Tuesday, April 3, 2018

We Are Still Doing Great Stuff All The Way Around

I've always appreciated constructive criticism. In my line of work and as a writer, and most everything between, constructive criticism has been a valuable tool in making improvements, keeping me on my toes, and making me aware of things that weren't apparent to my naked eye. I welcome constructive criticism. And, as a former tutor and writing mentor, I've had to dole out my fair share of it. During that time, I always kept two things in mind. The first, open the conversation by highlighting a person's strengths and the positive stuff. The second, it's all in how you present it.

The end of last month, I received an email that was inundated with criticism. I've tried several times to add the word "constructive" before using "criticism" but I simply can't. While I appreciated the sender's candid honesty, the email teetered on the line of being rude and accusatory. And, more than likely, it had a lot to do with the changes we made back in January.

"There was a time when I loved and admired the both of you. Now, not so much. You stopped selling your biscuits. You don't do events any longer. You no longer make raffle baskets for fundraising events. Instead, you post recipes for homemade dog treats, blog, create DIY Dog Mom Projects, and post a bunch of photos.

Why did you stop doing great things? I know a lot of people involved with rescue and their lives have changed, but you don't see them dropping out of the race. 

I'm disappointed. Apparently, you're not as great as I thought you were."

I have thick skin and I can attribute that to my career for the past 12 years and beyond, and along with being a writer.

Sure, I could feel the digs, but I didn't take the email to heart.

Here was my reply...

"Thank you for reaching out and extending your honest opinion. While I appreciate your forthright thoughts, there seem to be a few misunderstandings. 

Yes, we made the decision to stop selling our biscuits to the public. However, over a year prior to making that decision, we decided to share the recipe for our Bodacious Biscuit Love Peanut Butter Dog Treats. In addition, we also shared the homemade dog treat recipes that we've created.

In the 4+ years that we did sell our biscuits to the public, we used all of that money to purchase ingredients, supplies, and to cover shipping costs so we could donate our biscuits to local animal shelters, rescue pups, and pet parents in need. Throughout this entire time, we never made enough money to cover the cost. In other words, we ran out of pocket the entire time.

Also, during that time, our family got bigger. And by "family" I mean the amount of rescue furry kids we adopted. As of now, we have FIVE. With each furry kid that joined our family, our life changed. Aside from that, our work life altered. 

What all of that translates to is that we had to make some serious changes. We needed to better utilize our time and funds. Those changes transitioned into focusing on different areas. That includes, but is not limited to, providing recipes that we created for homemade dog treats, offering inspiration to create easy and inexpensive DIY Dog Mom Projects, creating DIY Dog Mom Projects to sell, inspiring pet parents to make homemade meals and treats, and continuing our mission to provide Bodacious Care Packages for pet parents in need.

Yes, we're still doing great stuff. Yes, we're still donating much-needed items to our local animal shelters and pet parents in need. Yes, we're more than happy to donate Bodacious Raffle Baskets or handcrafted items for fundraising events. When we're able to, we participate in fundraising events. 

More so, our current family includes FIVE rescue furry kids whom we've adopted over the past 5 1/2 years. The 2 family home that we live in has a total of EIGHT rescue furry kids. In our eyes, that's awesome. 

If people have an issue with what we used to do versus what we do now, fine. But, in MY honest opinion, a lot of it has to do with the boundaries we've set. As the saying goes, 'The only people who get upset about you setting boundaries are the ones who were benefitting from you having none.'

We're still doing great stuff all the way around. And, we will continue to do so."

That. Is. All.

For now.

Our Bodacious Dog Mom Life story and mission will continue...

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