Monday, June 15, 2009

Good Advice or Idle Random Thoughts?

It was such a lovely vacation and I did so regret having to pack it all up and head home. And somehow I just can't seem to get back into the hectic pace of business everyday. My mind keeps balking at all those chores that you have to do on a daily basis just to keep a store open and alive. I keep seeing those cloudless blue skies and the beautiful white sand beach and thinking about going back to stay!

Alas, it seems that even before the week was done the storm clouds came rolling in. You know how that can take over your perspective on just about everything. It seems that everywhere I look now I see business articles geared to giving advice to just keep on keeping on during the downturn. You have to get more customers through the door, add on to your sales, update your inventory, advertise in new ways, increase email, re-train your staff, and keep a good attitude.

Now that is a LOT of advice and to be really truthful, it can tire you out before you even get to reading the articles . I, for one, have taken an oddly distanced reaction to all of this and I am attributing it to my current frame of mind.

I have just recently spent much quality time "doing nothing" and enjoying it immensely. I lolled around all day at the beach reading a huge stack of good fiction that I have been saving for that rainy day with nothing to do. I have been giving a lot of thought to the retirement scenario. My lease comes due for renewal in a few months and I have been asking the age old question "what would happen if I just quit?" And I have been making all the lists of things that I would have to do to make it happen ( or not happen depending on which way you view it) so that I could close the door at the end of the year and have no regrets. Is there anyone else out there mulling over these same things?

I just found out that my next door neighbor's store was burglarized over the week-end. And the really great part about it is that they found a wallet left behind with a driver's license and all sorts of identification. Now, the first reaction has to be "what a dummy", but then you think that it must be a frame-up job. Surely no one would be that stupid or careless. Or would they. I guess we won't find out until we hear back from the police. But this just added one more item to the list of reasons why I don't need to be doing this anymore. Who really needs the emotional stress of worrying about a place 24/7, rain or shine, 52 weeks of the year?

I will be doing some hard thinking in the next few weeks - I've allowed myself to the end of the month to figure it out. What would I do if I weren't doing what I've done for so long? My family says "Ha!" - you are never without something to do!!" And they are right. I have never lacked for something ( or many somethings) to do to keep myself occupied and happy. I know that there have been a lot of things that I have had to say no to doing that I would really have liked to have done. And I could certainly learn to enjoy living in the world of "spare time" that seems to always elude me now.

But will this love of the retail game, the excitement of design, and that thrill of creativity win again? Will I be here still trying to keep it all in line? Will I miss those buying trips to Dallas, Atlanta, and New York?? Will I miss the excitement of greeting the UPS man with my box cutter and scissors in hand, ready to open the first arrivals of the new season? Of course I will. But I can't help but think that there will be other exciting things to witness, other fun adventures to experience, and new friends to meet.

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