Sunday, September 5, 2010

In the interest of general kindness.....

Every week, I usually receive no fewer than a dozen email requests from newer soapmakers, for info or help about how to start a soapmaking business/or make soap/or basically seeking general encouragement that yes... it can be done.  Due to my hectic schedule, it sometimes requires a day or two to get back to all, but I happily oblige, offer whatever personal experience I can share to help them out or point them in a direction to info that will help them.  Most askers act positively shocked that I even bother to help them!  I guess this amazes me.....and bothers me. 

Back when I first started making soap, the internet wasn't even born yet (Yikes!  Am I *dating myself" or what?  LOL!)  But cool yer heels there, those quick to think me *ancient*...that was only the early '90's. 
: Þ  But seriously, back then, there wasn't NEARLY the amount of info easily available NOW, especially via the internet!  I actually had to special-order my first soapmaking book from EUROPE, and when it arrived, all brown-paper-packaged, and six weeks later, I coveted that thing like it was GOLD!  Point being, I know what it's like to desperately seek info and find it hard or valuable to obtain.  So it comes easy for me to put myself in the place of *one needing to know* and feeling a pay-it-forward desire to help others out. 

Every one of us, ....yes, EVERY one of us....has something that we are excellent at!  Yes...E.X.C.E.L.L.E.N.T. at!  When you take the time (which is usually small) to help another out, it comes back to you threefold, via networking, contacts, good karma....and just good will.  Leaders are needed in every facet of every industry.  BE that leader.  Not just in experience, but in heart.

I have endeavored to conquor talents in fields other than soapmaking, all my life.  I can say from experience, when you find someone willing to help you out...it feels as though you have struck gold.  Now, I'm not talking about silver-platter-hand-outs of proprietary info here....I think we all recognize when someone is being too lazy to do the hard work of educating themself.  Specifically, because there IS so much free info for the taking online these days, I have to admit, I get annoyed and feel disrespected when people ask me silly questions like "How do I become a soapmaker?" It is quite likely, a request such as that will earn you a response from me, such as....."LEARN, like the rest of us do!" I mean seriously. ...have you not heard of Google?  Do you really expect me to outline an entire blueprint for you...in my free time?  If someone does not have the tenacity and work ethic to do some research from the git-go, and expect another to just give you that business plan,  there's no way they will make it as a business person.

But I've learned over the years to identify those looking for free hand-outs, and those either stuck at some crossroads, or needing much-needed encouragement.  Most I encounter just really want to hear a peer say..."You can do this, and it's worth all the hard work!  I will cheerlead for you."  I love helping these type people out.  I feel it's a gift that I can help them, and an obligation to give back......an homage to all who so generously helped me along the way.

I'm jus' saying......I would love to see this in all walks of life and endeavor.  I've come across industries where the accomplished or successful seem to covet their hard-earned info like it was the Holy Grail and only speak of it amongst their fellow accomplished peers, only hang together in tight little cliques, and merely look down upon up-and-comers as though they are a pesky nuisance, or view helping them as training their competition......people not even worth responding to.

I can't help but ponder if the very person you pass over helping might not one day be the person you most need info or help from yourself in some way!   So again.....I ask you to consider.....

Every one of us, ....yes, EVERY one of us....has something that we are excellent at! Yes...E.X.C.E.L.L.E.N.T. at! When you take the time (which is usually small) to help another out, it comes back to you threefold, via networking, contacts, good karma....and just good will. Leaders are needed in every facet of every industry. BE that leader. Not just in experience, but in heart.


You never know if the person asking you for help, might not actually be stellar in another area of expertise.  :)

Enjoy your weekend! 
~Carol

  
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