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The Longest Blog Post Ever! Because Quarantine.

Posted by Tanya Matthews on

For the last six months, I’ve thought at least once a week that I need to make my inaugural blog post on my website. For whatever reason, I put it off until we were in the middle of a global pandemic. Hey…nobody ever accused me of being sensible. Or of not being a procrastinator.

You see, if this were my first “not-in-the-middle-of-a-global-pandemic” blog post, I would spend some time introducing myself, telling you why I started my business, explaining my vision, etc. But I’m going to skip that for now and get to what’s really on my mind.

Here it is: I’m struggling. Yes Tanya <<insert eyeroll here>>, isn’t everyone? YES! And that makes me struggle more. You see, I’m trying to keep my business going. But with every social media post…every sale…every website email campaign…I can’t stop thinking about you. Now, keep in mind “you” isn’t everyone that is reading this right now. But if:

  • You’re the person that turns to shopping for therapy when you feel bad, and you end up with a bunch of things you won’t wear or use
  • You’re the person that sees something you like and buys it even though you can’t afford it
  • You’re the person that wants to support small businesses and spends all the money you make from your small business to do so
Then yeah…I’m thinking about you. Why? Because I used to be like you. I was a shopaholic (not going to lie…I still am…but now I’m buying inventory for my business, so it doesn’t count…right?!). I was terrible with money and thought a budget was just a “loose suggestion”. If my business was going well, then I wanted to help everyone else succeed by supporting other small businesses (which, smh, includes buying a round of drinks for everyone in the bar every month or so <<insert face palm emoji here>>). And, when something in my world was upside down, I knew I could turn it around if I could just buy something to make it better.  What’s “it”? You name it.
Feeling old? Face masks and wrinkle cream! (still sitting in my bathroom cupboard unused)
Feeling fat? Work-out gear and new clothes to make me look thinner! (either in my closet with tags on or in my Goodwill pile)
Feeling like I looked better when my hair was longer? Vitamins and hair tonic (yes, I said tonic. Who says that?)
Feeling ugly? Make-up and teeth whitening strips! Feeling sad and unmotivated? Self-help books! Feeling guilty? Gifts for others! Feeling hungry? Well…you get it.
And, if I (as the current me) was talking to the old me about what the old me (that still exists right now) should do in the middle of a global pandemic, here’s how it would go:
Current me: SAVE YOUR MONEY!
Old me: Yeah…I know…but I’m getting money from the government soon so I think I can just put this one little thing that I think I really need on my credit card…And did I mention it’s on sale? I need to act fast!
Current me: NO CREDIT CARDS!
Old me: Duhhhh, I’m not stupid! I’m not putting it on just any credit card. I’m putting it on the one that has no interest for six months! I’m sure this will be over by then
Current me: <<shaking old me violently>> LISTEN TO YOURSELF! YOU’RE NOT MAKING ANY SENSE! YOU DON’T KNOW HOW LONG THIS IS GOING TO LAST! (I can be dramatic sometimes)
Old me: well if this isn’t going to end soon and it gets worse, then why in the world would I need money? Honestly, I should make an INVESTMENT and buy some books about starting a garden and living off the land

Well that escalated quickly… But I hope you get the point. I don’t want my customers to buy things they don’t need and/or can’t afford. There. I said it. As if I have any control over that. Which I don’t. I know I can’t stop it from happening unless I shut down completely. Which...to come full circle…is what I’m struggling with.

When I try to talk to others about my second thoughts about running a (non-essential) business that sells (unnecessary) clothing to people that aren’t in the right frame of mind (re: global pandemic), they generally tell me one of two things: “small businesses need to keep going or the economy is going to collapse” OR “you’re overthinking this”.

And THEY ARE BOTH RIGHT! What’s worse…I KNOW THEY ARE RIGHT, I SELF-TALK USING THESE SAME MANTRAS and I TELL OTHER PEOPLE THE SAME THING! Yeah…I’m still shouting (at current me. Not old me or current you). But I can’t seem to shake it, so I thought getting it off my chest might help. Thank you for listening.

In reality, I’m not actually thinking seriously about closing, and I feel camaraderie amongst other small business owners as I know they are struggling with this and similar issues. Nothing seems to be clear anymore, which is hard for everyone, and especially hard for overthinkers (a.k.a. me).

Whew! That was a lot. Now that I’ve said my piece, I want to close with a couple of other things that have been on my mind:

  • If you placed an order on Facebook or on my website in the last couple of weeks, THANK YOU! I sincerely appreciate you, and right now you are the beating heart of my business
  • If you feel bad because you can’t afford to place an order or want to save your money, I UNDERSTAND and appreciate you thinking of me and wishing me success
  • If you’ve taken the time to read/watch, comment on, like and/or share my social media posts, THANK YOU! I sincerely appreciate you, and every comment, like and share is another chance that my business will make it long term
  • If you have no idea who I am or what the #$%@ Frolics even is or what this person you’ve never met is rambling about…THAT’S OKAY TOO! I still wish you the best in these uncertain times (and please search for @frolicsboutique on FB and Insta)

Until next week, stay safe and healthy!

Virtual XOXO,

Tanya

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