So, considering the expanse of our goal of WORLD PIE DOMINATION, you would think that the route to take to get there would be pretty easy to identify…except lately the whole plan of “bake a lot of pies, sell a lot of pies” seems to be lost in all the noise that comes with the day-to-day operations of PJP Buttonwood. I think the guy that developed the “work on your business, not in your business” mantra really should have named it “sometimes you are going to feel overwhelmed and lost and everyone will want something from you and so sometimes you need to step back from the mixing bowl for some introspective time of thought” mantra. (And this is exactly why I haven’t written a best-selling book on business practices…brevity has never been my strong suit, and that is the least of it.)
I have at least 15 people currently waiting on some sort of decision from Jeanne and I about something. Should we do another round of radio ads? Do we want to continue video work for our website? Can we make a donation to four different charities that have put in a request? Do we want to order a logo stamp? Should we make a banner for our front window? Should we meet with a broker from a competitor food broker company? Is Amazon Prime Pantry really as good as it sounds? Should we expand our Saturday hours? Are we interested in doing another magazine ad? And on and on and on. I would like to say here that I need a personal assistant, but I’ve actually received some unsolicited resumes from people who want to be my assistant…and to those people, I say a) we can’t afford it, and b) even if we could, we would likely drive you crazy (but that said, if you are willing to work for free, fetch coffee, remind me not to leave my sunglasses everywhere, and whisper “serenity now” to me on the regular, definitely email me).
And look, these problems we have at PJP are some very First World Problems indeed. I’m just saying to you – to the person who desperately dreams of starting a business of your own – that this nagging feeling of overwhelmed rarely seems to dissipate. I keep waiting for it to subside, especially as I get better at saying no to things we don’t need, want, or have the budget for. But even so, the line of people who have a service to offer or a need to meet seems infinitely longer than the time and money we have available. And for someone who could write an entire self-help trilogy on being a people pleaser, IT IS SO VERY HARD. I’m fairly certain that today I ignored someone, disappointed someone, or upset someone and I’ll basically obsess about it for oh, ever. I’m really good at that part.
I would suppose that the prudent business person hires someone to make decisions about banners and food brokers and ad space. And then said prudent business person has extra time to plot how to grow the business (and finish Season Three of Orange Is The New Black). But the thought of outsourcing our decision-making process makes my throat close up a little. Because let’s face it, Jeanne and I only excel when we have too much to do, too much to worry about, and too much to second-guess. What the heck would we do with all of our time if we weren’t doing those things?
Apparently, obsessive is the new prudent at PJP. Sounds about right.