I sat there at knit night, needles clinking against each other… it was actually my very first knit night.
I was surrounded by amazing and awe-inspiring women talking about their creative handmaker businesses (I had run two successful businesses prior but at the moment I was just figuring out how to be a new mom.), and I yearned to speak up and talk about all things fiber and business but I didn’t. I kept my mouth shut. I sat there intimidated by these “big” names in the industry that I had just started to call friends.
So there I just sat. Fly on the wall soaking up all the conversations.
That was the moment I knew I HAD to be a part of this industry. This is what made my heart sing and this is where I belonged at the time! This was home… Yet I still didn’t belong…
I just kept sitting there needles clinking and furiously knitting while not really paying attention to the garter stitch I was doing because my heart was pounding to speak up. To say something to start carving my place in this fiber world… and yet every time I wanted to say something, my mouth opened but nothing came out… It looked like I was trying to catch flies in my mouth.
Then the night ended and everyone started to pack up. Oh well… I’ll speak next time… Always next time… Then she stopped me.
“Hey, so what are you doing lately? Aren’t you wanting to start something?”
“Yes…” I said sheepishly.
“Oh cool what is it?”
Oh, know… she wants to know… I have to actually speak? Ok… what DO I want to do? I don’t even know! I thought I did but it doesn’t make sense anymore…
“I… uh… wanna do… like… fashion styling for knitters…” (wow that came out so stupid)
She looked at me with this confused face that my words sounded as stupid as I felt…
“What do you mean by that Chelsea? I don’t think that will really work… How will that work?”
I stumbled out some quiet in coherent words and just started to CRY!
YES, I SAT THERE AND CRIED TO ONE OF MY FIBER IDOLS THAT I HAD NO IDEA WHAT I WANTED TO DO…
“Well, Chelsea… you’ll figure it out…”
And that was that… I was an utter idiot… (at least in my own world…)
I drove home bawling the entire way and swore never to go to knit night EVER again…
(and actually, I haven’t now that I think of it…)
The next morning I woke up, swollen, red, scratchy eyes. All I want to be is a fiber boss like them… They sat at knit night talking about how nobody is willing to collaborate or talk because they are scared of competition. Nobody wants to mentor or help. Everyone is living in fear…
THAT’S IT! I know business. I believe in collaboration. And I KNOW others want to be a FiberBOSS! That’s what I’m going to do!
The next week I went into major action and created the beginnings of FiberBoss.
I will NEVER forget this experience. Because this IS the moment I chose to become a FiberBoss. I finally CHOSE to speak up and do something imperfectly and just DO it. I discovered who I was as an entrepreneur. I discovered my ideal clients through community. And I went into action! According to my dear friend Jennifer Kem, I went and got seen, heard, and PAID! (You can learn how to do this too here.)
So how many times have you sat there (metaphorically or literally) and just didn’t speak up? How many times have you sat there and said I’ll try again next time? I’ll wait till I have everything figured out before I start?
*I raise my hand to all those time and time again*
But what I CAN tell you is that the moment you just do it. Even if you blurt it out in a jumbled, incoherent mess… you then become one step closer than you were yesterday. Taking the first, imperfect step to achieving your dreams is when you start to become a FiberBOSS as opposed to just a hobbyist.
So when is your first imperfect messy step going to be? When will you define yourself as a FiberBOSS? Today is the day to start… don’t wait… speak up!