Suze Orman Is Living My Life

Books on mantle at Portofino Hotel

44 – February 13

“There is no greater glory than love, nor any greater punishment than jealousy.”—Lope de Vega

Stayed up late last night, reading and writing…it was 12:30 A.M. but I was just charged up and couldn’t sleep. Finally, I got into bed and turned on the television so I could drowse off. And there she was, best-selling author of The 9 Steps to Financial Freedom, bright, cute and smiling all over Oprah. It wasn’t enough that she had her own PBS special running forever like the Taebo of financial fitness. The whole Oprah show was a paean to her. Money sparkled in her eyes, success dripped off her nose, and her stature proclaimed “Millions of Books Sold, Millions of Books Sold!”

Meanwhile, I didn’t have a publisher yet.

Saint Chellie chirps, “Isn’t that wonderful? She deserves her success and is helping many people. There’s room for everyone!” Demon Chellie howls at the moon. I want a stiff drink and twelve cigarettes, but I swore off those things and won’t go there. So screw the diet—I eat pie for breakfast. Marie Calendar apple pie. Turns out it’s fat free. Rats. Saint Chellie’s been messing with my grocery list.

I reread Anne Lamott’s chapter on jealousy in Bird by Bird, her wonderfully irreverent instruction book on writing. She writes you’re going to have to deal with jealousy “because some wonderful, dazzling successes are going to happen for some of the most awful, angry, undeserving writers you know—people who are, in other words, not you.” I read her story of how she processed her envy through talking with friends, reading books and finally, writing her way back to equilibrium. I realize I’m doing that, too. She makes me laugh, quoting a Clive James poem that begins “The Book of My Enemy Has Been Remaindered. And I am pleased.” The sun peeks out from behind my mood and the day lightens.

I check my e-mail: My cousin has a group that wants to pay me to come speak in Atlanta. I know this is a sign: The world’s big enough for the two of us, Suze and me. She’ll reach some people with her work and I’ll reach some with mine. We’re different people with different voices singing in the same choir. She’s a soprano and I’m an alto. She’s a blond and I’m a redhead. She’s famous and I’m…getting there!

Today’s Affirmation:
“I applaud other people’s successes because they point the way to my own.”

For some time, I really was jealous of Suze. One night, in one of my workshops I made a comment about how she had beat me to Oprah, and I wasn’t pleased. A man in the class set me straight right away: “You should be thanking Suze Orman. She’s proved there’s a market for what you do!”

I stopped and looked at him and cocked my head. “You know, I never thought about it that way before. You’re right! I should be glad she’s out there blazing the trail and making it easier for the rest of us women financial educators to have credibility and be taken seriously. Thank you for sharing that!”

There was a conversation I joined in on Facebook a while ago, started by my friend and coach, Karyn Greenstreet. A few people mentioned how they felt it was hard for them to be in business because there was so much competition. It was wonderful to see how many people chimed in to say that each person is unique and wonderful with gifts to share that will be needed by the very people who find them and hire them. Here are a few of the comments:

Karyn began with: “No! No! No! I got an email from a student today who said she wasn’t going to launch her class because she found out that a competitor had a similar class. There is abundance all around us, and you will draw the right students to your class not just because of WHAT you teach, but WHO the teacher is (you!). Do not give up on your dream just because someone else has the same idea.”

“Thanks…. I had the exact same experience today! And when I saw how similar another amazing female entrepreneur’s idea was to mine… I gasped for a moment and then took it as positive affirmation!”

“When the zeitgeist (the spirit of the times) is right, you’ll see LOTS of people talking about the same topics. Some will write blog posts on it, some will write books, some will create audios or videos, some will create classes, some will just discuss it with friends. From a practical business point of view, having competition is a GOOD thing: it means that there is a market for what you want to sell.”

“…who cares that someone else is doing something similar, similar is not the same, it cannot be the same… each person has their own process they take people through and it will never be the same as someone else’s.”

“Thanks for this…I too suffer from ‘I-don’t-want-to-be-in-direct-competition-itis!’ LOL”

“A friend recently told me that if many people are teaching the same topic you’re passionate about, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it. It means that topic is so important that it needs more than one messenger.”

And I think this comment from Karyn was the capper:

“I was just thinking: Can you imagine if the folks who wrote West Side Story said, ‘Oh, someone’s already done this story. Let’s not do it. There’s too much competition with that Shakespeare feller.’ LOL”

What has “The Competition” stopped you from doing?

Prosperity is a habit. You have to practice it every day.

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Chellie Campbell is a Financial Stress Reduction® Coach and the author of The Wealthy Spirit, Zero to Zillionaire, and From Worry to Wealthy. She is one of Marci Shimoff's “Happy 100” in her NYT bestseller Happy for No Reason and contributed stories to Jack Canfield’s books You’ve Got to Read This Book! and Life Lessons from Chicken Soup for the Soul. Past president of the LA Chapter NAWBO, she was "Most Inspirational Speaker" by Women in Management and "Speaker of the Year" by the Association of Women Entrepreneurs. She does daily inspirational videos in The Wealthy Spirit Group on Facebook.

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