|Packing up beads to return. It's been on my to-do list for five years!|
What I learned has really stuck with me: there's a huge difference between making money and working hard. Making money involved a lot of things that weren't too fun, but brought in cash: finishing the taxes, filling out rebate forms that had been sitting on my desk for weeks, emailing customers who were months overdue in payments. Many of the things were also scary, such as contacting new customers and asking them to buy large products (something I dread).
I spend a lot of time "working" very hard. I love to scan new images and make new designs. But if those designs and images don't bring in any money, then I end up stressing out at the end of the month when bills are due.
What's great is that this realization has stuck with me. It's helped me "get over myself" to a certain extent and do tasks that are either initially scary or super-boring. Contacting people really isn't as scary as I thought it would be. And by completing tasks that have a definite financial aspect (not selling my soul here; just doing things I know I should be doing anyway) it frees me up to have time to do my business labors of love.
So far the Marie class has totally been worth it. The irony being that the best lesson so far was the one I learned before the class even started: often it's good to put yourself out there. Take a risk. Make a phone call. Do something boring but necessary. Go for something big. It will pay off.