Tuesday, January 10, 2023

On forming habits

Pat --- thanks for the most interesting comment yesterday about ambassadors versus staff versus free-lance educators. We are different! 

First -- I'm a freelance educator working with SVP Canada, the parent company for the PFAFF, Husqvarna Viking, and Singer brands. We do not get a salary but are "contract" people. To my knowledge, ambassadors do NOT get paid EVER but get the use of equipment or product. And then you have paid staff members. This scenario is probably the same for all industries. 

I do freelance work for others, but it's all sewing related! I write blog posts and design/write patterns, and I do a lot of teaching. As for a website -- yep -- I should have one, but I don't! Not enough time or skill. Yes -- I could hire someone, and then I have to update it. OK -- so it's a good idea. 

I'm currently teaching quilt classes at TWO stores in Canada, but since they are on Zoom, it doesn't really matter where you live. Those two stores are The Hobby Horse and Thimbles and Things. Get on their mailing lists, as that is how you learn about classes. I'm also teaching machine embroidery software at two stores, and again, you'll find more information by being on the mailing list of the stores. The stores are Stitch by Stitch in Kingston and Brampton Sew and Serge. The topics for each store are different. I'm teaching a software club privately that is focusing on the abilities of embroidery software and covers multiple brands, but I'm using mySewnet for my demos.  

There are some CLUBS that I'm running privately, and those were on my blog a while back. I'm at full capacity on those at the moment, and the way things are going, no one wants to drop out! But we're having a blast. 

Now back to your question about the ambassadors. YES -- SVP has ambassadors. You can check out the list of people and follow them on Social Media. And YES -- I agree -- we NEED to be posting more to beat the competition. The way most ambassador programs work is you need to apply, and that usually happens once a year. Then the company reviews the applications, selects the people, and sends them the equipment. 

Shoot --- I can't find the link to the ambassadors. I'll get that for tomorrow. But in the meantime, get connected to all the Social Media for your brand. Check out the very bottom of the Husqvarna Viking and PFAFF websites to see links to all their social media groups. There is so MUCH information out there it'll scare you! Get on their newsletters and the newsletter for mySewnet. mySewnet also has social media platforms! There's so much information!

As I've never been an ambassador, I'm not sure what the requirements are, but it would vary between companies. Each month/week, you must make X number of posts. Some ambassadors are better than others; of course, some already have a huge following, so their posts appear more frequently. 

To get more from your machine, check out Facebook and Youtube, as SVP has numerous US full-time educators who post some amazing tutorials and videos. Get in that loop, as the inspiration will blow you away. I believe they also do tutorials on mySewnet, with one coming next week. You'll find the event on the mySewnet Facebook page. 

So there are many social media connections for SVP -- you're just not connected to those people. Wow --- that was a lot to say about that! 

But again, ambassadors are SLAVE labor in a way. They do NOT get paid in cash, only in the equipment loan. But since most do it for love and having access to sewing and embroidery machines that they might be able to afford, they do it for FREE. 

I'm like you --- I LOVE my machines and wouldn't trade that large screen and the abilities for the world. Give me an EPIC 2 or an ICON 2, and I'm a very happy girl! 

Yesterday was Monday's sewing, and we had a great day! Hey -- any day spent sewing is a great day! Did I get much done? Well, yes and no. It doesn't look like it, but there are now EIGHT rows of 14 sewn together. The rows are together but not sewn to each other. 

Progress on the 150 Canadian Women quilt

So that is huge, and I must keep going as I have a deadline for this. But I also had to stop and get some photos ready for a class this weekend, and there are still homework assignments to finish. I'm realizing that I MUST clear one of the two surfaces in my office. I think I'll pick the table. I need a place for the assignments and other paperwork to rest, or it'll get lost. Hmm --- how am I going to clear that table quickly? It's garbage today! NO --- I can't just dump it, but I'll do something quickly. I need the space. 

Now I'm in the process of trying to find something that I've lost. Yep -- a book and a pattern that I NEED now. Where or where did I put them? 

However, I found several other things while looking for those two items. Remember that list of codes for my Conquerer challenges? Yep -- I found that paper, and I think everything is good. But at least I found it! 

And I found this. It's a small kit with precut shapes to do some hand stitching. 

A Sue Spargo kit

And I found all the thread I bought to use with it. 

Thread for the handwork kit

Sadly, there is ZERO time to even think about working on it. I must start these classes/clubs, and then maybe I'll have some downtime. I doubt it!

I also found this cute little monster that I embroidered a while back! So cute!

Mini monster

And I also found a container for my pens and the happiness book. It's not ideal, but it sits on my bedside table, and I'm happy with the arrangement. And OMG -- it's hilarious to go back and read the entries from the same day, but ten years ago. On January 9, 2012, I walked 11.2 KM on a hike with some friends, and I was EXHAUSTED at the end of the day. My quote, "I'm not used to that distance or pace." That is hilarious since I now average over 12 KM a day and think nothing of it! 

A container for my pens and the happiness book

And then, on January 9, 2013, my comment was about tidying up the sewing space. "There is no place to put the rest of the stuff." OK --- so that was also hilarious! I found room either by storing things better or getting rid of them! 

Yes -- I think I'm committed to writing daily in this book. It's fun and takes just a few minutes. Not sure what I'll do when traveling - I might just take the book and ONE pen. I'll see how it goes. It's really not that big. 

So I'm listening to that book on habits. Oh boy! I see why habits are hard to break or easy to keep, depending on how you look at them. Habits are formed because of rewards! I believe that almost all stores and marketing companies rely on HABITS to sell you their products! So when you answer those marketing surveys or put your name in for FREE Stuff, they collect data to determine your habits. What time did you place that order? Perhaps we must send e-mails about one hour before to trigger you to order more stuff? 

Oh yes --- these marketing companies are not stupid (for the most part), and mining data is HUGE. 

But I'm a very habitual person, and it's mostly for convenience, so I don't have to waste time thinking. I eat the same thing for breakfast and lunch EVERY DAY. Why? because it's easy to make, and it's not junk food, although my lunch could be slightly healthier (I could make soup instead of opening a can). When I go grocery shopping, I don't have to think about what to buy, and when I want to eat, I don't have to think about what am I going to eat. I know, and so I just make it. It's so easy. 

I eat a variety of snacks in the afternoon, but that snack is a REWARD for my walk. I can't eat the snack until I've gone for a walk! I hadn't thought about my habits that way, but almost all have a reward. The endorphins from the spin class and having a nice luxurious shower in the fancy locker room (even though we have showers in our house!) are a reward. Isn't that just the weirdest thing? 

If I could keep all my class material in one place, I wouldn't be looking for that pattern and book! Hence, that table needs to be cleared of crap, and it needs to be cleared TODAY! 

Keeping the cutting and sewing tables and ironing boards clear are also habits. The reward is starting the day with a nice clean surface. Who knew? 

Of course, there are bad habits. I can't think of any at the moment! Oh -- who am I kidding. I'm sure there are some! 

Here's one of the baskets currently sitting on the cutting table. It's the basket with all the pre-cut sashing for that red and white quilt. I randomly cut pieces, and I hope I have enough!

My basket of sashing

The book is called The Power of Habit, and it's an interesting read! Oh my -- I see another audiobook just came to my shelf. I had better listen more each day! 

Oh my -- I don't have time to write! I have a table to clear, girls that need their daily walk (a habit), sewing, more writing, and, well, there's no time to waste! 

Here's what you need to contemplate today. What habits do you have, and do you like them? What are the rewards for each of the habits you have? There's always a reward. Think hard! 

As I'm writing this, I think habits are one of the reasons I can get so much done in a day. I do so much of the same thing that I don't need to think about it -- I just do! 

Have a super day!!!



  1. Atomic Habits is a great book!

    Love the basket for the Happiness Project :-)

    1. I'm still on the wait list for Atomic Habits. I better get listening to my audiobooks or I'm going to be in trouble. It's hard when we're at retreat!

  2. Ordered the book, I'm very intrigued.

    1. Did you get The Power of Habit? I really liked it and quite eye opening about how the world works!

  3. the 150 quilt is look great. So happy to see it's almost completed.

    1. I'm also glad the 150 quilt is almost done. It now has a deadline so there's no more putting it off. Have a great day!