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Dave Salkin: Stay Sane

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STAY SANE

Keep yourself mentally, physically and spiritually healthy.

BY DAVE SALKIN

Published in the September 2014 issue

Sure, you love your jewelry career. You eat, drink, think and breathe it. But guess what? There’s life outside your store.

You can be as passionate about your store as you are about anything else in your life, but if it’s all you do … how long can you last before you burn out?

I’ve been in the jewelry business since I could see over the top of a counter. I’m 48. I was maybe 13 when I started “tinkering” with soldering. Turns out, I’m creative and I liked making things with my hands. Fast forward a few decades, and I graduated Rutgers, earned a Master Graduate Gemologist degree (GIA & IJO) and own the store with my brother.

Do I love what I do? Most of the time. There was that day when Mrs. Gotrocks told me what a great customer she is, because she got her battery changed here nine years ago and was very disappointed that I was going to charge her $10 for another one.

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Moments like that, I’d rather be at the dentist, but generally speaking, I love what I do for a myriad of reasons. Here are a quick few:

Dave Salkin: Stay SaneI’m way too stubborn to work for anyone else after being my own boss for almost 30 years. (Plus, I get to pick the music.)

Dave Salkin: Stay SaneI get to handle beautiful diamonds and jewelry, some of which truly is artwork.

Dave Salkin: Stay SaneMany of my customers are awesome people, and I get to be a part of their biggest occasions. I often wonder how many “wow” moments happen on Christmas morning because of us. I love that!

So let me ask you: How do you keep sane, working with the public every day, year after year?

Personally, I murder dozens, hundreds, maybe even thousands of people. Heck, sometimes the violence scares even me.

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I should clarify. It’s only on paper. I’ve written a dozen novels, seven of which are published, and I’m excited about my eighth coming out this year. My first hard-cover will be released this month, and it’s got synthetic diamonds, the Russian mob, the FBI — everything you need for a thriller.

Oh, and I’m also the mayor of Freehold Township. Sometimes I can’t believe folks read my books and feel safe voting for me, but this is year 20 of being an elected official, so I guess I’m doing something right. I also belong to several volunteer organizations like the Philip Reynolds Detachment of the Marine Corps League and the Veteran’s Community Alliance.

You starting to get the picture? I like being really busy — but not just with my store. I’m pretty sure if I devoted all of this energy to just my store, I would have been burnt out 15 years ago. Let’s face it, the public wears you down.

My point is this: Keep yourself mentally, physically and spiritually healthy. We work to live, not live to work. And no matter how much you love your store, you need other interests. The more you have to talk about, the more connections you have to your customers. It’s good retail, but it’s also good mental health! The bottom line: Make time for yourself! Whoever has the most fun wins. I am currently in first place.

David “Diamond Dave” Salkin is co-owner of Salkin’s Jewel Case in Freehold, NJ and author of several novels, including his most recent, Deep Black Sea. See more at davidmsalkin.com.

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SPONSORED VIDEO

Wilkerson Testimonials

If It’s Time to Consolidate, It’s Time to Call Wilkerson

When Tom Moses decided to close one of the two Moses Jewelers stores in western Pennsylvania, it was time to call in the experts. After reviewing two candidates, Moses, a co-owner of the 72 year-old business, decided to go with Wilkerson. The sale went better than expected. Concerned about running it during the pandemic, Moses says it might have helped the sale. “People wanted to get out, so there was pent-up demand,” he says. “Folks were not traveling so there was disposable income, and we don’t recall a single client commenting to us, feeling uncomfortable. It was busy in here!” And perhaps most importantly, Wilkerson was easy to deal with, he says, and Susan, their personal Wilkerson consultant, was knowledgeable, organized and “really good.” Now, the company can focus on their remaining location — without the hassle of carrying over merchandise that either wouldn’t fit or hadn’t sold. “The decision to hire Wilkerson was a good one,” says Moses.

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Commentary: The Business

Dave Salkin: Stay Sane

Published

on

STAY SANE

Keep yourself mentally, physically and spiritually healthy.

BY DAVE SALKIN

Published in the September 2014 issue

Sure, you love your jewelry career. You eat, drink, think and breathe it. But guess what? There’s life outside your store.

You can be as passionate about your store as you are about anything else in your life, but if it’s all you do … how long can you last before you burn out?

I’ve been in the jewelry business since I could see over the top of a counter. I’m 48. I was maybe 13 when I started “tinkering” with soldering. Turns out, I’m creative and I liked making things with my hands. Fast forward a few decades, and I graduated Rutgers, earned a Master Graduate Gemologist degree (GIA & IJO) and own the store with my brother.

Advertisement

Do I love what I do? Most of the time. There was that day when Mrs. Gotrocks told me what a great customer she is, because she got her battery changed here nine years ago and was very disappointed that I was going to charge her $10 for another one.

Moments like that, I’d rather be at the dentist, but generally speaking, I love what I do for a myriad of reasons. Here are a quick few:

Dave Salkin: Stay SaneI’m way too stubborn to work for anyone else after being my own boss for almost 30 years. (Plus, I get to pick the music.)

Dave Salkin: Stay SaneI get to handle beautiful diamonds and jewelry, some of which truly is artwork.

Dave Salkin: Stay SaneMany of my customers are awesome people, and I get to be a part of their biggest occasions. I often wonder how many “wow” moments happen on Christmas morning because of us. I love that!

So let me ask you: How do you keep sane, working with the public every day, year after year?

Advertisement

Personally, I murder dozens, hundreds, maybe even thousands of people. Heck, sometimes the violence scares even me.

I should clarify. It’s only on paper. I’ve written a dozen novels, seven of which are published, and I’m excited about my eighth coming out this year. My first hard-cover will be released this month, and it’s got synthetic diamonds, the Russian mob, the FBI — everything you need for a thriller.

Oh, and I’m also the mayor of Freehold Township. Sometimes I can’t believe folks read my books and feel safe voting for me, but this is year 20 of being an elected official, so I guess I’m doing something right. I also belong to several volunteer organizations like the Philip Reynolds Detachment of the Marine Corps League and the Veteran’s Community Alliance.

You starting to get the picture? I like being really busy — but not just with my store. I’m pretty sure if I devoted all of this energy to just my store, I would have been burnt out 15 years ago. Let’s face it, the public wears you down.

My point is this: Keep yourself mentally, physically and spiritually healthy. We work to live, not live to work. And no matter how much you love your store, you need other interests. The more you have to talk about, the more connections you have to your customers. It’s good retail, but it’s also good mental health! The bottom line: Make time for yourself! Whoever has the most fun wins. I am currently in first place.

David “Diamond Dave” Salkin is co-owner of Salkin’s Jewel Case in Freehold, NJ and author of several novels, including his most recent, Deep Black Sea. See more at davidmsalkin.com.

Advertisement

Advertisement

SPONSORED VIDEO

Wilkerson Testimonials

If It’s Time to Consolidate, It’s Time to Call Wilkerson

When Tom Moses decided to close one of the two Moses Jewelers stores in western Pennsylvania, it was time to call in the experts. After reviewing two candidates, Moses, a co-owner of the 72 year-old business, decided to go with Wilkerson. The sale went better than expected. Concerned about running it during the pandemic, Moses says it might have helped the sale. “People wanted to get out, so there was pent-up demand,” he says. “Folks were not traveling so there was disposable income, and we don’t recall a single client commenting to us, feeling uncomfortable. It was busy in here!” And perhaps most importantly, Wilkerson was easy to deal with, he says, and Susan, their personal Wilkerson consultant, was knowledgeable, organized and “really good.” Now, the company can focus on their remaining location — without the hassle of carrying over merchandise that either wouldn’t fit or hadn’t sold. “The decision to hire Wilkerson was a good one,” says Moses.

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