#1,715 Light Fills Up the Darkness.

I’ve been grappling with a tough situation at work. I got my feelings hurt pretty badly. For the first time in my short life, a client said things to me in an email that you only hear in an R rated movie… And that stings. A day like that makes you feel like you’re not good at your job. And when you’re self-employed like I am, that makes you feel like maybe you aren’t worth very much in general. I hate that it feels that way—but I invented my little business, so when my work gets sucker punched, I feel it deep in my bones. Worse still, no matter my efforts to diffuse the situation, to apologize, to fix the problem the best way I knew how (even though the problem was out of my hands), I was left with my very first ever nasty review on the biggest wedding ratings site. I know these are growing pains. As your clientele expands, the greater the odds of one of them being unhappy. In a sea of awards and 5 star reviews, this is, of course the only review I can see in my mind’s eye now.

This is proof positive that life isn’t all sunshine and rainbows all the time here. See? I told you!
But then.
But then.
Oh a whim, I decided to contact past brides and ask if they might go and leave reviews of their own. I’ve never considered it an important part of my business, but now that it was on my mind—why not? I was ready for whatever criticism they might have, and was hoping to find some goodness that would smooth over this rough patch. 
I was completely overwhelmed by the kindness of my past clients, many of them passing acquaintances for the brief time we shared working on a creative endeavour of the heart, and the deeply personal messages they left for the world to see… They’re a comfort to me in ways these good people can’t fathom.

I feel rejuvenated by their kindness. And I feel a sense of urgency to compliment anyone I meet who is doing a good job. Affirmation is so powerful. You never know when a sincerely kind remark might change someone’s day. 
It’s like Ben said—if you think of something nice about someone, you should always say it to them. No matter what. Will you commit to doing that with me? Let’s do it. Let’s be creepy and kind and not even care if it’s awkward.


Wednesday, August 27th, 2014

Daily Journal

20 thoughts on “#1,715 Light Fills Up the Darkness.

  1. I love reading your blog! It's one of the first I check every morning. You're so positive and I love it! (you know just to start the creepy kindness!) 🙂

    • Meegan!! THANK YOU! 😀 You're so generous for speaking out with kindess to a stranger like me. We've started something now. I hope. Ha.

  2. A sincerely kind remark ALWAYS changes somebody's day. I try to do that too — knowing how valuable those compliments are — but never do enough. I hope all your readers soak in this great sermon from your blog today!

  3. Don't let that bad review keep you down (I got curious and Googled, so I read it). I think the lady has some issues of her own, but that's neither here nor there. Erin, I'm still convinced that when/if I get married, I'm definitely going to be doing my very best to convince my wannabe-hubby to let us use your services. That's not out of kindness, that's out of "I want these invitations for my own!".
    Have a wonderful day!

  4. Hurting people hurt others. It's a fact. And in this day and age of hiding behind a keyboard and making it type things that people don't have the guts to say to our face, it makes anything easier to say. Be strong. Swim in your own lane. Don't read the reviews anymore and pay attention to your revenue, which is factual and not based on emotions (of some rude individual who probably is never happy with anything OR has never worked a job of any sort). – – Jen

  5. Oh, also! Where attention goes, energy flows. What you put energy into gets bigger. Keep her small–focus on what you want more of. -Jen

  6. I kinda want to be you when I grow up (there's the creepy part you asked for, ha!) negative review and all. You seem very passionate (in all aspects of your life: Ben, Chevy and Baker, family, friends, work, etc) and when you are that passionate it's sometimes hard to hear the negative because it really does rock you to the core….but you my friend handled it with grace. That's not something that every one can do! I'm proud of you for sticking up for yourself and your business all the while trying to help fix the situation.

  7. First – I am sorry you had your feelings hurt. I am a sensitive person too and it would have hurt my feelers to have received the email as well.

    You are such a bright spot in this world. Yours is the very first blog I check on a daily basis and it always encourages me to be more faithful, love my honey more, and see the amazing blessings I have been gifted. Chin up, buttercup! You are a blessing.

    Also, I agree with you – share love and kindness and use your powers for good, not evil.

    Talia 🙂

  8. Oh, Erin! Could you design a postcard for us to use for that very purpose? Something that you could put a stamp on in advance and then when you see someone doing something great you would be ready to jot a note down and pop it in the mail to them?

    These wonderful recommendations for Lucky Luxe were a joy to read. And let's remember to love that person who wrote a bad review. If someone could lash out at you — they must be in a very dark place and therefore be in need our love. You are nothing but pure love to everyone who is inspired by your blog and life story! Thank you, Erin!

    Michele Jensen

    • Michele! That's a wonderful idea! Maybe I'll make a whole series of little postcards for various non-occasions like "you're doing a good job!"… Thank you for this, friend!

    • So Excited !! I didn't think I explained it very well, but you see exactly what I mean! You are awesome!


  9. So beautifully written– and such a course-altering message. Thank you for so consistenly reminding us all to make something good… –lisa

  10. I've started to read your blog daily and get such a positive/happy feeling from it. I can only imagine that your a gem to work with through Luky Luxe. It's unfortunate you had to deal with such negativity, but you are handling it wonderfully. I think the feedback is pretty crucial to businesses these days. I know that when I want to find out about a company/business that I haven't used before I google it first to see what reviews have been left. I think you did a great thing by contacting your past customers. The fact they are 99.9% positive is a testament to you and your business.
    I'm not sure any of that is creepy, but one thing I have been doing is researching the great pyrenees breed since reading your blog. You speak so highly of the breed and their personalty and temperment. It's fun to see/read. Now I just need a house with a yard and fence. Ha.

    • Oh Brandi you should really get a pyr pup! They're just the must low-key cuddly dogs in the world. They do best outside where they can roam around and shed like crazy, though. I've got friends who keep them indoors but I'm not that brave!

  11. I just had to join the chorus, you most certainly have the secret sauce to not only brighten so many people's day via your blog but also create such remarkable, one of a kind invitations! I'm sure you do not recall, but I first commented on one of your St. Augustine posts stating that my fiancé were relocating to that area (ponte vedra, just a few miles north). Once we get things all settled I look forward to contacting you and finding some way to make your gorgeous pieces a part of our wedding! Don't let one negative nancy rain on your parade !

  12. Your blog is such a bright happy place! I love your zest for every single thing in your life. The world is made better and brighter by people like you. Keep shining brightly!

  13. Keep your chin up! I know as a designer we take our creative work very, very seriously and it always stings deep inside when someone is unhappy with what you have done. On the business side of things, she should have read and known the contract. Proofing is a big, big deal. It's not your job to baby step her through that process. I mean you're not going to ask, 'are you sure, are you 100% sure sure? Have you really, super closely looked everything over?". No. She saw the proof, she approved the proof as is, you printed with approval. Done.

    • Haha! I wondered how many people would google till they found it! So thankful for your encouragement. I mean… Right?! Proof, people! PREACH!

    • Piqued my designer curiosity! And I had pretty much a 98% guess of what they were probably complaining about – sure enough.
      At least you probably don't have to hear "the logo isn't big enough" all the dang time. 😉

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