Monday, February 20, 2012

Progress Doesn't Always Mean Moving FORWARD

One of my biggest thrills comes from seeing things progress, actually SEEING movement.  I love it when I am productive, getting things accomplished, checking off my to do list. In other words, moving forward.  I get addicted to that feeling that I am making a difference in something, for someone or just improving my overall quality of life whether it be business or home related. 

I mentioned it before, though.  I am a major critic of myself.  My expectations are crazy high.  And the problem at this point is that once I see what I am capable of, I want MORE the next time.  So, I'm constantly uping my own game. 

Right now, I am eyeballs deep in a complete brand overhaul.  I have been in business for almost 9 years doing chidren's resale, new and gently used baby clothing, toys and accessories, online at  It started out in my garage with a few items stored neatly and posted online for the world to see.  The orders didn't pour in at first...but eventually they came.  Little by little.  One by one. 

Over the years, business has grown and my sales have typically doubled each year. I've moved from a small office to a small office with a warehouse, to a bigger office with a gigantic warehouse and hired a few of the world's greatest employees.  Our new location perfectly represents the concept I have always envisioned for the Baby Outfitter brand, a modern twist on upscale children's resale. 

I decided that the site, I'd been operating for years, was out-dated and not very user friendly.  It didn't embody the overall experience I wanted my customers to have with us.  So, we set about constructing an entirely new site that was loads more user-friendly, with some super-fab new concepts, that represented the brand more accurately and most importantly was forward thinking in terms of building a community within popular social media.

This lead to a dreamer's dream.  What if the site could do this?  Oh...and what if shoppers could have this?  Dreams got big, quick, let me tell ya. But, we had to think quickly and start implementing these ideas.

So, I decided to tap into that ever powerful world of mommy bloggers out there and get the word out in a very creative way, a video fashion shoot.  We contracted with Kiera at and began shooting, in less than 2 days mind you, an incredibly PERFECT little commercial featuring some of the cutest little local models, ranging in size from newborn to 8, to show off some of our products in fun and unique way.

The video photo shoot turned out EXACTLY as we'd hoped.  And we are so happy to be getting it ready to load on the site. We purchased a commissioned song from Bella Ruse, a wonderfully quirky duo with some amazing talent and a perfect sound to represent our brand...check them out at  (Be sure to listen to Satan Served Me's stuck in my head.)

Things were moving so fast.  Working on the website, coming up with new text, formats and concepts, shifting gears to the fashion shoot and compiling outfits from our inventory and matching them up to the models we had available, designing props and reviewing clips.  But, now the pace has slowed a bit. 

Unfortunately, I didn't go to school for any of this.  I'm just a mom.  A mom with five kids trying to run a business and maintain some sort of household.  The more I pursue, the more I realize how much I need to learn.  I'm not IT guy and although I have a vision for design, in terms of how I want things to look, I am not able to program, code or design graphically.  So, I have done what I can on paper and passed my work on to those who CAN do those things.  And now, I wait.  I wait with the perverbial ants in my pants. 

I spent most of yesterday, here at the office, (yes..I was working on sunday - have to stop doing that)feeling frustrated about my ability to navigate my way through all the html, the graphic design, the twitter tweets, the facebook posts, the pinterest stuff I have yet to learn, ...there is just so much right now.  So many things that I am not totally prepared to act on. And most of the time lately, I feel like I am four steps behind everyone else.  So, the waiting was taking a bit of a toll on me. 

I had a conversation last week with Katie, one of my fabulous team members.  I woke up this morning with a statement I'd made her to, stuck in my head.  Progress doesn't always mean moving forward.  Progress is progress.  And although I feel right now that everything is at a stand-still and I should be working faster, harder on....fill in the blanks...I need to step back and take a look at how far we've actually come in such a short amount of time. Take a look at how much we've accomplished and how great it feels to completly NAIL IT!

 I am just so quick to judge myself and say I should or I could.  Why? 

Sometimes, idling in neutral is progress.  Idling is the opportunity to look back, analyze thoughts, gather data while building momentum.  And THAT my friends, is what give us the power to shoot forward again.

There you have it.  Progress doesn't always have to mean moving forward.  So don't beat yourself up about slowing down, or even staying in the same place, just make sure you keep that "engine" reving because you're about to go places - places you've never dreamed.


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