October 1, 2008

Well, I expected it to happen some time. For the first time in four years, I had to pay rent out of my pocket. The problem is that I really don’t have it there either.

When I opened the shop over four years ago, my rent was a little lower, and I was subletting half of the shop to my sister-in-law. During that first year, I paid the rent out of my pocket four times. The first two months, the shop was closed while we painted and generally improved the look of the place. I also had to wait until the Board of Health inspected the place and gave me a license. 

Since then, I have always managed to make rent, even after my sister-in-law moved out and I was paying the entire amount… until now. I understand that September is always a slow month, which does continue into October a bit. I have always been worried that I would not make rent during this time. But adding in the economic problems we are having, and it just did not happen. In fact, I barely made half of the rent amount. If it had not been for two out of town clients who were staying at a hotel down the street, a Reiki class, and a couple people wanting Reiki sessions, I would not have made what I did. For those sessions, I am very thankful. 

Sales have been down in the past several months. I am not even seeing regular customers as often as I was. When it costs $70 to fill one’s gas tank, healthcare does not enter into it at all. It just scares me, and it should. The bank I use (personally and corporately) was doing badly and got bought out the other day. I had not even realized something was going on. 

Sales has been slipping mostly due to the economy. Some of it is due to lack of advertising, or the proper advertising. Like I said, September is typically slow. I hope to have enough money in the bank to help me through this month. This year, business has been so bad that this did not happen. This month, I did only 13 sessions and one class. Looking at the previous year’s stats, I see that I did 18 sessions last year and brought in about $300 more. The previous year, I did 21 sessions and had one class which brought in twice as much as I did this year. In a good month, I do about 23 or more sessions and some Reiki students. It takes 20 sessions a month to make expenses.

I’m hoping things turn around soon. I have a session scheduled later today, so this month is off to a good start. But I need more.

I really do feel I am doing what I should be doing. I feel the calling to do this work. I just need to do more of it to survive. It keeps coming down to this point each year where I will be needing to lat my landlord know if I will be renewing my lease at the end of January. I will need to tell her by some time in December. The problem is that if I close the shop, I will let a lot of people down that depend on me. I will also have to find storage space for all the stuff here. the thought of cutting out expenses would help our overall situation, but as long as the company makes expenses it is workable. It is when that stops happening that having the shop becomes a liability. And I really don’t want to go back into the computer field, and really can’t just walk back into it without training. 

I don’t know. There is a whole lot of stuff going on in my head right now. Healing is what I need to do. What I need to do is find a way to heal the business.