How to Approach LinkedIn in a Balanced Way When You’re Going Crazy from Comparing Yourself to Others
Still don’t know what you’re doing for Summer 2023 and feeling like you’re falling behind everyone else in college life? It’s April. Spring semester is closing out, graduation season is in session, and many are thinking about what this summer will look like.
Maybe that friend from high school posted about securing an internship with the Fortune 500 company of your dreams and your freshman year roommate announced an internship at the Capitol to build out her law school application. Oh, and your classmate from economics that bored your brains out just landed a full-time gig in LA.
Your LinkedIn feed is probably flooded with celebration posts and while you’re happy for them, you may be feeling a certain type of way. We’ve all been in that boat and as much as we are thrilled for our friends and those in our network, imposter syndrome and the feeling of being left behind is common. Feeling it doesn’t make you a bad person. At times, LinkedIn can be a stressful platform and allow you to play the comparison game.
How LinkedIn Can Be A Useful Platform
LinkedIn is unlike many other social media platforms out there. It’s a great platform to build your skills, navigate your professional journey, establish your career network, and find a job. Your LinkedIn profile is a great way to highlight your skills and experiences to complement your resume because it shows off a bit of your personality to recruiters and hiring managers.
How LinkedIn Can Be A Stressful Platform
It is human nature to compare yourself to others, and this instinct is infinitely more powerful on social media… It can be hard to drop the comparison game when you’re bombarded by the accomplishments of your peers, those in the early stages of their career, or those you admire. It’s easy to feel like every step you take forward barely means a thing compared to those who are landing groundbreaking research positions, prestigious internships, or fulfilling full time offers.
LinkedIn can perpetuate a need to achieve and make hustle culture all the more prevalent. However, we all have to make the effort not to dwindle our achievements to those around us and truly appreciate how far we’ve come in our own journeys. Remember that you’re likely only seeing the most favorable moments of a person’s career on your LinkedIn feed… and not the struggles it took to get them there.
How To Best Approach LinkedIn
Recognize how squiggly your path can be — you do not have to have this cookie cutter linear career path that you may expect. You do not need to have everything figured out at the same rate as other people. Whenever you’re scrolling through your feed, try remembering that comparison is a thief of joy. Remind yourself that you’re going at your own pace, and that’s perfectly fine.
Keep networking and learning. Reach out and have coffee chats with people in roles that you’re interested in, or those who share a common thread with you (e.g. university, sorority, volunteer program, or student organization). People love to talk about themselves, so practice active listening. Know that they were once in the same position as you and genuinely want to help you.
Utilize the features that help you find jobs! Look for newly posted internships, new grad roles, and find out which managers and recruiters are hiring on pages like The Career Community by kkarenism. Don’t be afraid to scope out super senior roles and dream jobs that could become yours one day, this helps you understand what skills and experiences you need to build up along the way.
LinkedIn can be an incredibly useful and fulfilling platform if you use it right. I hope this helped to drown out the noise and reframe your mindset on how LinkedIn can be beneficial to you at any stage of your career!