Does anyone remember about 10+ years ago Sarah Jessica Parker came out with a clothing and shoe line? She was so pretentious and overly confident that it made me not want to buy her stuff. I remember watching her on Oprah and wanting to throw my own shoe at the TV. Ewww. I guess others did not want to buy it either because it completely went away. And so did her line. I don’t even remember where she was selling her products. Certainly not at the mall.
Fast forward to 2015 and I just saw her on Hoda & Kathie Lee talking about her new shoe line and why it’s different. She was much more chill and did not use big, fluffy words to describe her life and style. I don’t even think she reference Sex in the City and she wasn’t sitting on a stage talking with Oprah. Thank God. It made me more curious about the shoes, but more imoprtantly it made me curious about what went on behind the scenes with her business and idea and projection.
Was she super disappointed? Upset? Embarrassed? Or was it a blip in her schedule? A shrug of the shoulders?
Well, like I tend to do, I made up a story in my head where she was really ashamed that her line did not do well and she had to completely shut it down. I pictured her really disappointed and that is why she did not try again for another 10 years. I imagined her saying, “I’m going to do this differently this time and it’s going to be more approachable and low-key.” I’m also not going to blow up social media patting myself on the back.
Now, I have no idea if any of this was felt or said, but it did make me wonder about how famous and posh people hit the reset button. It made me realize that famous and posh people HAVE to set the reset button sometimes. Love that. It makes me think that business is really not personal, it is about the customer needing and wanting to buy what is being sold. Yes, marketing and design helps, but it also has to be easy and fit into the client’s life and lifestyle. It doesn’t matter if you are Sarah Jessica Parker or the Pope coming to DC. People have to buy what you are selling because it is relevant to them. BTW – I heart this Pope!
Thinking this way can take the sting out of our creative businesses. I think of all the artists that let their paintings sit and collect dust at my favorite lunch place, Cassatt’s. They hang on the wall with price tags and labels and some of them have been there for years. I stare at them and wonder where I would put them in my home. No where. At least I have not found one that I want to spend the money on and can work in my space. It’s not personal.
This idea can help us, Friends. Let me encourage you and me that we are not our products, our paintings, our pottery, our paint. There is a gap between us and the work and in that gap is where we need to detach a bit and know that we are okay even if we do not selling our landscaped painting. We are still important and special and creative.
Art is personal. But selling art is business.
Feel good about the work and the process and then let it go. Ha! As if it were this easy. Our sensitivity is what makes us good at creating, which is why it is hard to detach. How about we just lean into it a bit and when we get anxious remind ourselves that we are good and worthy. Even though sometimes we feel scared.