Reality Check

Reality Check

Creating this small shop was one of the best things I have ever done, but it has undeniably been one of the hardest, too. I wanted to share some of the not-so-thrilling sides of owning a small business that people don't share. In the beginning, I felt so alone at times watching other small businesses succeed while I felt stuck in the passenger seat. I hope sharing these raw feelings help you feel less alone in your journey. 

Warning, this one gets raw.

When I started my shop, I was what I call "blind eager beaver". I took everysingle. opportunity. Good or bad, it didn't matter. I wanted this dream and vision of mine to be successful. We wanted our hard work to pay off instantly (and yes, we are a bit impatient). We took chances on things that failed, horribly. We trusted people and started friendships instantly, when we maybe should have taken a second look. It's hard being the new kid on the block - okay?! And boy, oh boy, have we fell flat on our faces many, many times. We got hurt, we cried, we made mistakes, but we dusted ourselves off and kept moving forward. Nothing could take this away from us. 

An odd confession - confidence was never something I thought I lacked until I started pursuing my online business, isn't that a bit poetic? Start a business, lose confidence. I still can't quite figure that one out. Maybe it has to do with showing my heart and soul to thousands of strangers whom I will never meet? Sharing my home? My family? My husband? I am not going to lie to you, having such a public platform on the big scary internet is terrifying sometimes, and people are brave behind that keyboard. We have second guessed so many things - Do I share this? Should I share my life more or less? What should I do differently? How should I be successful? I had to learn to be okay with what strangers said about you on the internet - what they say about you doesn't mean it's true, and I will leave it at that. Remember that.

To pile on to lessons we learned, we also had to learn how to have a bad sale. No, but really. There were sales where we only had one purchase from three hours of selling, for twenty-five dollars. Talk about a gut punch. Did I have bad taste? Constant questioning of status-quo, endless brainstorming, and persistence led me through some of my darkest times with Maetiques. They don’t tell you that you will have “dark times” when chasing your dreams, do they? We kept battling new feelings and pressing forward, I assume that is what they call "growth". 

I knew from the beginning that if I was going to start this business and make it successful, sacrifices would need to be made. We only ever have 24 hours on any given day, and Maetiques was taking up quite a large portion of my time. I didn’t know how to fit it all in. A full-time demanding commute job, wife, daughter, sister, friend, and now a business owner. How in the WORLD am I going to do it all? I began to feel like a failure... There was a month period where I felt numb. Numb to it all. I couldn't win for losing. I was stuck in a cycle of trying to do my absolute best, grow my business, and maintain the same style of living. It simply isn't possible, we had to adjust. We had to make time for US. Sacrifices will be made, and your life WILL change when you chase a dream, no matter what that dream is. We don't have as many date nights, and we don't hang out with our friends and family as much as we'd like to, and we are hyper aware that every single moment is precious to us. Going into this new phase of growth was awakening - it was understanding how to compartmentalize and "be where your feet are" and budgeting self-focus time into each and every day. You are not a superhero, you cannot do it ALL at 100%, 100% of the time. We learned to rest, let go, and become true to ourselves first. 

The fulfillment Maetiques gives us is worth it all, our hearts grow over ten-fold when we get an order, engage with a customer, hear your stories, deliver good news, source an item I know you will love, hit milestones... The list goes on. Being the owner and curator for Maetiques gives me more pride and love than I have ever experienced. Getting to chase this dream with my husband by my side has built strength and resiliency to our relationship. Our marriage is the best it has ever been! Working together as partners on this venture has created so many opportunities to share raw feelings and become closer as a couple and best friends. Connecting with my customers has created a new spot in my heart that is so warm and tender. Creating and designing every day has given me meaning. I wouldn't change a thing about this journey (even the bad stuff) because it has taught me more about myself and life than anything else has. Time, ambition, dedication, and love. 

If you don't sacrifice for what you want, what you want becomes the sacrifice. Keep chasing your dreams. YOU deserve it. You deserve to direct your life and make your dreams a reality! Will it be hard work? Yes. Is it worth it? Also, yes.  

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