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Susan Parnaby

I know what I feel called to do and I have wandered around for years wondered how to actually get going with that. In terms of offline activities setting up Safe Haven Crafts was a big breakthrough for me. It helped finally being part of a supportive community. For the previous 8 years I had said I would like to do this and I think it would fit in with your aims and objectives as well will you help me. I then watched fear overwhelm them as they said we cannot do this because it might not work. Their fear actually put some considerable obstacles in my path so instead of helping me they added to the battle of getting things done. In the end I tried doing things bymself but that did not work well either.

Fast forwards to 1st Sunday in Advent 2015 i.e. nearly 2 years ago now. I had moved home to be closer to my family in January 2015 and was beginning to find my feet in Wales, after living in England until then. Myself and one of my new friends bounced ideas off each other then drew someone else in and by Christmas we had the outline idea in place and a supportive community around us. Totally different experience.

Finally I had a prototype in place. Like Sean is finding setting up and running a protptype tells you a lot about yourself and the market you are operating in. This summer I wrote a book that I wished I had been able to read 30 years earlier. The message behind it is we have done this and overcome these obstacles so why are you sitting there doing nothing. It also includes some of the things that we have learnt on our journey and a chapter on craft ideas that can be used even with severely disabled people.

Then I got stuck. I got as far as getting a proof copy from Amazon Create Space. Now the problem has become how do you launch it. There are all these complicated systems with many parts that people use these days to propel books into a place where they can be seen. How on earth do I do all of that, or even just a fraction of it? I have asked a couple of people for support but don’t seem to have the knack of getting influencers to get on board. I have moved out of the area where the supportive community that helped when starting Safe Haven can help me. It is not that they don’t want to be supportive but that they can’t move onto that new stage with me because it is beyond their experience.

It is not the first time when I have tried to do something like this. You can see my first attempt at no sales, no reviews no endorsements just a lonely book sitting on a shelf. So a waste of time and effort. It is a case of once bitten twice shy.

Then there is the online side of what I am trying to do. Loads of fear and loads of challenges here some of them quite unexpected. This time last year I tried putting together an online summit. Yes scared witless but I was having a go. Then I lost my denture. It only covered on tooth but someone close to me really hates seeing me without it in and that created a challenge for me. The obvious thing was get it replaced. That was the start of an amazing 8 month saga that involved 2 dentists and working my way through two different complaints procedures. Getting a replacement should have taken about a month with fittings etc but it took over six months as they could not make the first one fit so I went to a different dentist and started again. There were loads of letters and phone calls as everything that could go wrong did, even when people were trying hard to do the right thing. If there had been some kind of muddler who was trying to make thing go wrong I cannot see how much more they could have done to drag out this saga.

Problem is as I have worked my way through all Sean’s trainings in an attempt to work out what to do next I cannot escape the idea of having a membership site and launching it with a summit. So I went back to The COB Club and realised that all that needed was a tweak or two and the freebie setting up better. I thought it would be a good idea doing some sample content before completing the sales page just to make sure it was set up. That is when procrastination set in aka following the path of least resistence. The least resistence has so far included

  • painting the smallest room in the house
  • starting to crochet some scarves for Christmas presents as that is as far as my budget will stretch
  • cleaning the house to try and pacify my mum who thinks that I should spend a lot less time playing computers and a lot more time playing house
  • watching videos to get ideas about what content to create and how to create it

The excuse I have used for doing things around the house is that it will make it easier to set up the jewelery I have stacked in boxes on the table and invite people around to come and buy it. I have been procrastinating on handing out the invitations for that as well.

In terms of isolation it has not been that bad a week this week. I was at a meeting on Monday night discussing ideas for the upcoming 150th anniversary of our church building. Tuesday I was at Safe Haven. Wednesday mum was here “encouraging” me on Wednesday morning and last night I went to the annual public meeting of the local council where they aim to engage with the local community. This time I got talking to someone about Safe Haven and after a few minutes she adjusted her badge and I realised that she was just the right council official to talk to about it. That was amazing! Thursday (tonight) it is Welsh class. Friday (tomorrow)I am supposed to be helping with the toddler group at church. Saturday it is the last of a series of half day courses I joined in an effort to promote God’s Lily but that I have not been able to gain much of a harvest from. Amazingly I will have seen a living person every day this week. It is not unknown (although admittedly rare) for me to come home from church on a Sunday night and not go out or see anyone until Sunday morning. It only happens when the schools are on holiday and things quieten down. It is what happens when you live on your own and you don’t have a job.

Susan hiding in North Wales

God's Lily is "a voice for those frustrated by the slow progress towards a fair society where the needs of the weakest are met in a way that it strengthens them rather than weakens them further" . If that includes you then hop on over and have a look around. If you like what you see it would be a good idea to sign up to receive our blog broadcasts. Oh and you will get a couple of pdf files that explain the what and why behind the site when

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