Revealing Struggles is Hard

The Dilemma of Transparency

I’ve made some recent posts about needing help. I can’t tell you how hard it is to reveal the struggles that I know many people are having this year. As a business owner you always want to build the perception that you have it all together; that business is wonderful, and you should do business with me because I have all the answers. It couldn’t be farther from the truth. You would think after nearly 25 years doing this business that I would have all the answers.

Our first issue. December 1995

What I’ve learned from life’s journey is exactly the opposite. Life is a journey and no matter how long I’m alive, I will never have all the answers. Here’s what I do believe. If you love what you do, chances are the money will follow, and for 25 years it has. What I’m learning now is that the power of focus is paramount. To stay the course even though it’s hard. To keep pressing into the difficulties until the answer reveals itself.

The last 8 months have been the biggest learning experience I’ve ever had. Who would have thought that the schools would shut down, that restaurants would close, and we’d all be wearing facemasks everywhere? I could give you a laundry list of all the reasons why business is slow but we’re all going through this, together. I think that community is more important now than ever before. The wild success of Facebook has proven this. People want to be heard, recognized, celebrated, and collaborate.

So, I mustered up all the courage I could find to admit to the world that The Northwest Horse Source is struggling. I think it’s easier to help people than businesses, so I knew this was a risk. We relate to people, not entities. I’m here to tell you that my identity is wrapped up in the Northwest Horse Source so if this fails, I fail. What I have to realize is that change is always inevitable, and we have to conform with the changes, or the business fails.

The hardest part of this is separating myself from the business and realize that we all learn through failure. I have created this magazine with zero experience in publishing and a fierce determination to do this. I love the magazine and can’t imagine doing anything else, but I do realize that if I am to continue doing the Northwest Horse Source, I need to make some changes. (Like not always referring to It as a magazine. It’s a website too!)

It starts with taking 100% responsibility. No one else is responsible for its success or failure. That’s on me. I need to listen to what readers and viewers are telling me. I need to be committed to the success of horse owners and equine related businesses. My success depends on how much I have helped or will help my colleagues, friends, viewers, readers and businesses that depend on my expertise to be successful.

Yes, we do need your help. The best way to help the NWHS is to let us help you be successful. So, I’m asking you to complete surveys, sign up for newsletters, donate to NWHS, read and share our content and make suggestions that will inspire you to continue reading and learning from the writers who have generously donated their time to impart their knowledge and experience. I am tremendously grateful for the readers, writers, businesses and team members who keep this vision alive. Thank you for letting me be a resource since 1995. I am humbled and grateful for the recent donations and subscriptions that will help us decide the next chapter for the Northwest Horse Source and learn what we can do better.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

One of my favorite covers

Karen Pickering, Publisher
The Northwest Horse Source LLC

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5 thoughts on “Revealing Struggles is Hard”

  1. George, I need to get your article posted. It was truly a great story of your journey. I’ll see if I can find it in my archives and get it posted. Thanks for being my friend.

  2. Karen, you are a very special lady with a very special publication in both electronic & print…both have a place in today’s marketing, but electronic form seems to be the most timely & cost effective for both your clients & for you right now…
    You have created a wonderful equine resource & legacy over the past 25 years… as you go, we will go! But, just don’t quit & don’t give up on your dreams for your horsey friends…we all need each other as we come thru this RESET! Our horses don’t quit on us, let’s not quit on them! Love ya & I’m praying for ya…when I can loosen up some real estate related funds I will be back advertising with everyone else. Blessings, Cath in Tacoma

  3. I want to say hang in there but words are fluff at this time. I have a paid subscription and enjoy getting it but I can read this on line if that saves a few nickels by not sending it to me. There are no simple answers, tho some groups would lead you to believe that because it won’t bother them to shut it all down. I pray for all struggling businesses.

  4. Miss Karen you have always been one of the finest people that i have enjoyed learning from and working with ,you have helped so many and with a great big heart ,and all i can do is thank you with all my heart and always have a big hug for you.


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