From panic to production
Normally I’d have written and posted before now but I’ve had a surprisingly productive week... that’s not to say other weeks aren’t productive, but I feel like I’ve really outdone myself the past few days.
Those who know me are probably aware by now I’m not overly fond of social interaction. I get anxious around anything new and a lot of the time this has the effect of muffling any joy I’d get from experiencing the new thing. When I do force myself to do the new thing, generally I feel completely exhausted afterwards and recovery takes days, even when I do enjoy it.
Pre self employment, I did a shedload of research into what it all entailed. And each time I felt panic rising I would put it aside until my frazzled brain had taken the information in and felt ready to continue. It took about a year of preparation before I arrived at a place of knowing I knew enough; not everything, but enough to just go for it, close my eyes and do the leap of faith thing.
So far it’s been ok. No actually it’s been good. I’m doing something I love and I’m learning a lot - I love learning about things that interest me! Social media continues to baffle me at times and surprise me other times. SEO although I know the basics is going to be an ongoing learning curve. Judging by the amount of marketing bods that follow me on twitter, SEO is a learning curve for thousands of other people too!
To explain to the non techies, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is basically the thing that gets you found on the internet. You put words in and get eleventy billion results and unless you’re me, you probably don’t go any further than what the first page shows you. Every business wants to be on that first page and as well as having permission to be very smug about it, they’ll get more visitors to their site. Thing is, I’ve done this before and had success with it so I didn’t go into this completely clueless. But that was on a local scale and when you’re competing with the entire world it’s not easy to be found or get noticed and it certainly doesn't happen overnight.
.......... And that’s where things like craft fairs and exhibitions come into play for artists, makers and crafters. Where people can come and see your creations in physical form, pick them up and ask questions ... or even just walk past without so much as a side glance as I have an inner debate about whether to attempt eye contact or hide under the table!
Now going back to what kind of person I am (the whole social interaction avoidance thing), it’s doesn’t require much deduction to conclude that taking part in craft fairs has never been on my list of ‘Things I Want to Do’. So it may come as a surprise (it did to me!) when I put my name forward to have a table at a local craft fair in December. But in June that’s LOADS of months away and panic has at least 3 months before it’ll start to surface!
And that’s where the productive week comes in because I’ve started already. I’ve made 6 miniature trees and one small tree in the last three days; some will be for the fair and some are going into the Masons window next week for a bit of a tree swap around. It would appear I’m making up for lost time with the whole broken finger tip saga! It’s also very therapeutic from beginning to end, creating these adorable tiny trees. By this time next week I'll have made a whole forest!