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The First Market is Complete!

After a long, long, long, time procrastinating I finally booked a market. It was spur of the moment and I spent way more than I should have on the set up but it was a risk I was willing to take.

I'm not sure about anyone else but impostor syndrome is real and very strong. I found it so hard to push myself into this next step of my business. On the one hand if I take the step and fail or no one likes my art/designs then I would be crushed and it would, very dramatically, be the end of AcePop! (yes, my ego is that fragile) On the other hand if I procrastinate going to a market until the end of time I would never have to find out if my anxieties are real and I technically never failed.

It is not logic logic, it is anxiety logic that makes perfect sense deep down but when you talk about it?... not so much.

So I decided to look around, make my lists of possible places, do my research and see where it takes me. In the process of this I asked to be put on a market waiting list with The Pop Up Emporium, an East Sussex based Pop Up founded in 2018. It is closer to home which is great, as I have the security of the town I know whilst doing something so nerve wracking for me, so I signed up!

Little did I know that a short time later a spot would open up for this very month and the decision that I had put off for so long would throw itself at me. So I did something I rarely ever do. I made a definitive decision.

I planned, I worried, I printed a lifetime's worth of art and bookmarks and pinned 170 pins to backing cards. I worried I would be bringing too much. I worried I would be bringing too little. However, as I am sure you can predict it was very anticlimactic. I had planned well and had enough stock (maybe a bit too much but not so much that it would be ridiculous), I had practiced the table layout and had pictures to reference when setting up. I roped in a very good friend to help and she was amazing support. I had business cards, discount coupons for sales, bags and extra labels (something I learned from my current day job. Always have extra labels. ALWAYS!).

It went off without a hitch and though, on the first day, I may have gone red in the face and got hot sweats every time I spoke to or looked at anyone, I was used to that and could deal with it. Everyone was welcoming, kind and happy to chat. Every stallholder was interested in what everyone was selling and seemed so nice and supportive of each other. The atmosphere was great.

I know that even the most seasoned stallholder will have days where they make not a single sale, or they forget something vital or have a bad day in general etc. However, for my first ever stall this couldn't have gone better, I made enough to pay the stall fee and a little extra, it was steady and not rammed so I wasn't overwhelmed, I didn't forget to bring anything and I had my amazing support system. I will definitely be doing it again and I am already looking into the next market!

I realised doing this that I haven't pushed myself in quite a while, I was in my comfort zone and I was bored. I firmly believe that if you're happy then stay in your comfort zone. All of these quotes telling you to push yourself just to push yourself don't make sense to me. If you want change push yourself, if you're bored make a change. If you are happy and content and like the way things are then why push for something else just because someone told you you should always be pushing?

This time though I needed to push myself and I knew in the back of my mind I needed it, as I sought it out and committed so readily. I am so glad I did and I cannot wait to do more, whether bad or good I want to weather the through these markets and see where they take me.

Some of you reading this may think, 'What's the big deal? it's a market just go and get over it.' Which is true, I habitually make mountains out of molehills, however my mountains are not your mountains and things you may pause at I might not. Everyone is different and their hangups and fears will never be yours. The point of this blog is to express myself and if you choose to read that's great, if not that is also

great. Also, if you read and totally understand how I feel, then I am glad I could reach you and if you cannot possibly understand then I am also glad and I hope you take this as just another perspective and experience of the world.

Thank you for reading!

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