Beyond No: My Consigning Lessons

Beyond No: My Consigning Lessons

I was prepared for rejection. It wasn’t the first time that I’d been to this consignment shop and I knew it wouldn’t be the last. I loved the goods the store housed, their pricing methods, and the energy of the place—ever changing, always fresh with new items.

If something caught your eye, you better buy it since it may not be there on your next visit.

However, the consigning process was a bit stressful. Appointments, booked weeks in advance, were for a finite period of time. When it was your turn, you better be ready.

My consigning companion, Wanda, and I had become experts at wrapping items just tight enough for safe transport. I often felt like I had the 60 Minutes stopwatch ticking over my head as we frantically unwrapped each item to keep pace with the review. More than once, we ran out of time and had to come back for another appointment.

Although everyone who helped us was friendly, upbeat, and pleasant, make no mistake: efficiency was king.

Discerning eyes saw clearly what had value. Skilled hands touched each item, keeping some and handing others back. The process was precise and methodical.

Yet, the rationale remained a secret. I was always surprised.

Some things were taken that I thought would be rejected. Others were rejected that I thought they would take. The method of selection became a mystery.

How did they decide what to keep? Or what had no value? Governed by the ticks of that imaginary clock in my head, I dared not ask. They offered little commentary. There simply wasn’t time.

Until last week.

Two new people greeted us, thanked us for coming, and began the customary process. They inspected each item, kept it or handed it back to me, and then, shock of all shocks, they told us why.

I clung to each comment.

“We don’t normally take candlesticks, but these are unique. They have an art deco vibe.”

“A set of four plates sells best,” one woman said as she handed back my set of three.

“We usually need at least a pair of mugs. But this one is unique and has a certain charm, so we’ll keep it.”

I smiled at her obvious delight at the find, but then realized my mind’s ticking clock was not controlling our pace.

“Are we okay on time?” I said glancing at the clock on the wall. “I don’t want to ruin your schedule.”

“Oh, no worries. I’ve spread out the appointments. It’s less hectic for me.”

“Me, too! What a great idea.” I replied, noticing my own shift in mood. I caught myself enjoying the process.


I wasn’t just being rejected; I was also becoming informed.

After a few more rounds of review, Wanda and I gathered our rejections, now fully understood, and left.

“That was fun this time, wasn’t it?”

Wanda agreed.

I think we were both surprised at our good moods, so much so that we took extra time browsing around the store on our way out. (And yes, I bought a couple of things.)

I felt lighter, happier, better educated, and even more empowered by my new knowledge to plunder my home for more treasures to bring in–all because of the decision someone else made to change the pace of our time together.

Then I began to wonder:

How does my pace affect others?

How does my pace affect others?

Can I change it up to make others feel more comfortable, more informed, or more a part of the situation? I’m not sure, but I’m going to try. When I have the chance to manage that ticking clock, I will try to do it.

How about you? Have you experienced someone else’s change of pace that benefited you? Or have you changed your pace and noticed a difference in others? Tell me about it. I’d love to know.

Pace. Progress. Perspective. That’s what I’m after this year!

And on we go.

My best – always,

Becky  (Nana B)

P.S. Thanks for your downsizing advice. You are so wise! And, I loved your New Year’s themes. Let me know if I missed yours. I’m going to keep adding to it this year. Inspiring, right? Let’s go!

Action Courage Create Love Better Patience Willingness Make a difference Clarity Prosperity Joy Brave Mindful