You see, about this time a year ago, my Sweet P’s shop was growing a teeny bit and I was having fun sewing random little things for the Pickle. So when an advertisement fluttered across my Facebook news feed about a small craft fair, it caught my eye.
The very first thing that drew me in was the organization: A Secret Safe Place for Newborns of Tennessee. This organization is amazing, as they promote and advertise Tennessee’s Safe Haven law, which protects pregnant women who cannot keep their children, but also don’t want to abort them. Too many women feel they have no place to go during unexpected pregnancies and all too often we hear sad news stories of babies found in dumpsters, bathrooms, or worse. This organization helps get the word out that there is a better option available that is completely safe, completely anonymous, and is in the absolute best interest of the baby and frightened mother. I was all over this organization!
The second thing that drew me in was the simplicity of a one-day (evening, actually), low-fee craft fair.
And then the doubts came… Did I have a marketable product? Was I a good enough seamstress/artist/creator? Would anything sell? Would it be a waste of my time? Did I have what it takes to take this step in my very very very small business? Would it be worth it, or would I completely embarrass myself?
I almost moved on down the feed and forgot about it. But something kept drawing me back. The idea was there, and I couldn’t shake it. The only question remained: Was I brave enough?
I mean, I didn’t have a sewing room. I used our kitchen table after the Pickle went to bed. My craft stuff usually ended up all over the (very small) house. Most of my ideas were quickly executed using whatever I had lying around… and seldom perfected. Only a handful of people even knew I had a shop, let alone had anything worth paying money for. Did I dare?
Finally, after weighing the costs the best I could, I printed out the form.
I played a number of rationalization games with myself. If I just break even, it will be ok. At least it is for a good cause. I can always give away everything I don’t sell as Christmas gifts.
But deep down inside, I was excited and terrified all at the same time. And I just
to do it.
So I did.
And you know what… it wasn’t awful. I didn’t sell out or anything. I probably broke even. I got some great advice. Met some wonderful people. I learned a few things along the way.
But the most important lessons had nothing to do with crafting or putting myself ‘out there.’
No, I learned to be confident in myself and my work.
I learned to take steps forward even if their success was not guaranteed. Just taking the steps was a success, really!
And I learned that sometimes you just have to dive into things in order to grow, learn from your mistakes, and stretch your abilities! I became a better seamstress in the month and a half leading up to that craft fair than I had in my entire first year of sewing.
So what are you waiting for? What is holding you back from trying something new, or pursuing a dream, or saying yes?
The worst thing that can happen is that you will fail… and learn. And grow. And move on. And try again.
The best thing that can happen is you will inspire others to do the same…
and that will make all the difference.