Success ~ how are you stopping your own?

photo source

Do you ever feel you stall your own success?

I’m convinced I play this game on myself. I know roughly which direction I’d like to go, and know I can have it, but to take that next step is like walking off a cliff edge.

And then we start our excuses we mask as reasons. Boy do we ever have alot of those! While you’re rambling with your excuses to another, I suggest to sit back and really listen to yourself. Just be silent and listen to what you just said. All those words on why you can’t.


Know what I believe the real deal to be?


No one wants to intentionally fail. Or be rejected. Or be told your work or ideas aren’t good. We all want some kind of affirmation. It’s just the way we’re built. It validates us. And that’s why it’s so enjoyable to blog. We validate each other.

So.. what’s the next step then? Do you have a dream? I’d bet you do. It may be hazy at the moment, but everyone has a passion. There’s a reason you’re on earth and perhaps you haven’t truly found that reason yet. But no one will hand it to you on  a silver platter unless you yourself make the effort to seek it out.

Here are two fine examples of recent successes in blogland.

Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, is a stay at home mom of two toddlers. 

 MMS now has 2 retail locations for her amazing one of a kind creations and is showing us how she does it along the way. But she’s doing way more than simply showing us what we can do with our trinkets. She’s paving a road in which has your name on it. All that’s left to do is follow her lead.

settee at home

Did you see MMS’s recent post titled Musical Furniture? She had no idea, but that post was written for me the day I read it. As a furniture styler, Marian’s home is in a constant state of flux. What’s in on any given day…

settee in the store

… may very well be out the next. For sale.

I’ve been reluctant to let my creations go.

However, if MMS can do it, so can I, right?!?

I found MMS when she had 75 followers and knew that day that we had a new rock star among us. All she did was throw in that dash of passion and you have the perfect recipe for the makings of personal success.

It’s all about passion. And moving forward with it. Are you seeing it?

 The Lettered Cottage

Another success story I highly admire and follow is Kevin and Layla from The Lettered Cottage. I first became inspired by Layla when she did her first before and after for a friend. (I couldn’t locate the post)

I was moved and spellbound from that moment on. If this girl could load a truck full of ‘bad boy’ furniture (I remember emailing her and asking how she got the furniture from point A to point B herself!), find the makings for merry and bright from a thrift store, and then proceed in creating a magical atmosphere out of it for another, I knew there was hope for my own dreams to come true.


filming a pilot

From there, Layla and Kevin have teamed up and have accomplished all sorts of amazing feats over the years. I’m watching and learning with every single post of theirs. (thanks for the air nailer tute, Kevin!)

There are many more successes in blogland, however I believe I’ve made my point. It doesn’t matter where you start from at all. And it doesn’t even really matter on who you become. It just matters that you’re actually doing something about it. Because the ultimate joy’s in the ride there. 🙂

No time you say? Me neither. I’m a biz owner, home owner, (sole) parent, blogger (need I list more after that last one?!), decorator, and a creator with dreams of doing more. How? Impossible! Right?

Not if I hack at my goals a little each day. You see, I’ve been mentored by the best. My friend Dan’s philosophy is, work on your dreams even just 10 minutes a day if that’s all you have. Because those 10 minutes add up. And it’s way better than not doing anything at all.

I stumble alot when I think about what I want to do with all this creativity that lies within. I’ve been talking to MMS and supportive friends. They’ve held my hand while toting out advice and encouragement and have allowed me to whine and rejoice. They’ve been patient with me.

But there comes a time when you have to take that major leap of faith. In yourself.

There’s a sweet restaurant in town that I’d like to help pretty up. But that entails me emptying my house. And I was frightened to do that. But something helped me make the decision in the last couple of days.

It was Hilary’s kitchen over at Sweet As June.

These gorgeous photos helped me realize I can recreate again in my own home. Bring new design solutions into play. After viewing these photos, I felt it. I was ready to do new things for others, and test run some other unique creations for my own. My home is the test pit. 🙂

Inspiration of all kinds is everywhere you look! I’ve named 4 that inspire me just in this one post! And you’re the other 6,000 sources. In which I thank you!

For those of you that have read my story, all the pieces to the puzzle are fitting. There’s a reason I moved where I did and a reason a team of good Samaritans helped me fix up my broken house. (reno blog HERE) I’m right where I’m suppose to be. With the door wide open at the end of the room.

 And I also believe I was led to the net to write about where I’m heading, to help further inspire you yourself. Don’t watch anyone on the net with envy. Watch with wide eyed wonder and implement some of those moves in your own life. Watch and learn. And then do!

Over the next little while, things will be somewhat hopping for me. So you may see some ‘Blasts from the Past’ type posts here and there to fill in. I really REALLY need to be proactive and kick fear to the curb and just do it. And I can’t do that sitting at my desk wishing it to happen.

Stay tuned for changes all over town this round. It’s time to go cliff jumping! And I can’t wait to take you along for the ride. 🙂

Tell me about you. 

Do you stop your own success? Why do you think that is? What’s REALLY holding you back? What are you going to do about it?

Writing it out makes it real. Go on. You can do it. Tell us what your dreams are. And what’s stopping you. We’re all ears and would love to support you!

Facebook Pinterest Twitter Instagram RSS

Subscribe to projects!

Categories: Inspiration

72 thoughts on “Success ~ how are you stopping your own?

  1. Hi Donna, I totally agree with your thoughts, fear of failure used to stop me in my tracks but over the years I have learned that, that gets you nowhere. At the age of 52 I have recently embarked on a major sea change and made the radical decision to move from Australia to Iceland. I visited there in the summer of 2009 and fell in love with the landscape, after selling up everything in Australia I have just gained residency and relocated. I am sure there will be times that are tough but deep down I know that I have made the right decision…sometimes we just need to trust our instincts or inner voice. Let the journey begin!

  2. What a GREAT post! Fear is the mind killer, that is for sure. It stops us from doing so much in our lives. I embroider with thread and beads, miniature sizes, of flowers, birds, butterflies and sayings, and am going to put them for sale on my blog. I keep procrastinating though, as I work part time, garden, cook and bake from scratch and take care of our home. Taking that first step off the cliff is so very hard to do.

    Thank you so much for your inspiration. Wishing you well in all that you do.


  3. I have a draft post like this in my folder for weeks now. Guess what stopped me from publishing it. Fear!
    Now I can add the fear (although it is always already present anyway) that people will think I am a copy cat.
    Fear is stopping me big time, all over the place. Fear of failure, fear of success. Fear that I am in over my head or will be. Fear of indifference. You name it and I have the angst for it.
    Great post, as always.

  4. What a great post! I know you were writing this for yourself as well as for me and so many others. And it took a lot of courage to come out and say some of those things to yourself in public. Because, you know, many of your followers think that you ARE the rock star, fearless and oh so talented, and living our dreams. And that is all true, you are incredibly talented and courageous and so much more. Caring and a gifted communicator too.

    As for me, my excuses are legend. I don’t have the talent that other people have…I live in an ugly house and it depresses me…my kids are draining all my energy with all their drama and my DMIL is driving me nuts… my seasonal affective disorder overwhelms me… And on and on. But I am taking baby steps and have started making some changes to reclaim my dreams. Seriously, you have been an inspiration to me to take some of those first steps. I may not ever be a rock star, but I am going to keep trying to be who I want to be. Thanks!

  5. Wow Donna! This was the post that I needed at 6:30 AM today. There are many things that I have in this creative little head of mine, but I always come up with a reason it will not work??? I just told my husband that the problem is FEAR and the preception in my head of things that probably won’t happen.
    I told myself, when my son graduated that I would either go into Real Estate, decorating or go back and finish my degree. Well because of the economy (excuse), I chose to just go back to school and work part-time at our school. I know this does not sound like a wrong idea, but the part-time job has become my (ESCUSE) not to use my creativity. In the meanwhile my basement is stacked with tubs of STUFF (as my husband calls it) :O
    I have to do a business plan for my one class and it has really sparked my brain in what do to to get started on this “rollercoaster of life”. Let’s face it life is full of ups and downs and it is VERY important to have some one on the ride with you, that will tell you it is okay. I don’t really have that here in my small town and family is sometimes not enough?

    I did not mean to write so much, but I think you got the idea? I have really missed your blog it is is always inspiring.

    Thanks for your inspiration

  6. What a beautiful inspirational post. This is so true, why do we let this fear take hold in our lives? I keep trying to chip away at it myself. Can’t wait to see your future endeavors.

  7. Do you read minds too? Amazing. This post could have been written about me as well. My best pal and I have decided to open a booth at an antique mall but we’re dragging our feet a bit in getting it done. It’s a little scary and yes, we will be letting go of some things in our own homes. Thanks for writing this post. It spoke to me. Good luck in your new ventures and I can’t wait to see what you do and what new ideas you have in store!

  8. Thank you for posting this! I’ve be reading your blog for a while now, and although your style is a little bit different than mine, I love the cool ideas you share. Miss Mustard Seed is a new blog to me, but what she is doing with her work is just too cool. I have been hearing a tiny voice whispering in my head to take things a bit further. To reach a little higher. To dream a little bigger. It’s a tiny nudging from somewhere deep inside.I haven’t been sure yet exactly what it means and what I’m supposed to do with it and how it will all play out, but I’m keeping my mind open to possibilities and opportunities as they come. I feel like God’s putting a dream in my heart,or maybe awakening one that was already there, and he’s putting the plan into place. I’m just not sure yet what the plan is, but I’ll find out in due time.
    Good for you for taking the plunge! I’m excited to see where this will take you and wish you all the very best!

  9. Simply a wonderful post that I know so many of us appreciate! I don’t think I stop my own success, finally I’ve learned to just embrace my interests and go for it…but sometimes there are other forces as well. I hope you can stop by my post today and weigh on in the question I ask…does getting older limit opportunities, particularly for women? Thanks!

  10. Donna thanks for such an inspiring post. I know you will do well in whatever you decide to do. You have my support all the way.

    Now get to it and tell us what the heck it is… no more teasing… lol

    Saw this saying the other day and it seems so fitting for you…

    “Progress involves risk, you can’t steal second base and keep your foot on first”

    Good luck Donna, I wish you nothing but success… you will do great.

    Hugs, Deb

  11. I so needed this post this morning! Have been standing at the edge of one of those cliffs for awhile now…just paralyzed with fear. This past year has required so many leaps of faith that I’ve just been feeling pretty much “leapt out”. After a major relocation (due to my husband’s job loss), I decided to make a career change. I have finished the educational requirements to take my state real estate license exam and got the green light to take the exam a couple of weeks ago. But, I’m terrified of failing…and equally terrified of passing and then having to put it all into action! Your words were very inspirational to me this morning….thank you so much!

  12. Wow Donna, just what I needed to hear this morning! I’ve been taking baby steps when I really need to leap. I have all kinds of excuses. And every time I get a little brave, there’s that nagging voice in my head that says, “What are you thinking?” That’s when I usually take a few steps back. But I know in my heart that I really need to keep forging ahead. Thank you for the encouagement! … And sending good wishes to you as you take the next leap as well!

  13. Donna, You are so inspiring, and your post is so very true for me! I would LOVE to stay at home and sew and be craft all day long, but I have so much fear inthat I wouldn’t make enough money for my family, and I have all the benefits with my job, none from the hubbs, so that is what keeps me there. I am not sure how to make that change, so for now I participate in crafts shows, and have my ETSY shop. For now it works, it all keeps me very busy, but I love it, and enjoy being crafty when time allows. I do keep saying “someday” but with 3 kids at home, I think my “someday” will have to wait a little while! Uneless you have some ideas for me! 🙂 Thanks for my moring dose of inspiration!!

  14. Hi Donna! This is such a wonderful heartwarming post! I think you are amazing and whatever you put your mind and heart in will only lead you to much success!
    I’ve always thought I’m not good enough for so many things…It has stopped me from so many things. Blogging has really helped me loose that whole mentality! It’s wonderful!
    Take care

  15. I saw the post on Mustard Seed. She has a great talent and I don’t know how she parts with everything, but that’s her “thing”. It’s what she enjoys doing.

    I love creating, but not being forced to create. That’s why I don’t enjoy selling my art work and projects or commissioned projects…. been their done that.

    Decor Made Simple motivates me to be creative and share my creations. I have found my calling and enjoy it very much.

  16. Good post.

    Sometimes I’m a little wistful about the success of other bloggers, but the reality of my life is that I don’t want to be pulled in too many different directions, nor do I crave to have a crafting/decorating business like many bloggers do. I homeschool my two boys, which is a huge undertaking for me. I can’t do a million things and do it all well, so my personal choice and reality check is to dabble and live vicariously through bloggers with boundless energy and drive like you and Miss Mustard Seed. 🙂

  17. I saw the title of this post and HAD to come read it, well, skim it. What I HAVE to do right now is clean the cat boxes. But I will come back and read and click and enjoy. Thank you for sharing these inspirtional stories.

  18. So… here I am reading your post… thinking I need to light a fire under my _ _ _ and get going on my dreams. I have three small children and while the youngest is in preschool a few mornings a week I clean houses to get by. I can’t help but think when I am cleaning that damn it… I want to be decorating and designing the deck not swabbing the deck!!! But like you said I have a million excuses! And then I see my kitchen on your post… Funky Junk Donnas post!!! The kitchen my husband and I did on a shoestring budget(I think I will do a more detailed post on it now!)Be still my heart! You have been SUCH an inspiration to me and to think my little ol’ kitchen inspired you… well thank you for the push and the confidence to get moving. I wish I could give you a hug! 10 minutes a day… I think I can handle that! 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *