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Direct Sales: It ain’t about the money, money, money…

I’m terrible with words — so I want to try and get this across as best that I can! I’m a “train of thought” writer — there’s never any good structure.. Bear with me!

It’s true that signing up with a Direct Sales company for you might just be about the money, but, as with several areas of our lives — money is really a terrible motivator. That’s not what life’s about, and it keeps you and your business stuck in a very shallow pool. It’s really important, if you’re going to consider direct selling, that you truly find your “why.” And honestly, stay away from any company that sits around making income claims in order to entice you. I promise — there’s just so much more to it than that.

When I signed on — I was bored. I’m a serial hobbyist. Everyone around me knows in the tons of things I’ve dabbled in — I just dabble, and move on. I assumed that signing up to sell this product would be the same thing. I’d try it for a bit — then I’d get bored!

I didn’t. Here’s the thing.. the money wasn’t great at first by any means — but no one can shake their fist at a couple hundred extra dollars a month. It’s not a living by any means — but hey, I was doing that in 10 or so hours a month. I might spend 4-5 hours working on sewing something that I could sell for $15-$30. So, it was at least a much better return on my time than anything I’d dabbled in before. So, I kept with it for a while at a very hobby-style pace. While I was “hobbying” along, I met several people who had actually began to make money at what we were doing… I don’t settle for “half way” so I figured, “Hey, if they can do it – so can I!” So, I asked them what they were doing and I COPIED EVERYTHING. Straight up COPIED IT. I knew what they were doing something that worked, I wasn’t going to invent the wheel — but my determination to get to that end goal was pretty fierce. Why? I just wanted it. Why not! I hated my job — and I see these people who don’t have to work, and can still provide for their families. Who doesn’t want that?

The thing is — I still wasn’t doing it really “for the money.” It’s just so amazing watching the personal transformation it actually takes to reach higher levels in direct sales. It’s not “who’s the better business person” or “who has the best charisma.” No — it’s about overall self improvement.  People want someone to watch and look up to.. I was seeing women in my company overcome their negative self images, their low self-esteem, their fears of failure. I wanted that.

I always knew that I wanted people to say amazing things about me when I died. Do you ever think about what people would say about you when you’re gone? Even if it’s just for the 5 minutes you leave the room — could anyone say something bad about you? My goal is to someday be able to answer that question with a resounding “NO.” I want to leave a legacy and I know the only way to do that is to learn how to serve others before serving yourself… Give more than I get. I’m not perfect, and I’m still learning — but the only times I’ve ever “grown” or “promoted” in my company is by making the choice to change. To stop being the same person I was before I started getting results. To stop being negative, to stop putting myself down so much, to stop wallowing in self-pity and to stop blaming anyone else for my problems. It’s funny how placing these kinds of attitudes into your business soon overtakes your entire person. But really, were those attitudes starting with my business or with myself? Positive attitudes get POSITIVE RESULTS. Being a sourpuss gets you crappy results. It’s win-win. No one wants to be around a sourpuss, and people can see one coming a mile away. I was done being sour. I was done being hateful toward myself, I was done putting myself down. I was absolutely, wholeheartedly, done letting fear in any area of my life win over faith. If I wanted results — they had to start from within.

Sure, with promotions comes money. But, that’s just a perk. What really came with each one of my promotions with my company? Confidence, regularly choosing faith over fear, self-appreciation, genuine happiness, value. While I have been able to stop working and stay home with my son — which before realizing the total change I was going through, was my biggest “why” for what I was doing — it’s become so much more than that.

I’ve slowly realized that I’M WORTH IT. I’m worth working my tail off to get to where I want to be. Because with every hour I put into my business, I’m improving myself, too. Why do I believe this is something extremely valuable to the direct selling industry? Because every day that I wake up, I’m choosing my paycheck. I’m choosing my value and I’m choosing who I’m going to be and what I’m going to do. The freedom of not working for someone else, though, also means you can have a crummy day if you have to… you can deal with a life crisis if you need to… But the positivity and the confidence that I personally know that I’ve gained through this experience helps me to deal with anything that comes my way in a completely renewed light.

Is your direct sales business struggling? Is it mirroring the feelings you have inside about yourself or about your abilities to succeed? You’re only ever going to succeed if you believe you can and believe you deserve it. People are attracted to confidence — and you won’t get that from anyone but yourself. You have to choose.


The Cost of Saving a Dollar

I know what it’s like having too much month at the end of your money. I’ve been there, and I’m still there sometimes. There are times though, when being frugal or “saving a dollar” will truly cost you more in the long run. If it doesn’t cost you, it costs someone else. There are many industries that this pertains to — any small or local business fits right under several of the following persuasions. We’re not going to cover everything — but I do want to give you some things to think about when you find out a friend of yours has began a “direct selling” business.

Direct selling businesses are not pyramid schemes, they’re not ponzi schemes, they’re not illegal. If the company is a member of the Direct Selling Association — they have very high standards of ethics. They’re genuine business opportunities and they’re real jobs. I will never know why your friends are selling a product or service, but whether they’re selling Scentsy Fragrance, Thirty-One Gifts, Premier Designs Jewelry, Visalus, or any other sort of person-to-person product–they’re worth supporting. 

As you all know, I am a direct seller — but we’re not going to talk about me. I’m not even going to tell you why you should buy my products over a store-brand product… and you know I’ve got an exhaustive list of reasons. This isn’t a product vs. product issue.

This is about voting with your dollar.

I can’t speak for all of the direct selling companies, and I truly encourage you to do some research of any companies your friends have signed on with to see where the values of the company lie — but I know that the company I work for, and several companies my friends work for have huge hearts. Yes, we’re going to assume they have hearts.. not the beating kind, but you know… hearts. Several of these companies (not necessarily mine specifically, and not necessarily all of them) have give back programs for several different non-profits and charities, many of them make it a point to help women get out of debt and others to find refuge from bad home situations… Several of them make it a point to give more than they take, they treat their consultants as individuals and not numbers… They help their consultants see their own worth and value — without being told what they’re worth by someone else. Every single direct sales company that I have friends participating in encourages self-improvement, positive attitude, personal development, and financial freedom.

Not a single person at your local big box corporation is going to miss your $15. You’re not creating jobs. You’re not supporting a cause. You’re not directly improving anyone’s life.

I don’t know the reasons why everyone chooses direct selling — but I do know that many companies have a low enough start up cost in order to improve the lives of the people who really work their new businesses. I know plenty of people in the industry who desperately appreciate your dollar. They’re the following kinds of people–several of which you know, and several of which I have on my own direct-selling team:

  • Retired men and women who cannot make ends meet on social security.
  • Single mothers and fathers who are working their tails off to support their families and doing everything they can to stay off of government assistance in a dual-income society.
  • College students who don’t want to end up like their parents or older siblings who are still suffocated by student loan debt and desire to pay for their educations outright.
  • People who hate Mondays, hate their jobs, hate being yelled at by their boss, and truly wish to be free.
  • Moms who are trying to earn enough supplemental income to be able to stay at home with their own children instead of having them raised by someone else.
  • Moms who are trying to earn enough to allow their husbands to find less demanding jobs.
  • Military wives who are trying to supplement their soldier’s income and support their families.
  • People who work full-time jobs and need a part-time job, just to keep from losing their homes, because they just don’t get paid enough — but can’t afford more time away from their families.
  • People who are just trying to pay off all of their student loan debt, medical debt, credit card debt, tax debt, any debt, and want to really be able to start living again.
  • People who just want a vacation once in a while!
  • People who are also just looking for a way to save a dollar…

No, you don’t have to buy everything your friends are selling — but if you’re able to, please do. Sure, you could buy something from Wal-Mart, Costco, or wherever, for less than you can from your friend — but where does that money go?

Now, some of you are thinking “Well, my friend only makes 25% commission on a $40 product that I can buy for $20 instead.” Just remember, that other $30 isn’t just going straight to the top, to the CEO.. Another 10% is probably going to the consultant above them… then another 10% is going to the consultant they signed up under, and so forth. You’re not only helping your friend — you’re helping the people who help them, too… You may just be helping your friend save up for her dream European vacation — but, you’re also helping her sponsor pay for her kid’s piano lessons — and you’re helping her sponsor’s sponsor pay for her mother to be in a nicer nursing home.  Your dollar just keeps going up to generally deserving people… That other 75% isn’t just getting lost, it’s not just lining a corporations pockets… It’s continuing the cycle of helping people achieve their dreams, improve their attitude, and change their lives.

Even if you switch from buying off-brand all of the time, to off-brand some of the time.. you’re helping someone. Every little bit counts.

I can’t speak for everyone, but I truly do appreciate your dollar. And I know you worked hard for it… I work hard for mine, too.

It's more than just my passion for what I sell. Here's the REAL reason for why I appreciate your support of my small business. #directselling #thegingerkid


Anyone who knows me, knows how horrible I am at following through with anything. Thankfully, those who love me like crazy have yet to be alienated by my constant changing directions — breaking necks and not in a good way!

The biggest reason I really wanted to start this blog was for accountability.

Are you reading this? Yes? Then, I need you. I need you to not only read what I write for curiosity’s sake  (FYI: I will never be a train wreck.) — I need you to use what I write here as a way to keep me on my toes. I’m so bad at following through — mostly out of feeling fairly alone in my efforts. Let me make sure to let you know FIRST, that I don’t feel alone because I am actually alone. I have so many people around me who love me like crazy — but they’ll be quick to tell you I hate asking for “help.” Of any sort.

Here two of the major themes that you’re going to probably see me fiddle around with, because I notoriously try and intervene in these areas of my life — but, again — I never follow through! Well, it’s your turn to make me follow through.

  • Getting Healthy! And I don’t mean I want you to chastise me for eating pizza, drinking too much coffee, etc… but I would like you to ask me sometimes “how it’s going.” But if I post a photo on Instagram of a dozen donuts — no judgement. I doubt I’ll be perfect, but I do need to maintain focus. I did mention “weight loss” as a goal — but I know it’s much more than the number on the scale.. It’s not a diet.. It’s a complete lifestyle change.
  • Homemaking. Grab your stones — you may want to throw them. (But, of course, you’re here, so I know you won’t!) I truly desire a more traditional “gender role.” Thankfully, I married a man who would never, ever ask that of me — but I feel as a way to show him I’m thankful for everything he does for our family, that I should step up to the plate more often to help out. I’m lazy — everyone knows it. That’s got to change. This one will be agonizing — but I hope that I can at least continually make steps forward, even if I never reach some sort of exemplified end goal. No, I don’t want to be a 1950′s housewife, and no I don’t expect myself to do all the housework — but again, I married someone who doesn’t expect that of me either… It’s a personal choice. I want to bake more, clean more, craft more, sew more, cook more, love more, serve more. This even includes documenting the day-to-day.. Keeping a loving record of my son’s accomplishments and milestones. Something I currently do not have.

So, hey! Thank you for reading this — but, realize now that you’re obligated. (See what I did there? Hook, line, and sinker!) I need your help with these things!

Is there anything I can help you with? I believe the “it takes a village” concept applies more than just to raising the chit’lins!

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Fresh Start!

Ermahgerd! Mah blerg is gern! Yep, my blog is gone.

I was running a mega-poorly updated blog at TheStainbrooks.com; however, I failed at the “moving to a new server” life task. So, I lost everything and decided to start over here — at thegingerkid.net. Yes, if you’ve been following my career as a serial hobbyist, then you recognized this blog domain from back when I had a cloth diaper and natural parenting shoppe. I do miss it — but it wasn’t in the cards for me at that point in life.

Stainbrooks-20Photo Credit: Dawn Schaffer Photography

While my store might be history — I couldn’t bear losing “the ginger kid.” The name was very special to me as my son was born with bright ginger hair, and I used to joke while I was pregnant that I hoped he wouldn’t come out with my hair color… and of course, as with all matters of “let’s hope the kid doesn’t get your…” — he did! And I loved it immediately.

What will we be doing here?

What do you get when you cross an elephant and a rhino?


Here’s my plan. We all know I’m a horrible blogger (even though I used to be an awesome one!), but as with several things in my life right now, I’m a work-in-progress! I really do find it incredible important to journal–yet I fail miserably at doing it. I haven’t recorded anything at all related to Everett growing up, or anything else for that matter — and I’m so afraid of the day that I forget everything and can’t even read about it later.. So, that has to change. Whether I write everything here or somewhere else — it has to change.

Here are some things that I’m in the middle of or gearing up for that you might find posts about as I continue:

  • Learning to be a stay-at-home-mom.
  • Losing weight.
  • Eating better.
  • Being a business owner.
  • Going to Hawaii.
  • Finding joy in the journey.

I’m horrible with words though — as many of you have probably learned through the years. I hope that you can see past all of that as I begin this new chapter and recognized the heart behind this entry and future entries.

Thank you for your support!

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