you have my word

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

{photo credit}

i'm not the type of person to make new years resolutions. the whole concept doesn't work all that well for me. in years past, i have found myself furiously composing a (longish) list of all the things i wanted to change about myself and then come january 1st attacking the list trying to change everything at once. 

talk about an exhausting way to set yourself up for failure. i don't know about you, but i have a lot of flaws and one enthusiastic week in early january is not going to change them. however, this year i wanted to give "new years resolutions" a chance. instead of making a list, my approach was to pick one word to focus on. this would give me 365 opportunities to take chances and work towards my overarching goal.

i spent only a little time thinking about my word. "brave".

being brave is not something i do very often. i'm not a total introvert or hermit, but after taking a little inventory of my life, i found these were the current ways that i am "brave": i like to try new foods. i like to meet new people (most of the time). you want me to check out a new band you just discovered? all over that. i'm not scared to fly. i take zumba on occasion. if coerced, i will probably go see the new tyler perry movie with you. just kidding. i would never do that.

wow. you can clearly see the leaps and bounds i need to make in this area in my life. is "trying new foods" even bravery? i think it's just called being a normal person.

i realized that i needed to take bigger chances and do things that would scare me a little. as everyone and their mom has probably read on pinterest "if it scares you, it might be a good thing to try." this resounded with me as i thought about several areas of my life that i knew needed improvement but had not done much to change. what was i afraid of? hard work? trying and failing? actually being successful?

one of those areas was my creative ventures. i have been toying with the idea of applying to a craft market for a while now. i always enjoy going to these types of events as a customer. the wide array of vendors and craft products are always exciting and inspiring. i look at all of the artists selling their great wares and think i could do that! but, unfortunately, that's usually where my thought process stopped.

this time was different. almost as soon as i started seriously considering applying, i found two different craft markets that were accepting applications. i took a deep breath and started working on getting a bio together, pictures of my work, a description of what inspires me, a list of my materials, and my process in creating. i paid my application fees, submitted my applications and then waited.

several weeks after each submission, i got my responses. i had not been chosen. from either. the rejection emails were very polite and diplomatic. something along the lines of "it was a very hard decision to make...we had many qualified have great talent...but..."

something along the lines of a breakup speech.

you know the feeling of major disappointment? the feeling of getting picked last for dodgeball? the feeling of being left off the guest list to a friend's party? this was not any of those things. this was a little sad, yes, but a lot of satisfaction. a lot of happiness.

my satisfaction came from trying. my satisfaction came from taking a chance and not being scared to do something new. it came from being brave. to me, that's how i want to live this year. taking chances, being brave, being bold in what i say and do and how i treat others. not every opportunity will work out. (clearly). but opportunities working out is not the measure of success. the measure of success is seeing something that scares you and not running away from it.

i ended up volunteering at both of the craft markets that didn't accept me as a vendor, and it was a blast! i met some great people and worked alongside other women who shared my interest in arts and crafts. i took note of how the artists set up their tables and what kind of goods they had for sale. i bought a few items from the artists and noticed how they took sales and packaged up the items. i am filing this information away for future reference when i apply again to a craft fair and get accepted. because, believe me, it's going to happen.

in a weird, backwards way i am actually glad i didn't get into either of those craft fairs. while it would have been great to set up my own booth, there is perhaps even a greater lesson i needed to learn in this. sometimes even when you try, you won't make it. you'll actually fail, but that's ok. the things in life that don't come easily are appreciated even more when they do happen.

so, can everyone raise their coffee mug and toast with me? here's to a year of being brave. cheers!

(a post and fun pictures about the craft markets soon to come!)


  1. I think it's great that you are applying to trying to do craft shows. I'm looking into doing a few in the fall based on how things go with my online boutique that I've opened. *fingers crossed*

    Bravery is definitely a tricky thing - I commend you!

    So what are you making??? Have you opened an online boutique??

    1. yes! i think this should be a goal for both of us. i've seen your sewn items and they are really quality (and cute!) it takes a lot of guts to be brave. i'm learning this with each new adventure. i do have an online shop! find my etsy link on the sidebar of my blog, and it will take you to my page. :-)

  2. what a great word and great way to live.He is our Defender so why not be brave, its a shoe-in!!!!! fantastic to he hearing from my favorite blogger again!


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