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.
I want to take a moment to thank some people who have help me along the way: Nicholas for entertaining the kids during all of my events; my upline Chris for calling me to help brainstorm ideas; to Janice for her social media and zoom trainings; to Linda for helping me every step of the way since she has been to Alaska so many times and knows firsthand how much we will enjoy it; to Kala for always asking me where I am in my points; to Vickie for placing orders during these final days and offering her own stamp sets as incentives for others; to Melinda for her support and coming to help me with other projects so I could focus more on sales; to all the IN Stampers who sacrificially helped me in the final months. Thank you to everyone who has placed an order this last year, come to one of my events, or made a card with me. Thank you! I am so grateful!