Trust Your Gut
When I began my business there was one thing that I tried to make sure I kept clear at all time — what I knew, and what I didn’t. There was a lot I knew, having been in and around a lot of businesses over the years. My prior career path had endowed me with tons of knowledge and expertise on everything from marketing and public relations to business development, sales and strategy.
There also was an enormous amount I didn’t know. There were some operational bits that were mysteries to me, but mostly as I was moving from the world of tech and digital bits and bytes to the very real world of brick and mortar, there were all kinds of things around the physicality of the business that were entirely new to me. Construction wasn’t all that unfamiliar. I am, after all, the daughter of an architect who spent more than a little time growing up on various and sundry construction sites. Some of my most fond childhood memories are of going to my dad’s office and sitting in the corner while he worked. I had Tinker Toys, crayons and paper but mostly I had this super cool array of drafting tools and pencils that my dad would take from a nearby drafting table and let me play.
When it came time to prepare for building The Hydrant Club I did tons of research. I devoured and absorbed volumes of information. Then I hunted around and found folks with expertise in a bunch of areas and entrusted a lot of things to them. I had gathered an amazing group of people, each of whom was quite talented in their respective fields. Here’s the glitch, none of them had ever done anything even remotely close to the kind of project on which we were embarking together. So in many ways, while they were certainly more knowlegeable in things like landscaping and such than I, the truth is that I was no less savvy about what would work and what wouldn’t than they were.
But I trusted.
Over the years an array of things have started to come unraveled — things that I knew at a gut level weren’t right when we did them. Things like certain kinds of landscape lighting that I knew wouldn’t work over time, certain materials we used that I just knew weren’t going to work long term, and they haven’t. My lesson? No matter what, if my gut tells me something isn’t right, trust that instinct, and push push push until a better choice is made.
The last five years have been an amazing exercise in learning to trust myself, to rely on that quiet inner voice that only can be heard when one gets still enough to hear it. That inner voice that speaks so softly and tugs on your brain … more like tickles it, really. Learning to listen to that voice and lean in to it takes practice, at least it has for me. Not sure whether that’s a socialized thing or just part of who I am. Probably both.
There’s a great sense of satisfaction in facing this down, and even more pride in seeing things that I know to be true, come to life and thrive because of the decisions that I make.
Today’s Gracious Gratitude. I am grateful for:
- Deciding to walk from home to work and getting to see some things I normally wouldn’t have noticed
- Doing a good deed and not getting caught
- Cleaning cabinets … mostly how they look when I’m done
- Watching Harlow decide that she wants to go outside and then laugh as she opens the sliding screen door on her own and ambles out
- The amazingly kind people in my life who continue to hold space for me to grieve and show up for me
- When I choose to edit something I’m about to write because the “honesty” was really only lightly polished, childishly passive-aggressive commentary
- Coming to the realization that when I get out of my own way amazing things happen
- Roses that fight against heat to blossom
- Digging in dirt
- Standing in my garden barefoot watering my plants