Going With The Flow
This month’s topic is inspired by what’s been happening in my life these last 6 weeks – C: drive being wiped out, flat hunting for a flat that allows a cat (surprisingly difficult!), packing and moving home, a flooding washing machine, a friend being amazingly supportive lending me his car during all this time, doing extra markets to keep the income coming in when SO much money is going out the door and rebuilding a much needed PC (plus the other small but challenging little things going astray like hiding software).
So the moral of this story is hold on tightly, let go lightly.
Be organised and prepared for times of change or busy times you know are coming because Murphy’s Law will strike and other things will happen.
Christmas is my busiest time of year and an important personal anniversary. I thought I was being organised with it but then I received notice about my flat of 5 years as the owner was moving back to Sydney to live in it. The exit date was set for the first weekend in December. Well from there everything just sped up. It was the worst time of year for me to move – rental prices in the area at their height, busiest business time with me needing to be working on creating stock and fulfilling orders and doing extra markets.
I thought I was organised but in hind-sight I wasn’t organised enough. I think I’ve been quite good with the letting go lightly part and surrendering to Mr Murphy and his Law because I’m really not too stressed about things. Yes, this has all negatively impacted my income at my most prosperous time of year but I can still put food on the table and pay the rent. I may not have as much time off as I like or need but I’ll sort that out and make sure all is well. It is the attitude that is the key I’m learning.
I’m hoping my personal story with all of this helps show how life just happens, it goes on with or without you and how you cope with it is purely your choice.
If it was put to me that I needed to move I would have suggested March/April but it was deemed otherwise. The upside is I’m in a much nicer apartment, my cat has a balcony she loves (out there in her cat quilt as I write) and I’m getting use to the night noises (or rather lack of them) and getting better sleep.
My biggest business concern during all of this has been my eBay customers, especially the ones winning auctions that finished after my computer died. It took me way too long to realise I could simply go into an internet cafe and log onto eBay and contact them and keep communication happening and the process happening. I figured it out only last week and the orders are now out and I’ll hopefully have happy customers. Fortunately for me they have all been very understanding and accepting of technical gremlins.
So may I suggest some solutions for busy times that become more complicated than anticipated?
* Take time out to consider what are the consequences of things. Use logical thinking to consider options and solutions.
* Write this out in a list with possible solutions/actions and time required.
* Revise this list as you go along.
* Know where things are – where your software is, computer cables, printers and the like. Know what is key for your business and what priority it is. I knew my markets had to keep going so I was organised for that. I didn’t know my computer was going to crash so I wasn’t ready for that. Now I’ve created a bag of software with notes so it can be rebuilt more quickly.
* Don’t stress about solutions or changes, talk to friends about the questions going through your mind and you’ll be delighted by the simple solutions they come up with.
* Trust your customers and friends to understand that Murphy’s Law does strike and communicate with them. If you are a one-woman band then you don’t have a large corporate infrastructure to back you up, you just have you and people understand that and support you, so let them. Communicate with them.
So there you go, the last SeaChange article for 2004 and it is all about the challenges of living the Sea Change, but that’s alright, it is how life goes and I wouldn’t want to be back in my old world, even if it did have many more safety nets!