The other night I sat in a coffee shop surrounded by other Colorado Springs creatives. I was nervous to go alone and meet new friends ( but it is one of my goals for 2017. Local Community) plus I already knew two of the girls who would be there so that helped give me the extra push. We got to know each other a bit and then started about email marketing and somehow also what our definition of success is. I stumbled over my words saying really nothing because that is such a hard question for me to process these days.
Success is exciting, something that I want to reach. But it is also kind of scary. What if I set a definition for success and I fail. I never get there. It also teeters so closely to the line of discontentment and comparison. Two of the things that can easily sneak their way into my heart and keep me from thriving – keep me from success.
As I sat down for my quiet times this morning, I wrote “what is success?” in my journal. I then started writing down all my thoughts (writing is so cathartic for me. I find what I am actually feeling through written vomit 😉 ) and what came out from that mess was growth.
Success is GROWTH. It is growing my blog to a place where I could pursue it and invest in it full time. It is each step I take toward my goals and dreams. It is learning new things and incorporating them into my business model. It is growth in my friendships, my family relationships, and my marriage. Success is sinking deeper into grace and letting my heart be transformed to His likeness.
Sometimes that growth – that success- can be measured by numbers, spreadsheets, and math. Other times it can be measured through interactions, engagement, email responses. And other times it is hard to measure anything physical – it is more of a state of mind and a state of heart.
Success is TODAY. It is everything and all the work that has got me here. There is nothing today that is less than. It is a gift and an opportunity. I’ve been given the freedom to blog full time, a platform to share on, an audience who engages, a shared office to work along side my husband, an etsy shop (that people are buying things from!) time to spend with my niece and family, and a drive to continue growing. So much of that is the dream. It is hard work (of course) but it is also the dream.
But Success is also the FUTURE. Just because I can see the blessings and be content with today does not mean I have to be stagnant. Success is making goals, putting in the work, taking more steps forward. I’ve been so hesitant to vocalize goals this year because my business is so personal. I don’t want to fail. I don’t want to disappoint myself. But as I was reflecting on success, spending time with Jesus and the Word, I felt a burden taken off my shoulders. That success could be now and the future. That goals achieved and failed are both different expressions of growth.
(Are you ready for a long post to get even longer? 😉 )
- Create a website that is organized and shows all that I have to offer in a clear and concise way.
- Finally release the e-course I’ve been too afraid to launch.
- Rock my mailing list. It is a mess and I don’t know what to do with it. I need a good kick in the pants to really set this thing up well. I just signed up for List Surge and I am really excited to dive in! Feel free to join me if you want to go through it together!!
- Partner with some shops and brick & mortars on wholesale orders to get our planters in stores!
- Refine and grow Shop Oak + Oats. Add another printer or two to our collection to meet demand.
- Find balance with work and life. Having your life be your work (and visa versa) is HARD sometimes. I want to stop working at normal times and do other things – like read, rest, be free to spend time with people.
- Work out! This one is insane to have on my list if you know me at all. But I really want to take care of my health and my body. I have this underlining definition of working out to just lose wight. Since I don’t care enough to lose weight, I never intentionally worked out. But I realize it isn’t just about being skinny – it is about health. I now have a Pure Barre membership and I really want to make sure to make time for it this year.
- Trust the Lord! How easily it is for me to turn to stress and anxiety. I worry about too many things – some out of my control and somethings in my control – but all things not my burden to bear. I stress about finances, my future, my business, investments, people, my heart. This year I want to focus more on handing things over to the Lord. Trusting him to provide and equip. Owning your own business feels like PILES of responsibility on top of everything else. The Lord brought me here and he will continue to guide me.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight. – Proverbs 3:5&6