Ah, those greener pastures! We have all dreamed of them at one point or another. Whether you are a rancher or make your living in any other profession known to humankind, there are definitely greener pastures out there for all. So, how do you know when is the right time to move on?
January is usually the time when most of us take stock of what we accomplished in the year that just ended and plan for the year ahead. This is also the month when solid foundations for the move to those greener pastures need to be set. In this post, we will share some of our experiences in evaluating the past and planning for the future, so that you too can be encouraged to plan your move to the proverbial greener pastures. We are hoping to help you avoid the mistakes we made, so that your road may be less winding than ours had been.
Image above: some of the items recently returned from consignment and back in stock at our online shop.
You will know that the time to change directions has come when you get that nagging feeling deep inside that you are not performing to your full potential. But how do you map the road to getting as close to that potential as possible?
First, you need to evaluate what has worked for you in the past and what hasn't. You may be emotionally attached to some of the things that haven't worked, and we won't lie to you saying that letting go will be easy. On the contrary, it may be hard and at times even heart wrenching. You need to take an honest look at all your endeavors and give yourself permission to grieve the ones you have to leave behind, but don't let them hold you back.
In the early years of our jewelry making and selling, before we settled in the heart of the Wild West, we relied fairly heavily on our presence at different art and craft shows. It took us several years of trying to make all the effort directed at participating in such shows pay off for us to realize that was not where our market and our customers were. It was difficult to let go of all the work and money invested in developing those connections, building a perfect show booth, and planning the perfect show inventory. Still, we knew that avenue was not working for us, and continuing in that direction was like beating a dead horse.
Next, once you decide certain endeavor is not producing results, try to find ways to incorporate that experience into your new direction and get rid of the "dead weight" of equipment, supplies, or services you will no longer be needing. You might want to donate some of the equipment to a local non-profit that can make good use of it (just make sure to get a receipt so you can get a tax deduction), sell some of the leftover supplies on eBay, or share them with others you have gotten to know in your field of work. Maybe you can even swap the equipment or supplies you no longer need with someone who has what you will be needing when you take the new direction that you are considering.
Last but not least, you have to make a plan for that new direction. Failure is certain if you don't have a plan. It doesn't have to be an elaborate business plan with every detail clearly spelled out. It can simply be a list of things you want to achieve in the short term and another one for the long term. Just keep in mind that the long term list may (and probably will) change as you progress on your newly chosen path, and don't get discouraged if down the line, some of those changes appear quite significant.
Now that we have, hopefully, encouraged you in your search for those proverbial greener pastures, it is time for us to get back to our own planning. To give you a sneak peek, some of that planning includes cutting ties with one of the gift shops we have been consigning our work with, and slowly launching into the world of wholesaling with some of our simpler designs. Stay tuned for other changes coming to hART Sense Design.
As plans are starting to take shape, here is to a great year ahead for all!
What are some of the action items on your plan for the year ahead? Share in the comments below.
the mind and hands behind hART Sense Design. I am a designer and hand-maker of one-of-a-kind and limited edition jewelry and accessories for artistic, chic cowgirls, boho babes, and lovers of all things western.
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