As you all have probably realized, things have been really busy here for us lately. It seems that the business is growing and that is a great thing for us – especially considering the way the economy is these days. We are really happy and feel so fortunate that things are working out, and we also realize that there is much to do ahead that is both fun and exciting.
Finishing the latest wholesale order was yet another big milestone. Even though I had help with it, I was beginning to feel some of the pressure that accompanies this level of success. I don’t think that it is that I am afraid to work, but it seemed to be more of making the right decisions as to where it is best to put my time. With the large order coming in even before I was able to complete the previous order, it rather threw me for a loop. I didn’t get a chance to take a breath and evaluate things and needed to jump right back in again. That was a bit unnerving.
The latest order went out yesterday and now there are two in transit. I spent the early part of yesterday deep cleaning the place and organizing everything. This included filing papers, breaking down unused boxes and discarding them (there will always be more available from our grocery store when I need them) and even organizing things on my computer. I can’t even begin to tell you how good it felt to get that done.
I sometimes get teased because of our emphasis on being organized. But the last week or so showed me what an important part of being successful keeping things in order can be. We are in a small place here and it really doesn’t take much to make it look cluttered and messy. When we are in a hurry with things and don’t put them where they belong, it is very easy to be frustrated and waste time trying to locate them. At least for me.
While some people thrive in busy and cluttered areas, I find that I do not. I don’t concentrate well when things are messy and out of place and I don’t feel that I do as good of a job. I realize that everyone is different and I maintain the attitude that we all need to do what is best for us and our own well being, but for myself, I need things neat.
Around lunch time yesterday, when things were all done, I sat down and looked around and I could actually “feel” a sense of calm come over me. The anxiousness from the previous days drained away, as if someone pulled a plug on a sink full of water, and I felt at peace. I was then able to dive into the next project and make some real designing progress for the first time in a couple of weeks. And I am excited about the new things that are developing!
Besides the physical organization that I did yesterday, I also did some mental organization as well. Part of what has been bothering me the past couple of weeks was being torn between the scroll sawing part of my work and the painting part of my work. Both are showing signs of success and both need attention in order to grow. I needed to come up with a realistic way to be able to attend to both parts or I would have to choose between them – something that I don’t want to do.
So what I decided to do was this . . .
I am going to be working on the scroll saw aspect of my job during the day hours, and after dinner I would be able to devote time to my painting. (At least in the designing aspect of both)
It sounds simple enough, and in theory it should at least be a starting point for me. Until now, there has been no defined time lines for doing either and I seem that I have been flopping around between the two with no clear direction or rhyme or reason. I needed to define my goals a bit better in order to focus on them better and this will certainly help me in that direction.
There will be no hard and fast rules for this, as times will surely come when I will deviate from this time table, but at least I have a starting guide line set up for myself and that will eliminate the tug of war I am having with myself right now as to ‘what to do first.’ Of course, the wholesale orders will take precedence and be the first priority, and deadlines will also get heavier consideration, but using this time table as a loose guideline will help me set the pace and I will not be wandering aimlessly in my thoughts as to what to work on next.
Already by just defining the plan I settled in and actually got some good designing work done yesterday. I worked on new scroll saw patterns all afternoon, knowing that I would have time in the evening to work on new painting patterns. It cleared my conscience and I found I was more productive than I have been in days.
So for now I will be doing some ‘double duty’ as a designer.
Scroll saw pattern designer by day and painting pattern designer by night. We can all see together how this will work out for me and if it will keep me on track.
I am hoping for the best. :)
Have a great day!
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"