Perseverance: How do you define setbacks?

Perseverance is failing 19 times and succeeding the 20th

I don’t spend nearly as much time as I would like making jewelry. I have all these design ideas running through my head, but finding the time to execute them can be challenging. Thankfully on Saturday Sam took Eve for the day and I was able to spend six glorious hours in the metalsmithing studio.

For the first time in a very long time (since before Eve was born, in fact) I didn’t have something pressing to finish. I love doing commissioned work, to work a client and watch her idea come to life, but sometimes I just want to experiment and not feel like I’m racing against the clock to complete a piece.

I had all these little scraps of metal that I was going to turn in to recycle, but I played around with them and came up with some new designs out of them:






(I really adore by little Star of David ring, by the way. This one is for myself, but I’m thinking about about making more and selling them in my Etsy shop.)

Let me tell you, soldering those little rings closed for the bracelets was a massive pain in the ass. If I were home, I probably would have screamed, but there were a lot of people around in the studio and I didn’t want to throw a hissy fit in front of them. But after many several failed attempts, I did it. I didn’t quite fail 19 times, but pretty darn close.

Running a business requires a lot of perseverance with many–so many–setbacks along the way. You apply for a craft show and don’t get in one year, but you apply the following year and get in the next. You e-mail countless shops about carrying your jewelry and you only hear back from a handful, but you get your products out there and you keep on e-mailing. You try a new jewelry technique and keep messing up, but you keep trying it despite how aggravated you are and eventually you have mastered it. You put out a new line of jewelry with a lot of encouragement and excitement but few sales, but you keep pushing on.

I got so much support with my first run of the fitness jewelry for a cause, and it had a lot of promise. I spent a lot of energy marketing it, even paying for some Facebook ads. In the end I only ended up making two sales (at one point I had four, but one turned out to be an accidental purchase and the other was returned). Needless to say, I was disappointed.

But I made two sales. Two! On a rather pricey item, I will admit. And I was able to donate $100 to the One Fund Boston. I might not have met my fundraising goal of $500, but I got 20% of the way there. Does that mean I failed? Only if I allow myself to believe I did.

I learned to adjust my return policies, where to spend my energy marketing and my expectations. I will persevere.

Stay tuned for Friday’s post about the next piece in my line of fitness jewelry for a cause.

What have you persevered through recently?

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