who makes me come up against the short and narrow sides of myself. Thank you for being generous--you always are--with your kind, thoughtful comments--and with your posts that always make me ponder, think, wonder, or sigh at their beauty.

xo,
C

Darlene

This was interesting and by that I mean good interesting. One of the things I noticed right away in this blog community was that, even here, there are clicks. The same pictures pop up on the same sites and for that reason alone I have tried to do some blog hopping. But, one can't help an almost gravitational pull towards another person and that's how friendships form...and that's a good thing. I was warned ahead of time about feeling competitive with others and not to look at our comment numbers (remember we only do this for ourselves...right?)but, it's hard not to. Wow, I just took a really long (blank think) break, because I really wanted to be honest in what I say about this. I am appreciating your honesty in bringing up this issue and I've had my feelings hurt already and I'm pretty new at this. I can only imagine the hurt others have felt who have been doing this for a long time. Staying positive is important and for myself, I try to do my best. Things that I think are fantastic get 3 comments and then things that I think are so so get 11 comments and then really dumb things get 20 comments, so even if I compete with me, I can't win :) Did that make sense?

Well, having said all that...I think you are a wonderful writer, and I always look forward to reading what you post. And that's my honest, less complicated, truth.

thanks Michelle :)
XxDarlene

liz elayne

my dear girl...how connected we are in this world of blogging even we have only connected through comments and email (so far!). envy is a word i am ready to claim at this point. yep. claiming it. and blogger envy, yes, something i also know about.

thank you for sharing with such honesty. you do this every day and i appreciate it so much. it nudges me to do the same.

Melba

I remember in February when Kat was leading the Artist Way and I made a prompt for Mixed Media Memoirs; "If I peeled back the layers They would see..." and for me I wrote about how I feel jealous of popular bloggers. Kat emailed me and asked me who I was jealous of and I named several bloggers and you were one of them. I am still jealous of you at times, not in a negative way...I want us both to have love and happiness.

I just re-read some of that post from February and you commented and said you get jealous sometimes too. here is the permalink; it is funny to look back.
http://www.bealivebelievebeyou.com/believe/2006/02/if_i_peeled_bac.html


I am not so much a comment counter or a traffic watcher as I was when I first started blogging. (although I am aware of which bloggers I read that get the most comments) I think it is because as my connections grow deeper I know more, I trust more that my tribe will be there for me regardless of how many times I post or if I comment on every one of their posts.

I do have moments (many moments) when I question why aren't I connecting even MORE. Like somehow I will never be satisfied. I use to not be satisfied in many areas of my life...I felt thirsty all the time. It is not like that now...I just see these little communities forming of bloggers I like and think are cool and sometimes I wonder "what about me? Am I cool too?"

I often wonder too why more bloggers don't participate in Mixed Media Memoirs. Some challenge blogs get so many participants every week. I enjoy MMM and do it for me, still...

For me there is still doubt when it comes to blogging. Not my committment to my blog or the community, but there is still doubt...maybe doubt is not the right word. There are still questions for me. Questions of what happens next? Where will blogging take us? How long will these connections last?
and the big one for me right now, Will anyone come to justBe...?

samantha

Now we're letting it ALL HANG OUT!

"My belief that there isn't enough for everyone" - that is it, in a nutshell, for me. I have had the hardest time with that concept, even when we were doing Artist's Way. Because in my heart I wasn't being generous - and I was so jealous of everyone making these creative breakthroughs. Lord help me, I might need to do some morning pages on that concept alone...

Absolutely I have suffered from blogger envy. I am absolutely astounded by the writers out there - and we are generally very supportive of each other in this circle we've got, thank goodness. I've come to realize that we're all rivers running to the ocean -and we're giving each other so much, trusting each other so much. And comments! I've been doing this for almost three years and never seem to crack past 12 - but now I'm very used to it and treat every comment like a gift. Messages that buoy me, or make me laugh. But I can get pretty cranky if I think I've written something AWESOME and there are no comments.

But let's not speak of an enemy of mine who opened a blog...and got several links from one of the highest level bloggers. It was like, someone find me a tall building! But over time I have laughed over it, and thought how wonderful it is that someone who hurt me dreadfully has found a community - there's something wonderful about that. But it took me a lot of very green moments to get to that point.

But you, my dearest michelle who doesn't live so far from me - think about it, only ONE state between us - are golden. You are such the WOMAN to post this.

Michelle

I enjoyed hearing what you had to say, and think you bring up a valid subject that isn't discussed much except for one woman to say how perfect (or imperfect) another woman is. I guess I know what you mean about being jealous, when I started blogging, or rather started blogging for others besides myself, I felt like I was back in high school wanting to sit at the popular girls' lunch table and afraid to take a seat since everyone obviously knew what they were doing and had huge blogrolls of fans they prodigiously read and linked to. But the thing that has been a pleasant surprise is that everyone I've had contact with seems to have no problem scooting over and making some room for someone else at the table (if I can wear my weak metaphor out) and have been quick with good advice, kind words and much needed comments.

Plus, meeting people through the internet I've found there to be so many less ways to judge someone superficially--by what they're wearing or how their hair is or how heavy/skinny they are--instead you only see what they've produced artistically/intellectually which I think is great progress.

Thanks for such a thought-provoking post, I'll have to check in again. (*I'm so jealous! What a great site she has!*) :)

tongue in cheek

Michelle, I have admired you from the first day I read your blog...Your honesty, and way of writing is full of depth, it has a nautral flow that I admire!
I have never thought about anyone being jealous over my blog, though I have felt awed, completely in awe of many bloggers to the point of wanting to never write again, because I have felt pale by the comparison. Then someone will leave a messge that encourages me,reminding me it is not how big a blog is, how many whistles and horns a blog has, it is simply coming to the table with what I have and share it.
You teach me this everyday, even now.
Thank you Michelle.

Hundred and one

You are so not the only one when it comes to blogger envy. Phew, I thought I was really petty to feel this way (how come nobody links to my blog? How come I don't get as many comments etc) so I am relieved to find out that I am not the only one afterall. Thank you so much for this post and for being so honest about feelings we would much rather keep hidden.

gkgirl

so many of the things
you said in this
made me stop cold...
because i honestly and truly
know what you mean...
the linking,
the comments,
the feeling of having
affected people...

and i love what you say
about being there for
each other, for support,
and cheering and
connection...
bravo.

susannah

the comments thing is interesting isn't it - i remember one time i visited a blog and her last post had had so many comments i was a little green - but then i thought how perhaps i didn't want the whole world reading my blog, how that seemed too visible, and so a little scary... which is why i haven't joined any technorati-style groups (or whatever they are called). i treasure the connections i have made through blogging (and you're included in that, baby :-) and work hard to spread the love around. we are all the same, simply flesh and blood, doing our best. you and Liz have been airing important issues today! xx

jos

What strikes me about your dialogue here is the power of society among women. Even over the lines, and with people who are strangers, we quickly form a society and bring along everthing that usually goes with it.

I have small bouts of envy, too. Especially when it comes to commentors. It's almost like I'm back in high school and wondering how the popular kids are so popular, and why I'm not.

But, I am conscious of it, and I do not let it keep me from getting everything positive out of the experience, and I never let it keep me from giving, either. I'm proud to say that, it's an accomplishment indeed.

colorsonmymind

Ok-I envy you my lady-with love-you take such beautiful photos AND you really do seem to put feelings I am having into beautifully written blog posts-I envy your ability to communicate them when I feel like they are sometimes stuck in my throat.

I have definitely felt this way about other bloggers and try my best not to pay attention to the things that make me feel this way (blog rolls, # of comments on other blogs and linking.

Love to you

bee

hi, michelle,

i've only been commenting/visiting here a little while but it's just so beautiful how you are being honest with your emotions here, "good, bad and ugly".
maybe it's naive of me, but i truly think that if feelings are presented honestly, without the intention to provoke a reaction (if that makes sense)...just to give testimony to where you are, at this moment, in this day, that it can only help and cleanse. you, from what i see here and in other posts, are only doing this.
it still is an incredibly hard, beautiful thing to do - to own feelings that are uncomfortable, but you do it so gracefully, and you pave the way for other people to do it as well.
thank you, and your brave spirit.

C. Delia

Interesting stuff...important stuff...I left a wandering comment over at Liz's site yesterday, noticing your comment on blogger-envy there as well. I have been envious of your beautiful words and your pictures that stop me cold. I am JUST learning about photography and I tell myself that since I'm such a photo-virgin, it doesn't matter how things look and (unlike my writing for me) it isn't "career-oriented" so it's just "fun". Well, then I see an image and say, "Damn, how did she do that?" I blogged "in a vaccum" for quite a while and felt good about it...if I didn't post for two weeks, I didn't miss anything. Now, it has shifted a bit--but, I've been SO inspired. More inspired than envious, which is what keeps me going...I do have my own "shit" about the high-school girls who "done me wrong" way back when, which will surface now and then with blogging...and YES there is so much of my story/myself/my writing I cannot share/dare not share b/c my family reads my blog as well. Still, it serves me as an outlet for my creative work...just one. I love the idea of building friendships/communities of like-minded souls. Right now, I am open and sharing how I can. I am reading and responding as I can. I am moved often by your words and others'--I think about Whitman, (not being pretentious here either, just an English teacher, so this is how I actually think) and the quote I have tacked up on my wall, "I exist as I am...that is enough." Thank you for your open notebook/honest words today.

Elizabeth

Michelle, you are so lovely (that photo in the post below is SO lovely!).

I've gotten to the point in my life where all the 'negative' emotions have power and validity. Anger, which used to scare me to death and caused me to try and bury it, is now seen as a great engine when well directed. I still don't have my arms wrapped around Fear, but I'm trying to get there-- with Jealousy it's harder. What's to like about jealousy? But I think you tapped into the core switch; if you think there isn't enough for all, then if someone has something you can't have that same thing-- and that's where I think the power of change comes in. The universe is WILDLY abundant-- there isn't just one pink flower, or one kind of fish or one way to cook potatoes-- there IS enough for all-- and once you truly accept that-- then when the jealousy hits, I feel more, hmm, that's something I would like, too-- how can I get me some of that? Not hers, but my own.

Also, I think jealousy has to do with personal power. If someone you think is 'better' 'cooler' 'more important' than you-- is wearing red pants then those red pants take on a whole different cachet and meaning. Must. Have. Those. Red. Pants-- but really, what you are craving is the personal power of that person. And that is something we can all have-- when we believe in ourselves, honor ourselves, find and celebrate what is uniquely wonderful about us.

Blah blah blah-- so sorry for my pollyanna platitudes hijacking your comments-- love you--

deirdre

I have moments when I feel that little stab of jealousy too. Sometimes it's over writing that's so achingly beautiful that I think I have no business ever writing again. Other times it's over the number of comments. I'm able to pull myself out of that pretty quickly when I think about the admiration I have for the women who come to my blog and leave their words. Then I know how incredibly lucky I am and so, so grateful. Even so, I worry if I haven't "seen" someone for a while - a little voice of rejection whispers junior high jabs at me. What if they don't like me anymore? Getting the grownup voice to counter that takes a little doing. Hmm. What a growth opportunity. :)

Imelda

Hey! Have you hit on something here! See? Many people feel some of this, it seems. I'm not called GreenishLady for nothing. I think The Artist's Way group spoiled me a bit. There were so many people at that time checking in with one another, it was literally a great web of support and contact, and since then, a fragmenting at times. BUT, but, but... I have come to value the regular visits of a small number of people, and the occasional visits of larger numbers at times, and one thing I have noticed is that a few of my favourite, visit-every-day blogs are long-time, mature bloggers who write every day as a practice, and don't seem to mind who drops by, and quite often have just 2 or 3 comments. In other words, I can relate to what you're saying, but find I only feel like that at times, and most of the time, realise that my blog is for many reasons not connected to the people who may (or may not) read it. And I find (final comment), that I read many more blogs than I can comment on, and that applies to the many that I really appreciate so much - including yours.

DebR

I wrestle with the blog envy thing a LOT. All of it - comments, links in posts, links in sidebars, bloglines subscriber numbers, feeling like an outsider, feeling envy of fabulous blog content (both writing and photos) even though often times the content I'm envying is nothing I could or even WOULD do in a lifetime of trying. I am who I am.

I try really, really hard to fight that envious feeling though. Like you say, it's such a waste of time and energy - time and energy that could be put to so much better use on other things. And it's not like any of us can control how others feel about us. All we can do is be the best person we can be and hope that resonates with some few people out there and we make some connections. It's a struggle though, human nature being what it is. I think most of us have that little voice inside that wonders why others don't like us the very best of all. :-)

bb

I think we've all thought about this at one time or another, with changing opinions, I think my opinion has probably even changed since I commented on Liz's site earlier :-)

For me it is not so much envy as dismay. I don't watch my site traffic but I do 'get my hopes up' about comments, because I want to hear what other people think of my writing. validation - right?

what dismays me is that when connections are springing up here there and everywhere, and there seems a few people who are the central force of this, I dismay at myself that blogging was supposed to be a new way of connecting with people, in a way that i find difficult in 'real life'. then I find that I'm not so good at doing it in blogland either and there are always going to be others who are people orientated, and find connections easier than I do.

perhaps what i'm trying to say is that sometimes blogging helps ease my feelings of isolation, and other times it magnifies them.

love to you sweetness, for posting about this x

(p.s. I loved your post refusing your imperfections yesterday too. and what a stunning portrait of you :-))

MB

"If none of this rings true for you then, well, I envy you." Oh, Michelle, I laughed at that one. Of course, guilty as charged, I suspect we all feel it to one degree or another. But I don't stay there. I'd rather enjoy the possibilities in others... together!

joleen

I completely know what you mean! This is actually a frequently discussed conversation between me + friends. Sometimes I just don't get why some bloggers are so 'famous'... I think that's honestly when I'm the most bothered. It's incredibly silly and I try not to let this type of thing bother me but it does. I'm sure it's like that for a lot of people! Anyway, just so you know, I think your writing is incredibly beautiful + insightful (sp?) and your photography is something I strive for! xo

rach

You are so right and your words ring true for me in so many ways. A great post Michelle

snowsparkle

michelle, this is a very insightful post and i admire you for your honesty and wisdom at owning your envy. i think my issue is not so much envy but more the "left out" feeling. it's only been lately that i have felt "chosen" and sometimes i think the addiction to attention it can create is an even worse issue than envy. everyone wants to be "seen" and "cherished"... is that so wrong? Maybe so, if we limit the seeing and cherishing to those people the fashion and entertainment industries tell us are worthy of our attentions.

Alexandra

I'm so glad you wrote about this Michelle. Envy is something I have struggled with on and off at many different points in my life-sometimes its been envying someone from afar and sometimes its been the people closest to me. Usually I have found what I do with envy is turn it into a bat which I then hit myself repeatedly with over the head by comparing myself (extremely unfavorably) to the other person. I think that I do this much less than I use to but I've sort of made peace with envy, knowing that nearly everyone feels it at times, and if I go deeper and dialogue with it, I know that envy is a gift in disguise that I'm meant to listen to and understand.

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