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If you’re following the podcast, you already know I closed 2 of my retail stores after the first of the year. These two stores were connected totaling 12,500 sq ft of retail space. I had two different business models with 3 LLC’s inside. The interior design firm, the vendor mall, and my own retail showroom were a massive undertaking. It broke my heart to close (and a depression set-in), but the rent was raised to a rate that was unaffordable to the businesses. I would have been starting each month in the red and I knew we wouldn’t survive. I decided to focus on my new smaller store, closer to home, while I looked for another location. Oh, did I mention I was planning a wedding FOR MYSELF this entire time. Yep, add that to the long list. Well, after a difficult winter and spring closing the big store, my smaller store was hit by lighting and I lost everything due to smoke damage. I was devastated. I went from a huge career in retail and design to what seemed like almost nothing.
After spending April and May working on the cleanup from the fire and the insurance claim, I had a lot of anxiety about what I would do next. After doing so much professionally, I felt like I had been stripped down to almost nothing. I knew the direction I was ready to go (blogging, podcasting, and traveling for merchandise) and with my crazy entrepreneur drive I was beginning to dive right in. I started posting, working on the blog, and collecting fun treasures to sell. I began gaining internet traction and it was a lot of fun. No rest for me!!! Did I mention I didn’t know I was in burnout? It took me to completely pause and take some time off to realize what I was doing to myself.
Recognizing I needed time to relax was very hard for me. I had a business mindset on one shoulder pushing me to jump back in and on the other was the draw to rest. I slowly, and I mean slowly began to let myself relax a little. I had previously been getting up at 7:00 am (during the summer, 5:00 am during the school year) to get in 2 hours of work before the kids woke up. I tried hard to not feel guilty about taking them to the pool or cleaning out a cabinet at the house. I found a fitness trainer and began circuit training 3 days a week. I focused on the kitchen and what my family was eating. I was loving the easier summer pace and the more I relaxed the more fun I began to have. It was like a lightbulb went off and I realized all that hard work I was doing, I was missing all this. I knew its what I wanted, but with all I had on my plate there would never be any time for fun.