steve duross - craftsman. artisan. entrepreneur. musings on running and growing a small business

joy comes in the morning

whenever i need a little inspiration, all i have to do is climb the stairs and slide into my apron, pick up my raw materials and create. the production studio is always good for my soul. on the days i am working behind the chair, detailing a cut, chatting with the guys, it knocks me out. the energy i feel in that moment.. my world becomes about the flow. though i utilize these two worlds as a form of creative expression (and perhaps a bit of escape), in those two places there is a profound connection to the me who exists when i am alone. the best parts of me that don't have to be censored. the me without limits. this creative self brought me to the projects people now refer to as my "businesses". that i still have access to simplicity at my core brings me an enormous amount of joy. a fine accomplishment. my personal best.

surprisingly, working on the floor again in the store has re-ignited the fire of my inner entrepreneur. i feel at one with my original intentions. pure possibility. not dissimilar to the feeling of coming home, the shop floor is a place where i know for sure i belong. as i now center myself again in the comfort of what i left behind, i am feeling a sense of satisfaction. the store is just where i left it, eagerly awaiting my return, completely unexpected. buoyed by the fact that the store is the domain of sarah, i feel emboldened to focus on little projects that have been neglected. think of the store as a garden and me a gardener who is back from holiday. it's all there. with enough love and nurturing attention, it will be dazzling to behold once more.

as we approach the eleventh anniversary of duross & langel on 13th street, i cannot help but look behind me to see how far we've come. remembering the eleven years i've shared with sarah by my side. my business partner. my work wife. in spite of the fact that we have loved, laugh with and ultimately lost everyone around us, we persist because we are committed to duross & langel as a key element of our lives. we are blessed to be committed to one another as friends. there exists no shade between us. as i sit pecking out this paragraph, she sits across from me silently on her lap top. the day ended thirty-five minutes ago but here we are, in the quiet of the store, doing the things we don't have the time to do when the doors are unlocked. blissfully alone. together. and tonight i promise myself that whatever the future holds, i will cherish all that has happened, all that we have shared, and honor the choices of a future that has yet to be written.

the development of my skills as a small business person continue. saying goodbye to valued staff. saying hello to new hires. often the beginning is filled with promise. the ending of woe. personally i have reached a point where i no longer feel the need to build a family from my work life. this is, after all, a workplace. that people can come for a time and do their best work while attempting to figure out what comes next should be enough. and for me, now, it is. it takes a fair bit of time to realize the things we need, the things we don't, and what gets left along the way. whatever remains is meant to be.

tonight i am feeling a great many things. the ground beneath me shifted. but when one considers that life on this planet formed and reformed many times over through the process of shifting, i think that in the grand scheme of things... we're good. change is life. psalm 30 (my favorite) has been rattling around in my brain all day. anger is but for a moment, favor is for a lifetime. weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes in the morning. and so i close this paragraph knowing that whatever stresses the day might bring, or worries the night may hold, i can always count on the joy that comes as surely as the dawn.