Thursday, April 19, 2012

Navigating Change for Makers Part IV - it's not a time to go historic, it's a time to have faith in ourselves

As a maker with a maker business

(or a wannabe maker business - which is an exciting, and yes, sometimes scary, place to be, too)

at a time of immense change when we do not know what to do next - when life is cracking us wide open and up is down and down is up -

it is often the time to be still and listen (ie hear and pay attention).

We hope the answers will come to us quickly - and sometimes they do - but often life wants us to have this empty space.
It's not a time to panic -
it's a time to stop.

(and sometimes the problem isn't that we don't know when to stop, but that we don't know how to get unstopped - and sometimes when we just can't get clear on where we are going it is because we are already exactly where we are supposed to be and we just haven't made full use of it yet)

Prayer and affirmations are a great way to ask for what we need, but meditation is really the best way to listen.

This listening part can take awhile.

Sometimes we have to let pieces of our life (and other people's lives - we are all connected after all) shift to allow what needs to happen to happen. We have to trust that there are lots of things going on behind the scenes - we have to have faith.

This can be the hardest part for people who like to take action. But our fallow times are there for a reason - the universe can't send us stuff - ideas, people, connections, etc - if we haven't made room in our life for it.

Fallow times can bring up alot of fear.

(Asking ourselves - is there any excitement in this fear? because there almost always is - is a good idea. We are designed to move through fear - we were not designed to play it safe)

Fear is faced with courage which means speaking one's mind by speaking one's heart. We always have to do what works for us.

(and sometimes we find out what works for us by finding out what doesn't work)

A few years ago

(after 9/11 but before the Iraq War)

I trademarked the words Homeland Security Blanket - I made a few sample blankets with the tagline "don't forget to tuck and cover".

Then the Iraq War started and almost over night this entire concept that I had put so much time and energy into just didn't work for me anymore. There were still plenty of people who would have bought my blankets, but it just wasn't in my heart to make money with them.

If I had stayed with this - I'm sure I would have made money, maybe as much money as I have made with Olive Bites, maybe more,

but I would not have made the life I have now. I let it go trusting that something better and more authentically me was waiting.

When I first started my new lines I had absolutely no idea I would be making a living with cork and car parts. I had decided to go back to school and was looking to make enough money to pay for that. I had no idea where following my heart would lead (and of course I still don't).

"This doesn't work for me" is a higher reason to not do something than "this isn't going to pay my bills".

I would not have thought I could pay my bills with my jewelry and believe me I did enough craft shows pre-Etsy with poor sales that it was only the knowledge that I knew I was speaking my heart and would find my place that kept me moving forward.

Sometimes people give up too soon and decide - "this isn't going to pay my bills" - and maybe it won't, because many things don't - but it could evolve into something or lead us to something or take us somewhere that will.

This is a time in our planet's history when we are being asked to give things up (or life is prying those things from our fingers - which is why I do not worry about broken nails anymore) - it is time to let go of what isn't working because we are meant to have so much more.

And this "more" isn't always something external because life is big and messy and complicated (and small and neat and simple - isn't that amazing!).

Sometimes the desire to create a business is more about what that "desire" does for us inside than about the thing we are trying to produce which may or may not make us money now. Maybe the desire is preparing us for something else later.

1. Give Something(s) Away (Part II)
2. Make Something (Part III)
3. Listen
4. Then Choose Wholeheartedly

As always I will wrap up this series with the disclaimer that following any advice on my blog could result in you ending up living in your parents' basement and addicted to Angry Birds, so proceed at your own risk

(unless of course this would be an improvement over your current living situation in which case I will take full credit for your success).

* released print by oreilly ink

3 comments:

Julie Boyles said...

"at a time of immense change when we do not know what to do next - when life is cracking us wide open and up is down and down is up -

it is often the time to be still and listen (ie hear and pay attention)."

Have you been peeping in my windows this week?

You're speaking to my heart with this series, Cat. Thank you for writing these thoughts down!

DancingMooney ♥ said...

I need to catch up with this series next week Cat, I just love your way of putting thoughts into words, I really get you. :)

Love this... connected with it dearly...

"when we just can't get clear on where we are going it is because we are already exactly where we are supposed to be and we just haven't made full use of it yet"..

however that would have been how I was feeling last week. Today, motivated, excited, feeling newly inspired, moving forward.

but first, a mini vacation. ♥
xo!

Catherine Ivins said...

Thank you Julie- I really believe that many of us have been brought together in such unusual ways to be with each other through these times - this must be what it has always felt like for people when one age moved into another ...

Thanks as always Janell - we think alike -ooh a mini vacation I like the sound of that! xo