A few years back, I developed the products, yoga sweat towels, and an anti-smell spray for yoga clothes, Saucha. I created the brand, all of the marketing and executed a Kickstarter campaign for funding. I had some good sales, and did this all while moonlighting on my capital equipment medical device sales job.
Then God intervened and had other plans for me. I was recruited from the medical device company I was working for to another highly respected, world-class medical device company selling highly technical equipment to the most intense type of brain and spine surgeons. After seven in-person interviews, two ride-alongs, two personality assessments, and a final interview with the leadership team, I was offered and accepted the Territory Manager position.
When I think back to that time, I sometimes feel like I failed because I shut down my little dream by closing the e-commerce website and completely quit marketing the products once I landed the new rep job. I quit before I had sold out of my inventory, which was roughly 5,000 towels that I had imported from India and 200 bottles of the Saucha spray. But it's what I had to do to further my career, and it's what I had to do to take care of my family and ultimately be a good mom and wife.
It all began with grand ambitions. I was going to have 1 million subscribers on my list, hundreds of yoga studios to sell to, and I was going to travel around the country selling my products. I believed this would happen, so I ordered 5,000 labels for my Saucha spray bottles! At 5,000, I got a deep discount, and I truly believed I would make tons of Saucha spray for the world to rid their yoga pants of the funky, musty smell that we all experience after workouts.
But it didn't. It turns out that it takes a ton of money to acquire customers digitally, and yoga studios are challenging to sell to because they don't ever answer their phones. Granted, they're probably teaching yoga or running the business operations they didn't expect to run because they opened a yoga studio to teach yoga, not do business.
I learned that life, our dreams, or our intentions don't always work the way we intended, the way we wanted, what we dreamed, or hoped for, and that it doesn't always combine like a perfect ven diagram.
It was just last year I threw the labels away. I had to wait four years to get rid of them. I couldn't part with the labels as they represented so much more than a sticker. I look at dreams as little parts of ourselves being birthed into the world. Sometimes they thrive, like Elon Musk and his visions or Emily Weiss with Glossier. Sometimes they don't. Sometimes they lead us to other things, new dreams, new hopes.
Sometimes we quit too early. Because it's hard, we might get bored, maybe it's a bad idea, and no one wants to buy from you. Other times a door actually shuts, and you need to be aware of that.
I bought 5,000 labels, and I'm glad I put my dreams into motion because I learned an enormous amount, but what I learned by admitting my mistakes and moving on with my career is worth more to me personally and professionally than sticking it out.