When I first started this blog, it was a way to share my ideas and to express my creativity. I never thought it would help me discover what my dream would be. I’ve always had many passions, the kind of person that never said no to trying new things, and was always immersed in some sort of creative project. As a child I was a shy girl, until I got into high school where I first became involved in my interests like culinary classes, photography, and musical theatre. And then of course college, were I pursued educational degrees in both baking and event planning. They say that once you graduate college you’re suppose to find a job that eventually will lead you to a career in your set major, but that is much easier said than done. How do you tell someone like myself, that you have to limit your job to just a baking career or an event planner job description. Through this blog I found myself, and honed in on the passions that I see myself pursuing in my future. A business that combines my love of pie and ice cream, flowers and events, gardening and a sustaining our food system. Opening your own business establishment involves not only a concrete plan, but of course money.
With so many dreamers following their passion, small businesses have more means to establish themselves as many organizations have evolved to make them happen, like Kabbage. It’s an excellent funding resource for small business owners, where you can get a line of credit fast, and unlike traditional lenders, they approve businesses by looking at real life data, not just a credit score. For those whose dream is to own a business, store, or experience, like myself, Kabbage can make it happen! Kabbage approached me about their Dream Venture Campaign, and I thought it was a great concept to share my dream, and advice on how to attain yours. So if I had the opportunity the start my business tomorrow what would it be?
My vision for The Dreamery, at least that’s what it’d be called for now, is to create a space where people can have a great slice of pie alongside the best ice cream, with ingredients grown from the garden right on sight, a garden that can be enjoyed on an afternoon or used for an intimate dinner party or bridal shower. It’s a big dream, one that requires a lot of work. This dream first became somewhat of a seed in my mind in one of my culinary school classes, where we had to create a food business and learn the ins and outs of cost control, and managing profits. It’s where A La Mode, a plated pie and ice cream shop first became a clear vision in my mind, and on paper, as I had so clearly envisioned it down to the colors on the walls to the large windows and white farmhouse style building…
It takes time to develop a clear vision. Take all your ideas for your business and dwindle them down to the ones that are most important, ones that appeal to the customer either by solving a problem or offering them something unique. Once you’ve developed a clear vision for your business, write it down, and start thinking about all the steps – no matter how small – you need to get there. Now for my dream planning…
I write everything down – ideas, goals, recipes, tasks, styling inspiration, thoughts – anything that evokes something within me. If you haven’t already realized from the name of this blog, I’m a dreamer, a believer that no dream is small or unattainable. Whatever the dream, it can only come to life with a plan and action, but it also happens when you become the person you want to be first. One of the biggest ways I work towards my dreams is by setting goals for myself; every year, season, month, and day. Not large ones that one often sets too high and won’t achieve, like most new year’s resolutions, but important ones. For me they involve simple goals like being grateful for the small things to experimenting with new recipes or learning more about gardening. I break up how I plan to accomplish my broader goals into monthly task lists, making it more able and enjoyable to check off. I’m able to focus and become more mindful of the things I envision, and thus create a plan for my dream much like The Happiness Project creates a plan for a happy life. Being able to say I accomplished 20 minutes of reading up on business management or learning about the process of growing and using food to just smiling each day, shows that I’m committed to seeing my vision through.
When starting your own business you are your own motivator. You don’t have a boss setting deadlines, making sure you get work done, you have to do it for yourself. It means relying on yourself, but if it’s what you really want, the motivation will come naturally. You will be excited to do the things that align with your dream, whatever they may be and won’t mind putting in the long hours.
Along with being your own motivator, pursing your dream can often make you your own worst enemy. Learn not to be so hard on yourself if you’re not getting there fast enough or things aren’t panning out exactly how you planned. Practice small habits everyday that lead to a much bigger picture, and nurture the right habits, not the wrong ones. Cultivate the habit of success into your daily life. Keep at it, and recognize that even that smallest action is getting you closer. I too am guilty of this at times, but at the end of the day, I think of my support group, the people who believe and tell me how talented I am, and then it’s like nothing can stop me again. I bake desserts whenever possible, so that people can taste my skills, or I volunteer to help plan a party or offer to make a floral arrangement, in order to build a devoted clientelle. It’s important to do this, they will network and be your voice in the community. Make them believe in you, so that they are more than willing to do anything to help see your dream become reality, because they themselves want to use or take part in your business.
Pursuing a dream, means being patient. If you try to spread yourself too thin, you won’t accomplish any task successfully. When trying to see a dream come to life, remember that true success isn’t created overnight. It takes time and effort to get to any final stage of any goal. Take one day at a time, breathe and don’t shoot yourself down if you haven’t gotten the recognition you’ve wanted yet. It will happen if you’re persistent. Seek out as much information and resources that will benefit your vision. Find industry related resources, one of my favorites Biz Ladies and Ladies Who Launch, follow like-minded bloggers and entrepreneurs, and create a vision or pin board for your dream. The best thing you can do is to learn as much as you can, and become involved in ways to market yourself and your dream business. And like the saying “don’t judge a book by its cover”…
Don’t shoot down an opportunity when it comes around, just because it may not be obvious to you.
Life has a funny and strange way of opening itself to you, with chances, meetings, and opportunities that may seem insignificant but will have an important and long-lasting impact on your dream. Everything happens for a reason, and it’s not just an inspirational quote, it’s the truth, so believe it and believe in your dream!