My work schedule is set up so that the YouTube video and the blog post are finished at the beginning of the week and after that I work on product development with samples, bags, and workshops. I say that to say that it's Tuesday afternoon as I write this. I'm wrapped in a blanket, curled up on the couch, in front of the fire in my living room, with large fluffy snow flakes falling outside the window. It's beautiful and I'm so grateful to have the option of staying safe at home and enjoying it from the other side of the glass. The older I get, the more I am grateful for the simple things I once rarely considered. I see life much differently.
This week, I have another bag of thread spools to be reamed off and stuffed in glass jars ready to use in some way when I figure out how to recover from my most expensive mistake ever - thread rotting in the sun. I am upset about the loss, some of these spools have been with me for decades, but I'm not angry in an over the edge kind of way. There's no point. I am the one who put the thread in front of the window and I didn't do it on purpose. I had no idea it would rot and snap like that with what I thought was minimal exposure. I was uninformed and wrong. I am grateful for that learning.
I finished the bag I started several weeks ago. I share lots of tips and tricks in today's video on my channel. It didn't go the way I wanted. I had to pivot and shift along the way and I may still do more pivoting because I like it but I don't love it although I love it enough to keep evolving it. As alien as I appear to my younger self, I've come to enjoy that journey of figuring out how to make something that is not working work. Perfect has become boring. It's no longer a quest.
There was a time when I would have been quite hard on myself for being "stupid" enough to put thread in front of a window. Why didn't I know better? I would have been frustrated by the waste of time, money, and energy on a project that was not going the way I thought it should go. I would have felt inadequate because I couldn't do what I wanted to do. I probably would have balled it up and thrown out the parts... good parts... that I now mourn... but we can't go back and redo. We can only go forward. I like that I now see this type of situation as a challenge not a judgement. Instead of berating myself, I'm excited by that stuttering potential as if the universe has created this "mistake" just to take me on another journey.
Last week, I included some affiliate links in my YouTube description and made a favourites page to share the products I use regularly. One person bought the colour tool and I'm happy for them. It's a fabulous tool. Looking at this fifty cents gives me a real thrill in that tickling on the inside kind of way. It won't pay any bills and it's a start. I also had a small amount of money deposited into my account from pattern sales. YES YES - too fun! It shows progress and... ... at the same time, I'm thrilled that I no longer take it as rejection when there isn't an overwhelming response to whatever I put out there. I was so immaturely unrealistic in the past. I didn't know what I didn't know and now I've learned that I can't be all things to all people, that I don't like everyone and not everyone likes me, that it's a marathon not a race, and that my best life is unfolding as it unfolds. And, I've learned to pivot.
Over the three weeks I've been sewing this bag, I've made some decisions to pivot with the business as well. Isn't it interesting what a difference a few days can make? I have decided that there are enough talented bag designers out there already and that another is not needed. Instead of creating patterns to sell, I am shifting my focus to developing two or three different shapes that can be used by the students in my workshops and to developing those workshops. It feels peaceful, like self care, and not like giving up on myself.
I was talking to my accountability partner Monday about how long my to do list for the business was in April when I started and how much it has shrunk and shifted over the year. On a bad day, I could say I've done nothing but change my mind all year and that I haven't really accomplished anything but of course it's not true. It's a good thing there are good days. I started working on class samples last week and I could not believe how much I was enjoying developing a workshop. I was bubbling inside making them. I didn't film them. I didn't photograph them. I sat and made the sample and then wrote up the handout to go with and thoroughly enjoyed how happy my heart was. I pressed them and patted them and stacked them neatly in my workshop basket - the first time I've put together a workshop basket in well over a decade. I think I'd been avoiding how much I missed teaching by pretending I was done, that I never wanted to teach again, and I can't help but notice it's not true. That awareness started in March at the Design Outside the Lines workshop I took in Oregon. The guest teacher was Paula Kovarik and I was 100% determined to be polite and ignore her while focusing on what I was really there for and it went 100% the other way. I had an ah ha about what I was and wasn't doing, what I wanted and what I missed, and I came home to shift my personal life, start the bag business, and head in new directions. It started a year of learning and growing that I'm so grateful for. Along that bag business journey, I'm still pivoting, shifting, fine tuning, and heading in new directions. And this is life. Talk soon - Myrna Grateful - pivoting
PS: I like a lot of things about the Wix blogging format but NOT the comments section. Blogger definitely did that better. If you want to comment on today's post, email me at email@example.com or use the contact form linked above. You'll find it's WAY easier. THANKS.