I hope all is well with you. I have been thinking of you business owners lately (and those of you who are about to open your first business) as two good friends of mine just closed their store only a month ago. Seeing the decor dissipate, left over stock go into storage, and wanderers walk by the window in shock the store is closing, made me want to write to you.
It is a reality when one opens their door to their store for the very first time, that some day, intentionally or not, there will be day that it closes for good.
It is funny how we never really think of that day on the first day of our store opening. I mean, why should we? We worked so friggin hard to get the door opened in the first place, right? I can tell you right now that I was just hoping to get through my first day, much less even thinking of day two, or my last day when I first opened my store.
But it happens. The final click of the lock.
This post isn't meant to depress you newbies or discourage those who are thinking about opening...not at all...just give me a chance and please keep reading.
I took this photo recently...actually, just to check my white balance and ISO....but when I downloaded it recently, I looked at it and thought, what an interesting photo. Not "eye candy," but really interesting. I hadn't really noticed it when I took it. I didn't really stop to look at the stones, only to find focus when I snapped it. These stones happen to be on a pathway but with this photo you can't tell...I was just checking my camera settings. But on my computer screen, late at night, it is really fun to study the stones.
I downloaded this photo around the same time my two friends closed their store, it got me thinking. We are all on a creative path, yet a personal journey. And yes, when one door closes, another opens...we all know this. But there is something more going on out there that needs verbiage, but I am not sure I am the one that can quite vocalize it, but will try.
I will try with stones....
Here, I'm gonna crop the photo and try to express what I am not doing a very good job with at the moment:
Back to my two friends who recently closed their store...they worked very hard, had a great store...did all the "right" stuff...but just not enough traffic in their location or enough customers to keep the store going. And so, they made the decision. Nothing we all haven't heard before. And that is something that business owners face all the time. Very hard. I have written several posts about that topic.
But like I said, on that first day when we open our store, we never think of our last day - when the store will close for good, right? Well, why should we...or should we? Look at the cropped photo above...and then look at the larger photo.
What do you see in the cropped photo?
Hang in there...I'm getting to my point...
Look at the cropped photo again and then back to the larger one. It's not a trick just take a look again at both photos...
Okay....I'm going to make you scroll down so you don't see the answer ahead of time....so scroll dooowwnnnn.....to find out what you should have seen in the photo.....
S T O N E S !
Yup!! Told you it wasn't a trick.
Sometimes, life just has a way of staring at us in the face...but sometimes, it is just a cropped version of the big picture. But guess what? Even cropped, it is still the same pathway too. Opened or closed, in business or not...we are all on our own creative pathway. And you know what else? Our cropped version of the pathway didn't change the direction of the pathway either. Close up versions of life doesn't mean you fall off the pathway, the pathway is always there.
The reason we don't really think about the last day on our first day is like the cropped photo...we deal with what we must deal with in the moment and we can handle only so much....there are only 24 hours in a day and we are human - not super human.
(Did you notice the crabgrass? That is called life getting in the way at times...)
So, if your year isn't starting out the way you planned and you are being hard on yourself, remember, you dealt with what you needed to, and were able to at the time. And wherever you are in this very moment, you are still on your pathway, you haven't fallen off...there are enough stones for everyone to go around!
And if your year is starting out great, and you are getting your brand new store underway...congrats and I wish you much success. Just remember you are on a path with many, many stones...not just one. Don't let slow sales days get you down....those are "cropped photo days." Stepped back and see the big picture and don't panic. :-)
If you ever need to vent, have a worry, or just maybe need a little cheerleading, just email me...
I'm only a stone's throw away... :-)
from my house to your house,