How Jealousy Plagues Your Hustle

Last week Sara Dietschy, one of my favorite YouTubers, tweeted out Don’t get when artists/entrepreneurs exhibit jealousy when ppl they know win. Guilty as charged! I can’t even begin to tell you how many times my jealousy has skyrocketed when I see a friend of mine “win.” I know I should be stoked for her/him, but I mean come on, why didn’t I get the opportunity?Justin Fricke sitting along the shore of Lake Superior at Pictured Rocks in Michigan

Real talk: Columbia Sportswear started this program in the spring of 2012 called #OmniTen. They picked 10 social media influencers and took them on one heck of a trip to a press event in Sedona, then threw them at the bottom of the Grand Canyon, and topped it all off with a backpacking trip to Havasu Falls. The whole concept was for these select social media influences that are rooted in the outdoors to test gear, build hype on social media, and inspire others to get out and go on adventures.

I started The Weekend Warrior in April of 2013, about the same time the spring 2013 team was gearing up for their epic adventure. That’s the same time I was getting on social media (hooray for free marketing!) and that’s when I found out about #OmniTen. By some miracle Columbia Sportswear contacted me around August or September of 2013 asking me some questions about myself and specifically, my knowledge in snow sports. I know more about snow sports than most Floridians, but nowhere near as much as someone from out west or up north. Shocking surprise, when I followed up they let me know they were pretty set and a couple months later I saw a lot of happy posts all over social media. I made it to their short list of influencers, but wasn’t picked. 10 new #OmniTen were sending out celebratory tweets and the veteran #OmniTen teams we congratulating them. And there I was in my cubicle on the third floor of an office building in downtown Orlando. I was mad I didn’t get picked. And I was jealous.

In 2013 I wanted nothing more than to be recognized for my blog that had no direction and wasn’t even a year old. I also wanted to impress a girl and try to find a way to get this blog to pay for itself. But I wasn’t ready and I’m a totally believe that when you’re ready, opportunities present themselves and it’s your job to take advantage of those opportunities.

Lack of patience is only half of this equation. Insecurities clout my mind on a daily basis. Maybe you feel the same way. When I see a photographer friend of mine post a photo from a photo shoot location I begin nitpicking her/his work to mine and trying to figure out what I have to do to get the coveted call from a producer/client to be the photographer on a photo shoot. I do the same thing when I see a friend of mine announce a new writing gig or take to social media, sourcing questions for an article they’re writing. As you might know, comparison sucks and leads to insecurities, but they’re a part of life and I think the best way to overcome them is to take pride in your work and that you’ll get your chance if you keep hustling (going back to that patience thing).

Three years later and I’m glad things didn’t go down the way I wanted them to go down. Unless you’re a big name like Jimmy Chin you usually get a big red “X” put on your forehead by companies when you’re an ambassador for or sponsored by one of their competitors (all assuming they look at your social media profiles). After the winter 2014 #OmniTen team went on their sweet adventure to Park City, UT Columbia did a couple more things with a select few of their #OmniTen ambassadors, but the program has dissolved for the most part.

In August 2015 I got a message from Merrell asking if I was open to partnership opportunities. One thing led to another and they’re now my main sponsor. I was stoked to be working with them and when I signed the contract to make it official, I took right to social media. I threw out my exciting news and it was met with loads of congratulations. I finally got the chance to feel the excitement that so many others had felt that I had been jealous of.

Jealousy plagues our minds because it’s easy to get mad and question others better judgement when it’s not our turn to win. It gets in the way of our own hustle. A little bit later I saw a follow up tweet from Sara.

RMBR: You win when your friends win. Surround urself w hustlers and take over the wrld together.


  1. says

    I get this. And like Jason said above, there isn’t much out there if you’re not a millennial; or as you noted, if you’re not at the top of the outdoors game like Jimmy Chin, Alex Honnold, or Steph Davis.

    But a couple things come to mind that are specific to me, and hopefully you can relate.

    First, my blog is not huge. It’s had its moments, but it’s not getting the massive traffic some outdoors blogs get. A lot of the more notable influencers have the traffic to back up their sponsorships and opportunities that mine does not.

    Second, I’ve never been to gatherings like Outdoor Retailer. With limited time off, I just don’t have time for it, to make those connections that lead to bigger and better things. The time off I do get is either spent with family or (gasp!) outdoors.

    Third, I know I’ve done right by the one partnership that’s come my way via Solomon. It’s a great company, and I think my reviews of their products have been fair and honest.

    But lastly, and most importantly, I’m good with it. I have goals, sure, and there’s no doubt it would have been amazing to be considered to be part of something like OmniTen or whatnot. But I go back to the reasons I started my blog in the first place. I like to write. I like to put together posts that people will find useful for future adventures. I like to advocate for causes I believe in. Score on all counts. So while there aren’t any sponsorships out there for me now, I still get a kick out of it, and it’s cool to see how folks like you and many others are getting recognized for the excellent work being produced in terms of outdoor media. If one of these days bigger sponsorships come around, awesome. If not, I hope that some of the content I’ve produced has been interesting, helpful or influential.

    And like Jason said above, congrats on getting to work with Merrell! Another great company, one where I’ve used and still used their stuff.

    Keep hustlin’!

  2. says

    I struggled mightily with this when I first really got into social media. As I mentioned in my FB comment, I don’t really get jealous of those that win, per se, I get annoyed at what the companies look for. At 41 but still sometimes doing 30-40 mile weekends with multiple mountain summits, there should be SOMETHING for me out there. But there isn’t… And there isn’t ever going to be. And I’ve made peace with that. But what I haven’t made peace with is that the companies give ambassadorships to outdoor phonies, people that don’t even ENJOY the outdoors. It’s not really jealousy for me any more, but just lamentation… Great article and as you said in your last paragraph, congrats on working with Merrell. Truly. 🙂

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