Don't Let Fear Stop You
For many years I had the yearning to start my own business, and as a stationery designer I thought the best way to start was by establishing my own invitation design studio.
In this industry there are various ways to showcase and sell your work, one of the most recognized avenues being Etsy, but I never had the inclination to dive into it because I didn’t feel it was a match for my invitations. Plus, there were a few people in the industry who recommended staying away from it based on their experience of dealing with a platform they didn’t have full control over, compared to their own website.
With help from lessons I’ve learned through marketing and business courses, I realized I had to try it out for myself—I couldn’t rely simply on other people’s word for reasons NOT to join the Etsy community. I had to experience the process, the highs and lows that came with it and then make the decision for whether it was smart to stay or not. So in June of 2015 I opened my first Etsy shop, almost ten years after the initial idea of starting a business entered my mind.
Why wait so long? you may ask. Well, I understand now it was due to fear. Fear of not being successful in that marketplace. Fear of not having any sales. Fear of giving my business an identity I did not want to associate with it—DIY? NO! So, I left the idea of opening an Etsy shop behind, even after so many people repeatedly told me to jump in.
A year in I now understand it is a completely different market than the one I want to target, but I’ve also learned some strong lessons. The main one being that it is important to have a virtual space you can control—meaning your own website for your product or service—but, most important, that you have to dance with fear and take the apparent risks associated with any new venture. As scary as the situation may seem you will never know what the outcome may be if you don’t attempt it.
While things were still being organized in Lizzy B Loves world, I knew I needed my ‘own’ online home for the business, so during this last year I’ve been building out the new Lizzy B Loves website, which is finally live after a soft launch this past Friday!
There is a lot of planning and creating that goes into establishing an online presence, whether it be an Etsy shop or independent website, and it’s important to look at the small details not as nit-picky/wanting to leave them in perfection, but with contentment and satisfaction—knowing that all that is necessary in that moment is perfect.
With much love and gratitude,