Good morning! If you’ve been with us for Day 1, welcome back! I’m so proud of you for continuing on! If you haven’t snagged a copy yet, it’s not too late to get yours and join us! Head on over to Make Over Your Mornings to get yours now. The workbook that comes with it is invaluable – not to mention the personal videos you get to watch each day featuring Money Saving Mom‘s very own Crystal Paine. You can find Day 1’s Blog Along post here to catch up. And if you’re looking for a testimony to how wonderful this program works, you can find mine here.
Have your copy and ready to start changing your life? LET’S GO!
I love how honest Crystal was when she said that even after years of honing her goal-setting skills, she still experiences failure from time to time. That is so important to remember! We are all going to fail at one thing or another, and THAT’S OKAY. Failure isn’t a measure of our lack of ability. Rather, it is a method of teaching so that we learn what not to do.
I completed this course the first time this past summer. I was so amped up about making these lifestyle changes so that I could be a better me for not only myself and my family but for others as well. Building these routines and not overwhelming myself with larger than I can chew goals and task lists created a freedom in my schedule to do for others without feeling like I was then failing in my own family. Instead of wanting to take time to visit with a friend and doing so, I’d often feel the burden of everything there was “to get done”, and I let that keep me from pouring myself out to others. After going through this course and learning how to better handle my days, it gave me the ability to give of my time to others without feeling that burden.
I had finally reached a point in my life where I was fed up, tired, weary, and ready for a change. I fully believe that those very things are what have helped me to be so successful in this course. It gave me the determination to keep going through the 14 days, and once I saw just how wonderfully things were transforming in my habits and routines and how those helped diminish the stresses and frustrations of every day, I didn’t want to stop!
The thing is, there are times life will throw us a curve ball, and it will knock us off our platform. We will fail at reaching a goal. We will fail at sticking to a morning routine. The point is not to let that keep us down. We have to get back up and try again.
When I first started this course, I established what my morning routine would consist of. I was going to do a daily devotional over coffee, spend time in prayer, workout, and then tackle things like emails, grocery lists, and updating listings for my online shop. I spent many weeks in this routine. While I loved that for the first time ever I was actually sticking with a routine, I didn’t love that my blogging still wasn’t getting done. It was one of the top priorities on my business goals list, yet I couldn’t manage to get the time to do it. Ultimately, I was failing at accomplishing one of my huge goals.
Let me just say, I am not generally a person that takes a positive approach to failure. I don’t even usually take a constructive approach. Sure, I learn what to not do again. But I don’t try again, either. I am so quick to let things get me down, and personal failures are a doozy for me. Or, at least, they have been in the past. Somehow, reaching the point in my life where I truly want to change has helped me to get back up again. I feel as though I’m coming in to adulthood (albeit in my thirties) because of the fact that I am not giving up and giving in like I used to. There are always going to be failures in life. We just have to learn to look past them and not let them define us. So, I took another hard look at my morning routine, my goals, and my non-negotiables and came up with a plan. Now, my morning routine includes blogging instead of emails, grocery lists and listings. Just moving it to that time slot of first thing in the morning has allowed me to do something I haven’t done in the year this blog has existed: blog daily! Shoot, I wasn’t even blogging once a week before I rearranged my morning routine!
The sermon in church today was about getting back up when we fall. For me, this message couldn’t have come at a more perfect time in my life. I have been struggling with several failures these past couple of months, and it’s almost gotten the best of me at times.
Part of my income comes from the items I sew, and right now is a big time for crafters to make what will most likely be the majority of their income for the year: craft show time. I have never taken part in a craft show before, but was very much hoping to be a part of one this year. I dearly wanted to take part of a huge event just a few hours from here this summer, but couldn’t get the booth fee together in time to make the deadline. I was disappointed, but I persevered. I was determined to make it to the event they held in the winter. As it turned out, when the submissions were being taken just a few weeks ago for the winter event, the booth fee was quite a bit higher than even the summer event, and alas, I couldn’t come up with it in time. The second let down wasn’t as easy to take as the first, but I decided to just move on from that and hope for next year.
In the meantime, there was a local event taking place with a very minimal fee, so I decided that would be my best bet. I could afford to pay the fee considering one pair of baby shoes would more than pay me back. I knew I would really have to crunch time because I am a made-to-order shop, so I don’t keep stock on hand. I figured I’d put 50 skirts together and 25 pairs of shoes and go with that. I’d make a book with all of the products available so that if I ran out, patrons could still see my products and order them.
Originally, I was going to have two and a half weeks to prepare for the show. As it turned out, I had a large custom order placed just before the 2 1/2 week mark began, but it ended up running a week over on completing because I ran into issues. Of course. Isn’t that how it always works? When you’re not pushed for time, things run smoothly. But when your back’s to the wall, everything goes awry. So, I had a week and a half to knock out 75 items.
I stayed home from a weekend trip that was scheduled for my husband and I and a group of our friends. I worked my butt off for ten and twelve hours at a time, shoveling bowls of cereal down my throat as I worked, not having time for breaks, and going until my eyes couldn’t take it anymore and had to rest. My grandma graciously came in that week and watched the toddler so I could lock myself in my sewing room and work like a maniac. A sweet soul heard my cry for help on a Facebook post asking for an assistant that could spare a few hours a couple of days that week to put together things like the book of items and string elastic through waistbands on skirts, and she came over to help that week. All-in-all, I worked tirelessly to no avail. I ended up sick from the lack of sleep, and ultimately didn’t have an actual piece finished because I was working assembly-line style.
Talk about feeling like a failure! All that work, all that time away from my family, all the help I received just to help me succeed, and I still failed. I spent that Saturday (the day of the show) in bed wallowing in misery at how I just couldn’t seem to make it work no matter how hard I tried. I got up Sunday, went to church, came home and cleaned house, and felt like I was ready for a fresh start (the clean house really helped lift my spirits!) The next day I decided to start this blog along.
Want to know a secret? I shut the door to my sewing room that Sunday and haven’t opened it since. It’s been two weeks!
I’m haven’t giving up on sewing. I just got burnt out. I LOVE to sew. But after the disappointments I went through over and over, I just needed a break. I’m not looking at these past few months of sewing failures as failures anymore. They were important lessons I needed to learn.
I know there are plenty of people that gear up for the crafting season and work tirelessly from September to December (and sometimes more). That’s not for me. I know it takes more than an 8 to 5 when you’re trying to build a business, and I’m okay with that. What I’m not okay with is sacrificing time with my family for weeks and months on end. It’s not fair to me and especially not to them. Like I said, my business being made-to-order means that I spend so much more time than others that have stock built up. And when a single item takes a minimum of two to three hours to complete, it adds up to a whole lot when you’re trying to do it in bulk. I have nothing against anyone that chooses to hit the grinder during craft show season. I’m all for it! I love seeing your handmade items being loved by the world! For me, however, I’ve discovered it’s just not something that works. Much like Pampered Chef and other direct sales companies. We all have things that work for us, and this just wasn’t mine.
Even though it took a brutal few lessons, I’m so glad that I found out now instead of later that I’m not cut out for the craft show world. It is saving me a lot of time and energy to know that now! What it did do for me was to make me sit back and examine everything regarding my sewing business, where I wanted it to go, and what I wanted to take from it.
I came to realize that I don’t want to sew items that I sell on Etsy for a living. I love sewing so much, but it takes the passion I feel for it out when I’m racing the clock to meet an order deadline. Plus, the pay isn’t even minimum wage! I get so much anxiety built up while making something because I want it to be perfect for the recipient, and I’m constantly worried about how they will like it, and it ends up taking the enjoyment out of creating. It’s also stressful. There are so many to compete with on a platform like Etsy. And unfortunately, I have an easily bored problem. I get excited making something new, but after about the tenth one, I’m totally over it and ready to move on. That’s not exactly good for running a business where you make the same things over and over!
After many brainstorming sessions and digging deep to really try to nail down what I could do with my gift that also wouldn’t burn me out, I realized that sewing classes could be just what I was looking for. I love to help others, and helping others learn something that can be so valuable to them and others makes my heart swell. I made it a new goal just in the last two weeks and have been ticking items off of my bite-sized pieces each day. And, I officially have my first sewing class scheduled and full!
I may, and probably will, go through learning lessons with the sewing classes. I’m good with that. The point is, I didn’t let all of the failures from the past couple of months keep me down. I got back up and figured out where to go from there. Yes, I totally took a day to wallow and feel sorry for myself. Take a day if you need to. Binge watch a show you’ve been wanting to see. Read that new book you’ve been dying to get your hands on. Eat ice cream in your pj’s on the couch while you watch a sappy movie on Lifetime. Whatever you do, just get back up and go right back at it. And make sure you’re trying it a different way.
Einstein said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” So, if you fail, just take a different route next time. Otherwise, you’re insane. 😉
I’ll be back here tomorrow with my experiences and thoughts from Day Fourteen! And don’t forget, if you still haven’t gotten your hands on a copy of the Make Over Your Mornings e-course, you can do that here.
Do you have a hard time overcoming failure? Will you make a pact with me to push yourself beyond your failures and continue on toward success in whatever you do?