April 17, 2012

After 9 to 5 ~ Following the Path

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a print available in the after 9 to 5 shop.


Change Before You Have To


When I first began my journey as an entrepreneur, I stuck with what I knew. And what I knew was jewelry making. For me, jewelry making was something I stumbled into without any intent of it becoming anything more than a hobby. While I enjoyed doing it, it wasn't ever considered to be a strong passion of mine. Honestly? It was more so something to get my feet wet in the vast pool of self-employment.

Because of this, it lost the appeal that it originally had pretty quickly. It was no longer something I looked forward to doing during my work day and instead became something I dreaded doing. Something I'd push off and end up spending my weekends doing because I could no longer push it off and still have it mailed out on time. I watched it take the love I had for my business away from me, but had no clue how to put an end to it.

I was convinced for months that it was the journey I started on so it must be the journey I continued to be on. I fought the change that I knew needed to be made on a daily basis. I believed that there was no possible way to re-inject the passion, the love, and the creativity into my business and eventually came pretty close to throwing it all away and going back to the corporate world because of it.

Instead I did the hardest thing I've ever done: I completely changed my business.

I stopped producing jewelry and switched gears into decals, wall decor, and photographs. This was where my background was and it was something that I'd be practicing since I was in high school. It was where I belonged and where I needed to be, no matter how hard the switch was.


Did I lose customers? Yep.

Did I have people doubt my ability to manage my business? You bet.

Did sales suddenly come to a screeching halt in the beginning? They sure did.

I'd be lying if I said this change didn't make me doubt myself more than I ever have. But a few weeks in, things changed. Sales picked up, I had new customers that were always there just waiting for a product that fit their needs, and the passion for my business? Completely renewed. It was like I had become self-employed all over again, with new ideas and the endless drive to create.

Sometimes our lives, especially when it comes to our creative lives, take us on paths that are inevitably hard to follow. But know that it's always worth it.


Ashley
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