5 life lessons from our personal experiences.
2018 has been a very interesting year for us at Staavias. As the sole owner of Staavias, every move I make both personally & professionally has a huge impact on the business. I know you're probably eager to find out what's happening with Staavias!!!! Well, keep reading, you're about to find out...
On 30th December 2017 my family & I relocated to Australia. We decided we wanted something different for our family, for our sons and we agreed it could be a good move for business too. It's been 10 months already!! We've enjoyed every minute of our new life here in Aussie, boys are settled, we've found a great church, made lots of friends, we're all very active and just enjoying life. Definitely the best decision for the family.
As you can imagine, relocating an entire family to another country requires a lot of planning & work before, during and after. I made an executive decision to put Staavias on hold so I could focus on getting my family settled - it was only supposed to be a temporary thing. When I say Staavias was on hold - the website was up, our social media was up but I wasn't actively working on our business so you would've seen a post here and there, an email probably once but nothing consistent. So I was still working but just not full time like I should've been.
Staavias being on hold ended up taking longer than anticipated when I was in a car accident early March. I had bruising around my jaw line & neck, across my chest and all around my upper body. I had also injured my tail bone when my body flung back into the chair, I suspect my tail bone hit the part where the seat belt clicks in. It was so painful, I couldn't stand for long periods or sit at all and I was told it was a 4 - 6 week recovery period.
In May, I accidentally inhaled a lot of carbon monoxide when I walked into the garage one morning at 4.30am. My husband was warming up the car for work but hadn't opened up the doors. I was half asleep and didn't even notice. Within 10 minutes I started feeling dizzy & light headed and my eyes were getting really heavy. I tried to fight it and still went to the office that morning. Well, I didn't last long, I ended up in hospital that day, spending approx. 8 hours on oxygen to get the carbon monoxide out of my system. I had to rest afterwards and so again, Staavias was put on hold even further.
Ohh don't worry it gets better - Last month we moved out of our first rental, the lease finished and I couldn't stand the home owner so we opted to leave. Our new house wasn't ready so we moved in with my brother & his family while we waited. We moved everything to his house, then 2 weeks later moved everything to the new house. Moving houses in general is a nightmare and just so much work!! But when you have a landlord from hell, it's like never ending - one thing after another. Again, Staavias had to take a back seat.
Although Staavias was on hold, I was able to still finalise our new collection of 46 shoes. It took me a good few months but got there in the end. As per our process, once designs approved they're sent to factory for sampling. Due to the size of the new collection, our factories started getting lazy, picking and choosing the "easy designs" to do. Given I couldn't travel all communication was done via text/emails. When they were due, I noticed the samples were smaller - when I asked, I found they couldn't be bothered doing it in my size. HOW RUDE!!! I couldn't really tell them off from here so I've been trying to get them to make them in my size. They've started now but it was just a huge waste of time for everyone involved. So disappointing!!
I went to NZ for the Samoan Business Awards end of September, where I was awarded Entrepreneur of the Year 2018 award. What an honour it was. Such an amazing experience, I spent the weekend in NZ but on my way back, I started having chest pains mid air, I ignored it at first once it went away. One morning while I was at my desk, I legit thought I had a heart attack. All of a sudden I felt so much pressure from my back onto my chest, spreading to my shoulders and underarms. I was struggling to breathe, felt like my air way was blocked. I had a client in front of me so I couldn't panic but she could see the discomfort in my face and pushed me to call a doctor. After describing my symptoms, I was admitted to hospital. Doctors did thorough checks as they were 99% sure I had a heart attack too based on what I described. They were so puzzled when all my test results showed I was super healthy and nothing at all wrong with me. It was so strange, in fact the weirdest thing ever.
A few days after the hospital stint, I went to the doctors to follow up as directed. What he told me next was a bit of a surprise. He said "I think you have anxiety from all the stress of everything that's happening in your life and around you. You have your family life, your business, your work, your children's new school, your children's weekly sport & fitness, your big move, temporary accommodation, fighting with previous landlord, samples & suppliers not done but not being able to travel to sort it out and the pressure of not being able to provide new styles when everyone is waiting for them and you run on 5 hours sleep a day - you're only human Gustavia" You're going to get worn out very soon if you don't stop. I smiled and replied "Well, when you put it like that, wow that is a lot". He recommended some medication and rest. Now if you know me personally, you'll know how paranoid I am that I don't even take panadol.
After that visit I went for a long drive by myself with my music on blast, it's like my 2nd favourite me time after getting my nails done lol. I started reflecting on my year thus far and I finally realised, wow it has been a lot. What a year!!! I do think I have stress and anxiety but very minimal and to a certain degree - I mean I usually get stressed out and anxious when things appear dirty or people are too close to me lol or when things don't go the way I want it to go - I actually think that stresses out everyone right?? LOL The doctors words repeated in my head, wow it really made me think about life and how we only get to live life once. Y O L O
You know to really summarise what my experiences have taught me this year, I have a few points:
- Choose your battles carefully, some are not even worth your attention.
- You cannot do everything on your own - It's ok to ask for help.
- It's also ok to have a rest - business doesn't go anywhere. You'll come back from your rest and it'll still be there along with all the headaches that come with it LOL
- Enjoy life, don't be so focussed on moving forward all the time. Enjoy the moment with your loved ones. Make memories especially with your children, they're only young for a short time.
- Nothing is ever wasted, every thing happens for a reason. God's timing is always perfect. Always take the good and leave the bad. Truth is my experiences have helped me grow as an individual, as a Mum, as a wife and as a businesswoman.
So now that we all moved in and settled, I feel like I'm on fire lol ok may need to relax there a little lol but I'm super excited for the future. Things are falling into place now, Staavias is picking up as I've started working on it. Knowing what I know now, experiencing what I have, I feel motivated and inspired to keep pushing forward. This year has been a year of persistence and overcoming challenges.
Have you had a similar experience? Share your stories in the comment section below, I'd love to read them. If you enjoyed reading this blog, share it with someone you care about, someone you know will benefit from reading this! Sharing is caring!
Can't wait to hear about your stories below!
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