I am thrilled to announce, with a little over a day left before the deadline, I have achieved my 12 month goal of earning (not winning), the Stampin' Up! incentive trip to Alaska! This is a first for me, a result of years of being focused on sharing what I love.
A little over 6.5 years ago, we moved to Indiana. As we left Illinois and my crafting community there, I decided to sign up to be a Stampin' Up! demonstrator and try to establish a similar crafting group in Indianapolis. At that time, my son was three months old and I was a stay-at-home mom looking to make connections and have a hobby outside of changing diapers.
I soon eased back into education, working part-time during the day and crafting by nights and weekends.
Two years ago, I started "working from home" and decided to approach Stampin' Up! more as a job, not just a hobby. As my business grew and I met new people through church, Meetup groups, and craft fairs, I saw my business slowly growing into a team of crafters now named the IN Stampers.
One year ago, my upline earned her first incentive trip, an all-expense paid trip for two to Thailand. I remember our phone conversation after she earned it saying: if she could do it, I could do it. Hmmmm. The next incentive trip had been announced: Alaska. While I am more of a beach traveller myself, my husband has long since wanted to go to Alaska. And since we were both turing 40 this year, I made the decision to try to earn the trip.
Now, I have taught SMART goal setting for many years, but never have I attempted to achieve a goal such as this. Yes, earning a college degree is somewhat similar in regards to a journey and not a sprint. But never have I set a goal a year in advance, with several short-term goals each month, with several systems of accountability in place to keep me on track.
A few months ago, I almost gave up. I crunched the numbers and said it was not possible. During my bi-monthly coaching call with my Business Development Advisor, I told her I was throwing in the towel. She crunched the numbers with me and said: if this happened, and then this happened, and I sold $3000 for two months in a row, I could still do it. It still sounded impossible, but all I know is I couldn't live with the feeling of giving up. So I kept on.
It was not easy. Exhausting, really. It kept me up at night. It awoke me early in the morning. But today, I can say, it is done! Next July, Nicholas and I will be flying to Seattle and then boarding a cruise ship for seven days. I am beyond excited! And while the new Stampin' Up! year starts tomorrow, I have decided not to strive to earn the next incentive trip to the Greek Isles. I plan to take a year of reprieve and focus on supporting and building my team.