When people find out I design jewelry, I inevitably receive a lot of well-intentioned advice on trending designs, website suggestions and how I could sell more if I mass produced my designs or lowered the prices.
Learning to quiet their voices so I could hear my own has taken time and practice.
During moments of self-doubt, I veered away from my own path and tried designs based on what others found popular or trendy, looked at jewelry websites that were 'successful' and found them a poor fit for my own vision.
The harder I tried to fit my jewelry to someone else's vision, the more miserable I became and the harder it was to create beautiful designs. My heart and soul just wasn't in it.
I had to remind myself that I started making jewelry, because I loved the creative, artistic process that meant each design was unique. Discovering new rocks, playing at my workbench and new design challenges keep me both grounded in the forging of those elements and fulfilled: a place and a purpose that honestly fills my soul and gives me incredible joy.
When we follow our own path, our personal vision or passion, we acknowledge and honor our right to be happy and to know what is truly best for us; the right to map our own direction.