Not Gonna Miss You January!
"If you are going through hell...keep going" - Winston Churchill
Ask any retail owner how they feel about January...chances are they will reply with a pained expression followed by the words "tough, quiet and long". As a retail owner myself I know all too well how tough January can be. As a retail owner in the small coastal town of Aberystwyth, January is not only quiet, as in devoid of sales, but emotionally brutal. Like a cruel mistress, Aberystwyth retail makes you feel so attractive, so wanted at Christmas, but come January you are dumped, forgotten, and empty with out as much as a good bye!
Through out January the only consistent contact I am likely to have in the shop will be the postman and the window cleaner on a Friday. I know other small town businesses can relate to this and therefore I realize I am not alone when it comes to the January Barren. Apologies.... but this does not comfort me. January does something very strange to my well -being....it throws everything off-balance (including my bank balance!) and suddenly the magic that is retail at Christmas seems too much like a distant memory and I begin to doubt it ever existed! "You are only as good as your last sale" starts to play loudly in my head and I find myself going to the dark side!
So.....so this January for the sake of my mental health and general attitude to retail, I was determined to do it differently. I would not let January reduce me to a quivering wreck. I would not measure my sense of self -worth and ability as a business owner against January Sales! (I realize how silly this must sound!) I was going to embrace the quietness! I was going to use this limited time to re-cap, re-charge and carefully plan the next season. Like a master of mindfulness, I was determined to find joy in the everyday solitude and fulfilment in the little things.
Well...well today is the 31st of January. The left over Christmas chocolate in the shop has now been eaten. All I can confidently say is that I got through it. Despite everything...despite January...I am determined to keep going!