If I had to name one thing that was important to me...
...just ONE thing...
I would respond to you with a single word:
Independence is at the core of my ambitions, the goal illustrated by my dreams, and the results I am attempting to manifest through my daily actions.
My pursuit of independence is the spark that lights up my jewelry business.
Yes, I love making the beaded jewelry you'll find on this website, and designing original creations that will help wonderful people from all over the world feel more confident and express themselves and their originality. But that's all part of my internal drive for self-reliance and freedom.
I have witnessed and lived through a lack of independence and it is terrifying.
It's why my mother couldn't leave a spouse that sent her to the hospital with the blows of his fists, or, later, couldn't relieve herself from the bottle that took her life away when I was 16 years old.
It's why so many of the people I care about stay with family or partners who mistreat them, addictions that destroy them, jobs that demoralize them, habitats that bore them, and obligations that gradually wear them down into passive submission.
To be perfectly clear: I love my husband, love my day job, love my house, town, and friends and family. I'm not looking for an escape. I just want to breathe easier knowing I would never have to live my life feeling entrapped in something that isn't serving me or allowing me to serve others to the best of my ability.
To do this, I need to take my jewelry business to the next level.
Right now I am making and selling handmade pieces that I design, market, and sell individually. I love every part of this process, and even enjoy all of the different hats I have to don, but it isn't scalable in the way that is required to obtain the level of flexibility I'm looking for.
I need to take my business to the next level.
My goal for this year, if I can put the pieces together and create a map for it, is to design original pieces that are partly manufactured, and partly hand-beaded. As a new line, it would represent both of my skill-sets in one: digital design, and artisan beadwork. If this is something I can pull off, it would be a more sustainable and scalable way of moving my business forward, where I can then reach for my ultimate dreams.
My desire for this business is to use it as a catalyst to not only gain my own independence, but to supply a tool for women locally and nationally to achieve theirs. I'm not sure of the exact specs of how I would go about this–yet–but I want to partner with non-profit organizations assisting women trying to take charge of their lives and remove themselves from domestic violence or uncomfortable workplace situations. I will use this business as a means to provide employment for these women, teach the principals of entrepreneurship, and spread awareness of what is still too prevalent of a problem in 2015.
As part of my path towards accomplishing these goals and desires—to reach independence and turn it into something infectious to others—I am applying for a spot in Flourish and Thrive Academy's Laying the Foundation course.
I have taken other courses from Tracy and Robin and Flourish and Thrive Academy and can attest to the value and support they provide. I feel I am close—so close—to getting where I want to be. This course will help me refine my jewelry collections, figure out how to even get started with manufacturing and digital design, and provide me with valuable feedback and support along the way.
(You can learn more about this course and the scholarship contest here: www.flourishthriveacademy.com/2015/01/16/win-scholarship-ftas-laying-foundation-course-2015/)
This course would provide another step—a big step–towards achieving