I have a lovely morning routine that gets me to work about 6:30, where I do something to acknowledge the start of the day, in the quiet before anyone else arrives. Some mornings it's a meditation, some it's Salutations to the Sun, some mornings I sing. Regardless, every morning I walk into the warehouse and greet the business as it appears there, which is stacks of product, sitting cool and ready after a night of quiet. The product is the physical reflection of our intention to participate in our world in a way that offers wellness.
Yesterday morning I had a powerful insight. We are poised on a new season of summer outdoor celebration for New Zealand. In the warehouse, there are thousands of beautifully crafted products waiting to be part of this. And all of a sudden, I could feel the stories that these products will tend. I could feel the families, the scraped knees, the BBQs, days at the beach, scrambling for the repellent as evening draws cool, the joy and needs of a life shared outdoors. I sang to the products in thanks, acknowledging the adventure ahead for them, and all the ways they will serve New Zealand outdoors.
And all of a sudden, after months of having trouble making the time to sit to write, I woke this morning and cleared the morning to just sit for a moment to write to you. For those of you who are new to this blog, I used to write a lot more. But as the business grew, that has decreased. In hindsight, we probably did not add enough support to acknowledge our growth. We are a family business that grows very carefully, self-funded, guaranteeing our business loans against our property. And so, like a frog in slowly warming water, I did not even understand how much I was changing and accommodating the growing needs of the business. My lists grew longer, response times extended, and my hours lengthened past what my mind, neck or eyes really wanted to do.
Last October we launched Goodbye OUCH Sun Balm, and in the same month, moved our business that had been home-based to a warehouse just a couple of hundred metres from the kids' school. It was a revelation. The stock that used to line a lounge and hallway in our home and a container and sleep out just outside the front door, well, it moved. But more than that, when I was home, I was home, not at workhomeworkhomeworkhome. The kitchen table is now where we eat, not desktabledesktabledesktable. It was good for all of us. It also allowed us to bring on our first part-time employees in August, which gives me a bit more space to do some of the things I love doing, like writing to you.
Nineteen years based in our home, and one year in a warehouse, equals.
Would you like to join me for a lovely photo journey over these 20 years? We start in a few days on @naturalgoodbye on Instagram and Facebook. It's a pleasure to play there, so suited to telling stories by images.
It's kind of hard to believe, like getting to a great viewpoint on a trail that wound through the trees so long you forgot there was a vista.
So, perhaps enough for now, because there's so much to unpack looking back at 20 years in business, and we have the most gorgeous reflections coming together.
I hope this November 1st finds you well, greeting the day as spring establishes itself here in New Zealand.
Kumara Tipu, Bex