It’s Marathon Monday in Massachusetts… without the marathon. The streets from Hopkinton to Boston are supposed to be stuffed with cheering supporters and athletes who have trained all year to reach this amazing common goal of an incredible feat of endurance. This thing that’s supposed to bring us all together is just… missing. And in a time when what we need most is to feel a sense of community it all just feels like it stings a little more than expected.
And all that feels like the perfect metaphor for what we small business owners are feeling and going through these days. For lots of us, the businesses we’ve built up from scratch, worked long hours and made huge sacrifices for… are just as much a ghost town as the streets from Hopkinton to Boston today. So what do we do? We the dreamers, we the strivers, we the entrepreneurs. When the world changes so much that our old ways of working become obsolete… we adapt. We keep building, but in a different direction. We don’t give up hope, because hope is so much of what small businesses run on. We stare the silence and the uncertainty in the face and we try to understand it and make something new out of it.
Right now, it feels like there’s a hole in my heart where all the events we usually design for used to be. I’m feeling the loss of all of the businesses who would usually just be getting off the ground and needing everything from branding to websites and so, SO much more, because fear and uncertainty is keeping them grounded. So much of my enthusiasm for my work comes from the enthusiasm of the people I create that work for, and these days fear and worry are getting in the way of that enthusiasm for so many people. So what do we do with this empty space (silence and empty space being something a small business owner is NEVER used to…). We find something amazing to fill it!!!
This is officially my 5th year in business. 5 years running an organization that I have loved every single day (even on the bad days!). 5 years of growth and surprise, learning that there was SO MUCH inside of me that I’d never imagined could be there. 5 years of dreaming and realizing those dreams in ways that were even bigger and better than I’d planned. This year I celebrate all of that work. This year, along with anyone and everyone who needs help finding their new path in this new world, I get to discover what Inkind Design will continue to grow into. This year I will, again, be surprised and delighted by this crazy business that I took the leap into, not knowing who I’d be or where I’d land when I did. And when all of this is over, when the world starts to heal and return to whatever “normal” will be when we get there… I know that my heart will be as full as ever because I gave as much to myself and my own business as I’ve always given to the people I love so much and am grateful to call my clients.
For me, #quarantine2020 is an opportunity to share the love that I have for my work with the world. To own all of the hard work and passion it’s taken to get me to where I am now. This year, I am my own client, and I will shout that self-love as loud as I can so that the whole world can hear. And at the end of it all, who knows who I’ll be... But I suppose that’s what makes it all so much fun.