Competition versus Community – finding balance.

First – this post holds no secret answers.  Just some meandering thoughts that wanted to be expressed while i sip hot chocolate with a dash of coffee in it for good measure.  balance.
Everything we do, we do for a reason. Sometimes the reasons are community minded, and sometimes they are self-preservation minded, but either way, our decisions affect both ourselves and the world around us.
Like my hot beverage today – hot chocolate – personally motivated comfort food on a cold morning, but with a touch of coffee – purposeful, ‘get me going to face the world” kind of subtle touch, that brings me out of my cocoon and into the public. balance.
Sometimes it’s just straight coffee – get out there and face the day with gusto and get on with it.
And when it’s straight hot chocolate, it’s time to take a time out – “me” time to recharge and contemplate – and when there’s Bailey’s or Sortilege in there… well, let’s get back to the topic at hand.
Competition – good for the customer as it provides choices and forces the service providers to step it up and keep working on improving their products and services to meet the needs of their clients – new and existing.
Community – we all need support at a times from our colleagues who are going through the same thing as we are – be it in business, hobbies, health, anything that touches our lives. Having a community to be a part of is important, to various degrees, as a human being and a member of society in general.
So there we are, offering a service that is offered in a similar fashion by others we consider friends and good people, and there are so many of us – are there too many? Is it spreading our customer base too thinly so that no one can earn a living?  Do we fall into the terrible trap of starting to negatively think about those good friends and deem their services less valid than our own?
And what about that community feeling we all want – is it just to stroke our own egos and make us feel better about ourselves, and yet we find it difficult to give back that same support we might be seeking?
We are all insecure at times. We all find ourselves trying to balance fulfilling our own dreams while knowing that someone else also has the same dreams and maybe we have to vie for the same people to support both of our dreams.
But is there enough to go around? There might be, if we make the choice to not “need” so much.
I know this is a very vague post – and it’s not so much because I am thinking of specifics and don’t want to name names; it’s vague because I’ve been seeing this balancing act to various degrees in so many peoples lives around me for years now.  It affects the dance world, it affects the social media world, arts of all types, event offerings, the bridal world, the eco-friendly world, it’s everywhere.
So what do you do about it?
Years ago, I read a book. Yeah, helpful I know. It was a bit all over the place, but the gist that I got of it was seeking out multiple streams of income < competition> and win-win scenarios <community>.
And that was what stuck with me – I think those who know me can easily see the first one – I do try to find multiple ways to generate the income I need to pay the rent and eat.
And I hope that the 2nd element also comes through in my actions. As much as possible, I try to find the win-win solution in situations.
But every once in a while, I look at what others around me are doing and I wonder, am I doing enough?  Am I promoting myself enough, am I doing my best at whatever it is I am trying to achieve < and this is my competitive side emerging to stir things up>.  And isn’t everyone else going through the same thing, no matter how confident and put together they may seem to be to the outside world?
I think we need both. and we need to be grateful for both.  balance.
Tracey/ Halyma
Thanks for reading if you took the time – I value your time shared with me.
This morning, on the first extended early morning walk I’ve taken in a while, I was blessed with a teacher.  The universe is infinitely fast in it’s responses to our great life questions if we are paying attention. In a literal moment that transcended into the metaphysical aspects of my own personally created reality, < you like that? #flakyphrasingbuttotallytrue >, one of my purposes was reiterated.  Simply and succinctly over a 10 minute period.

5 thoughts on “Competition versus Community – finding balance.

  1. loved your piece……..the important fact of finding balance in the world is a very important component these days you can become soooo drained…. thanks cheers gaye….in your dance class

  2. This is a very interesting topic, but difficult to discuss…from a ‘client’ perspective, there certainly can be a darker aspect to the competition vs community balancing act. Regardless of any personal axe to grind, I wish to convey kudos, admiration, and support for the artistic folks who earn their living from the sweat of their creativity, and the community in general, as it’s (mostly) been very good to me.

  3. Thank you for this very timely post. I’ve been having almost the exact same thoughts recently. Trying to keep the balance going between community support and the income streams flow. Knowing I need income to pay the rent and bills but wanting to be more involved with community events but not having the money to participate. For me it is frustrating to not have the funds needed to be fully supportive and involved with the communities.
    The one thing I’ve noticed (this is a personal observation only) is that the people who used to seem so keen to have me around when I had funds and time and energy to spend on their events have disappeared from my life. I guess it is in the hard times that we discover where the give and take happens in our lives. It was really hard, emotionally, to realize that many of these people were folks I had helped out and/or supported in their hard times. In contrast… I’ve also discovered the truest friends were not necessarily where I expected to find them. Strangely, some have turned out to be those I thought were more ‘acquaintances’ or even my competition in my various income streams. People I barely knew have stepped up to help during the last couple of years when times have been extremely tough. And I do everything I can to make them know and feel how appreciative I am of that support. Having 3 total strangers (yes, people I’ve never met) send small donations to help me keep my rent and bills paid!!! WOW!!! With the promise that I would somehow pay it forward… and I will.
    So I do a lot of volunteering for low and limited income folks in the ‘hood and give away stuff I don’t need or don’t use any more. This is how I give back. BUT… the balancing act is super tough.
    Just so you know… I thank you every day for all of the help and support you have given over the years and hope I am able to catch up with the pay back 🙂

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