Secrets to Success: Rule #1

It’s not always easy to start a business, build a blog readership, or quit your desk job to pursue your hand sewn line of women’s clothing full-time. In fact, it’s almost always quite challenging at times. So, if you’re up for it, I’m starting a series that tells it like it is…the good, the bad, and the completely ‘Girl, I can’t believe you went there.” Secrets to success that have been learned along the way…

Do you ever end your day feeling like you couldn’t possibly do ________ , whatever _____ may be (reach 10,000 followers, get paid for your writing, reach 2,000 sales by the end of your first year in business, quit your desk job to pursue your passion, etc)?

I’m here to tell you that I’ve been there too. And one thing I’ve learned is this..if you simply give it a try anyway, sometimes you’ll surprise yourself. You might just realize that you actually can do that thing that you didn’t think was possible. BUT there’s a catch: it will take time, some trial and error, and a whole lot of drive.

I’ll be completely honest with you – I don’t always know what the next ‘right’ step is and there is a lot of ‘making it up as I go’. But you know what? I’m willing to bet that a fair portion of your favorite bloggers are exactly the same way. We just decide we want something and go after it, whether we know exactly how we are going to get there or not.

Over the last four and half years that I’ve been running papernstitch, I’ve spoken with a whole lot of successful bloggers and business owners through email and skype and in person and on the phone. And I can promise you that this is true for a heck of a lot of people.

So what happens when your favorite blogger or the shop owner you most admire doesn’t know what to do next or where to go from here? They hop on the phone or shoot out an email to their peers, who may be able to help. And if that doesn’t result in an answer, those colleagues and friends recommend someone else to try or a podcast to listen to. And if that doesn’t help, the tinkering and troubleshooting, and ‘making it up as we go’ comes into play. Those successful ladies that you dream of one day being, work their butts off until they figure it out. Whatever it takes.

And that drive and motivation to keep going, not knowing what’s on the other side, is what will separate the success stories from those that throw up their hands, toss in the towel, and never find out what they could have been.

Secrets to Success Rule #1:

Move beyond the fear of failure and give it your best shot, with all that you have to give. You might not win the game, but one thing is certain: You’ll never win the game that you don’t play.

Nothing could be worse than the fear that one had given up too soon, and left one unexpended effort that might have saved the world.“ -Jane Addams

Will you challenge yourself to give it all that you have to give?

image: I can’t do this but…

53 comments | Click here to reply

Thank you for your very personal and honest post! I’m doing my best, but I think I’m very far from quiting my day job.
Kristina recently posted..See you at ARTish?

Kristina

Keep at it Kristina. Baby steps still get you places in time. 🙂
-Brittni

papernstitch

RT @papernstitch: Secrets to Success: Rule #1: It’s not always easy to start a business, build a blog… http://t.co/46pkcXXd

Amy Connolly (@CSSpectrum)

Love the post and LOVE the photo too. Such great style…

Haven’t we ALL thought about giving up? Especially now when the bloggy market is soooo saturated. Does the world NEED another blog? Well, it needs you and it needs me and that person over there too. Our own unique take on things.

Hanging in there. Sometimes inspired, sometimes discouraged but hanging in there.

Looking forward to the rest of the series!
Sandra recently posted..The evolution of a blog

Sandra

Don’t forget about me, Sandra. It needs me too. ME TOO! 🙂

Brittni, this column is going to be awesome. I love this post and can’t wait for the next one. xo
Melanie recently posted..Charity: Water for Camp Mighty

Melanie

Thank you for this honest post. It is true, it is hard sometimes to keep going but it will all be worth it in the end. Blogging is a sort of therapy for me and I dont know what I would do without it!!
McKenna Ryan recently posted..Thankful for Giveaways!!!

McKenna Ryan

Really great post… I think there’s a moment when it gets just tough enough to give up or push through and see what’s waiting for you. Sometimes its the situation and sometimes its ourselves. Looking forward to reading this series and to keep “pushing through”. Saving those quotes at the end and pinning them on my inspiration board!
Ryan recently posted..Remnants of the Past Expo Weekend

Ryan

“You’ll never win the game that you don’t play” – I needed this post today RT @papernstitch http://t.co/Ch3YOjWS

(@sheri_silver) (@sheri_silver)

Love this, Brittni. I agree, this is going to be one awesome column. Thanks for being so honest, and for the inspiration to give it all we’ve got 🙂

Audrey - This Little Street

Thanks for all the love in the comments ladies. You all are amazing!
-Brittni

papernstitch

You can never win the game if you don’t play — Secrets to Success: Rule #1 http://t.co/aj5FtVOQ via @sharethis

Tressa Campbell (@thestitcherati)

Great post and your timing is impeccable! I’m preparing my “second act” — this is awesome. Looking forward to more posts in the series.
Tressa recently posted..DIY Stenciled Gothic Raven Mug

Tressa

I love this post from @papernstitch about perseverance. And the photo sums up everything. http://t.co/FkwH2soD

(@abbyglassenberg) (@abbyglassenberg)

This is exactly what I needed to read today! Thank you.

Karyn

RT @papernstitch: Secrets to Success: Rule #1: It’s not always easy to start a business, build a blog… http://t.co/0qGewbgd

(@CreateHype) (@CreateHype)

This really speaks to me. I always wanted a blog … forever and ever, but was scared to take the leap. I finally decided, why not jump and go for it? I have nothing to lose.

In terms of blogging, I have good days and not so good days, triumphs and insecurities, but I’m learning a lot and have made so many great bloggy friends and I can’t wait to see where this journey leads. Thanks so much for the inspiration and nudge to keep on the path…

Erica

I love this post, and needed to hear it after a day of playing for hours trying to get images on my menu buttons. It’s always the little things that seem to make me question all the big things. I can’t wait to hear more, thanks for the much needed pick me up.
Carson recently posted..Organization: Weekly Planner Pages

Carson

Very thoughtful. RT Secrets to Success: Rule #1 http://t.co/LxdNHTg9 via @sharethis

Ninoushka (@littlendotnet)

loved your post! i would say, that you have to stick with it….sometimes, it has taken me 3-4 times before i get something and it actually clicks and then it may work. drive and persistence is key- thanks for your post!
kristin recently posted..how my garden is still growing- a painting

kristin

I thank you for this post. Humbling honesty and inspiration. I believe what you’re saying though. Just need to keep pushing forward. I look forward to some more tips.
=)
x
aspiring blogger
http://www.misscocolima.com

miss coco lima

Give It Your Best Shot…paper n stitch’s Secrets to Success http://t.co/qlYdTwU2

Karyn (@den10studio)

Words of encouragement for artists & bloggers who want to quit their day job, but can’t just yet 🙂 via @papernstitch http://t.co/qvJcapqJ

alignbetween (@alignbetween)

Loving this from Paper and Stitch. Secrets to Success: Rule #1 http://t.co/xikq9gSg via @sharethis @papernstitch

Creating Space (@creatingspacesf)

Thanks Brittni, I was having a moment over here! 🙂 Still overwhelmed and not feeling good enough, but I’ve made some small changes. I’m hoping those small changes will add up over time

Melissa Lund

RT @alignbetween: Words of encouragement for artists & bloggers who want to quit their day job, but can’t just yet 🙂 via @papernstitch http://t.co/qvJcapqJ

BRIKA (@ShopBrika)

RT @alignbetween: Words of encouragement for artists & bloggers who want to quit their day job, but can’t just yet 🙂 via @papernstitch http://t.co/qvJcapqJ

(@kdmarsden) (@kdmarsden)

RT @alignbetween: Words of encouragement for artists & bloggers who want to quit their day job, but can’t just yet 🙂 via @papernstitch http://t.co/qvJcapqJ

the vintage bazaar (@vintagebazaar)

You are in my head! RT @papernstitch Secrets to Success Rule #1: It’s not always easy to start a business, build a blog http://t.co/xnTYHpZj

Kathryn Stevens (@atlasandelia)

Brittni, This feels exactly like what I’m going through…it’s like you’re in my head right now! It feels good to know that there are others who are going through/have gone through what you are… Thank you for sharing!!

Kathryn Denelle Stevens

I needed to hear this yesterday. Just keep on keepin’ on!
Secrets to Success: Rule #1 | papernstitch http://t.co/nwdOgNms

Carson Riutta (@bluebuttonpress)

RT @alignbetween: Words of encouragement for artists & bloggers who want to quit their day job, but can’t just yet 🙂 via @papernstitch http://t.co/qvJcapqJ

angelia florensia (@Paperpleased)

RT @alignbetween: Words of encouragement for artists & bloggers who want to quit their day job, but can’t just yet 🙂 via @papernstitch http://t.co/qvJcapqJ

Rachel Vater (@rvartistmaker)

I’m already excited about this series.
This post is exactly what I needed. I made it my goal to do two craft shows this year; I’m frantically preparing for my second one right now (yay!). I’m completely freaked out about it because it’s a huge show – I almost didn’t apply. But I know that if it scares me a little bit then it’s probably exactly what I need to do.
I’m FAR from quitting my day job – I haven’t even made a profit yet.
But I will, because I can.
Julia A. recently posted..Crochet Inspiration

Julia A.

What if you know you want to quit your day job, but have no idea what to do instead (and for income)? I don’t even know what to go back to school for. *sigh*
zeghsy recently posted..Upromise | Make the Pledge

zeghsy

Great post, Brittne – I shared it with my readers too!
http://rochesterartisans.com/2012/10/24/how-hard-can-it-be/

Stefani Tadio

This post from @papernstitch today couldn’t be more true. Secrets to success… Rule #1 http://t.co/a9Yit6VM

leah duncan (@leahduncanisme)

Thank you for your inspiring post. It gives me hope.

Kimberly

Yay! Great post, thank you! Just what I need at the moment so I’m excited to read more, thanks 🙂

Mini Malone

thank you for you advises! It’s always cool to read people that in a way or another they made it!
Ale recently posted..Pochette for Portuguese Girl

Ale

RT”@leahduncanisme:This post from @papernstitch today couldn’t be more true.Secrets to success…Rule #1 http://t.co/muInJAdw” perked me up!

Amanda (@a_grayland)

RT @papernstitch: Secrets to Success: Rule #1: It’s not always easy to start a business, build a blog… http://t.co/46pkcXXd

Joy Johnston (@joyfuljohnston)

RT @leahduncanisme: This post from @papernstitch today couldn’t be more true. Secrets to success… Rule #1 http://t.co/a9Yit6VM

Gingiber (@ShopGingiber)

I always search for an inspiration. Thank you so much, this series will definitely help me out with my daily questions and difficulties (business days). The start of the series is itself a great boost. Thank you once again.
Shilpa Nair recently posted..Fair+well Collectibles

Shilpa Nair

I always love your posts, especially this ones. I’ve just started this year with my business and however it’s just the beginning, sometimes I think: What am I doing?!

Then I read posts like yours and I think, oh yeah, that’s why! 🙂
ktrn recently posted..mail

ktrn

Rule #1 in secrets to success! Thank you, @papernstitch for your words of wisom ! http://t.co/K2H9z5qO

(@IndieMade) (@IndieMade)

Secrets to Success: Rule #1 http://t.co/5C9IOSfN via @sharethis

(@RobinLNorgren) (@RobinLNorgren)

Thanks!!! I’m exactly living that momento. Quit job, new baby (new mom!), new blog, same husband (and soooooo!!! happy!), same house, new routine, new fears, same humor, same old friends, new friends also!… and so…

Felicitas

Secrets to Success: Rule #1 http://t.co/TvdW8NpF

Samantha Macy (@Froomla)

Catching up on reading Secrets to Success from @papernstitch | Rule #1 http://t.co/QJGgzXbl

Valerie Madison (@LilyEmme)

Useful, timely insights which are really helpful to those of us teetering on the brink, thank you 🙂
Kat recently posted..Quick update ~ poncho poll is now live!

Kat

Great words of wisdom, especially how I’m feeling about my blog this week. You need a pick-me-up some times as blogging can feel overwhelming. Thanks for sharing
Cate Holst recently posted..{kid’s in the kitchen} raspberry jelly hearts recipe for Mother’s Day

Cate Holst
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