Real talk …. just keeping it real – because I don’t want you to think I really have it all figured out.
It’s currently 6:30am, I’ve been awake since 3am. You know those mornings, something wakes our soul up at some random time, and your body laughs at you and says “you just THOUGHT you were getting some extra sleep today”. It’s one of those times in life, where you have LOTS of things going on, lots of things coming up, you are trying to figure out how to line it all up so you don’t drop or miss anything. Surely, i’m not the only one. Right? Tell me I’m right.
Since 3am, I flip flopped like a fish out of water for an hour, I got up and went to the other room and surfed TikTok (yeah, i get sucked in there), I created and sent out about 15 invoices for the boutique, brain stormed and did some research on black Friday sales, sent my assistant some notes on some thoughts, and now… I’m emptying my brain for the moment. For my other Girl Bosses out there… this one is for you.
How in the world do you map out all of your ideas, thoughts and dreams? I currently have 3 projects in my brain that are taking up way too much space. How do you build action plans and really stick to them? If I ever wondered where my kids got there ADHD from, I have quickly learned the answer over the last 5 years. How in the world, do you stay on track and keep the plates spinning? Well, maybe not just spinning – how do you keep them spinning and still move forward and make progress?
My brain is officially on overload. I think it’s maybe the feeling of the end of the year quickly approaching and knowing how busy it gets. My goal every year is to not get buried in the daily details and do things to make a bigger impact…. and then… well… my brain kicks in and I feel like I’m drowning again.
What you might see from the outside is a crazy girl who has multiple businesses and seems to be pulling it off pretty well. Real talk – how i feel?? A little girl still playing in a big kids playground and just trying to find that clear path to balancing it all out and really making progress. To my fellow Girl bosses, we never stop dreaming, we never stop hustling… we might just stumble a little along the way.
Here’s to each of you that woke up WAY too early with the squirrels running wild in your brain. Grab another cup of coffee, pull your big girl panties on, and let’s go do this!!
All my love
Are you getting lost in the world of social media? There are days I log on and start scrolling, only to feel my anxiety start climbing. I know we are in an election season, and I know that means that people want to “prove” why their candidate is the best. What I don’t understand, is why does it require being ugly and vicious when making their argument. I find myself asking each and every day, at what point did candidates stop talking about their plans and what they are going to do to make the world better? Locally and nationally, I’ve noticed that candidates spend more time trying to “go after” the other and prove what a horrible person the other candidate is.
Now, let me preface this next thought – I realize that I am a “rose colored glasses” person. I find myself wondering – If a candidate spent more time talking about their plans, their goals, and truly rising above all the vitriol… would they make a bigger impact? For me personally, I am extremely turned off by those that argue and fight back with ugliness. The loudest ones will always have the bigger impact – they are what people remember. However, why can’t they be loud… and kind.
I didn’t mean for this to get political. However, that is the world we are living in currently.
I made a post last week about Nothing But Good Vibes. There is a perceived power in social media and being online, the power of anonymity. People type things that they would never say face to face. It breaks my heart. I have purposely not engaged with people on social media, in fact, I have “unfriended” a lot of people. Words are powerful, and I hope one day more people remember that. So, if I seem quiet… just know that I’m over here sending out good vibes and hustling. I want only good things out in the world, no drama, no ugliness… just good conversations, good vibes and kind humans.
Today – try not to engage. Try to rise above. Send some good vibes out into the universe.
As I sit here this morning, listening to the birds, the wind, the just normal sounds of the day to day… my mind is going in a million different directions. We are all aware that we live in a world that we have WAY more distractions than ever before. I think 2020 will always be the year that taught us so many things. Good and Bad. If you are an entrepreneur, it is quite possible that this pandemic either caused you to pivot and find new ways to be successful, or unfortunately, it may have caused you to go back to working for someone else. Either option is ok, and I don’t think that we hear that enough.
For me, I am blessed to have two really great businesses. While they did suffer thru this, they also survived. My photography business always has peaks and valleys throughout the year. I set goals for myself each year, this year, we won’t hit them. I am ok with that, because it’s allowed me to fix some things that needed to be fixed, streamline some of the processes, and put some really cool things in place going forward. My boutique business, has been such a blessing. It has kept us afloat and it is thriving. The boutique was only supposed to be a “side hustle”. Well, let me tell you – it’s a full fledged, real 50 hour a week, oh my gosh I need help full time business.
In all of this – have you found a new balance? Do you feel as though you are more in control of your world after having a couple of months while the world shut down? Let me be real honest and transparent here – I don’t. I feel as though I came back swinging and have thrown all of our dreams and hopes out there in an attempt to get back ahead. Slow and easy is what wins the race, right? Isn’t that the saying? Apparently, cliche’s have never met me or Melissa.
Over the last couple of weeks, we have had several “nudges” from God. Slow down. Don’t forget what is important. Don’t forget to live this life you are building. Sometimes, we believe, God gives you little nudges and then when you aren’t listening – he knocks you over the head with it. Persistent Fella. So this week, we had to finally wave the white flag and listen. We hear You. We are praying and believing in the plan that is laid out for us. It may not be what we want, but then again… is it ever? The things you see from the outside, those won’t change. It’s all the things we juggle behind the scenes and try to take on that will change for us. Learning to say no, learning to find contentment, learning that work and money isn’t what it is all about.
So let me ask you – are you listening? Are you being given little nudges and ignoring them? Please don’t. He doesn’t give little nudges forever. Learn to be still and listen. Your body and mind will appreciate you way more. They say you can’t pour from an empty cup, and that’s definitely true in my life and business too. It’s so important to slow down and give yourself a little grace when you feel overwhelmed.
All my love
I had a great conversation with a dear friend of mine this week. One that made me reflect over my own journey – the bumps in the road, the let downs, the moments where I felt like I was soaring, and the baby steps a long the way. It all matters. It all makes a difference and causes us to be the people we are today. We talked about how, no matter what, we believe in each other and that never changes.
One of the things he said to me was a quote that reminds him every day to build his dreams… Nobody Cares, Work Harder. As harsh as that may sound – my goodness it is so true. It doesn’t matter what your excuses are – it doesn’t matter what you are dealing with and going thru.. work harder if you want to succeed.
I have a tendency to come across as a hard ass sometimes. I tend to be very realistic and try not to let others make excuses without having a solution in mind. It’s not for any other reason than I truly believe that you can build the life you want. Each and every day, I wake up and hustle. I hustle to not fail, to be a better human than I was the day before, to be a better business owner, to reach dreams that sometimes never felt possible. I fight every day because I see things bigger than what is “right now”. I see a bigger and better future and I will take every opportunity to get there.
Are you making excuses? Are you allowing your fear to drive your story? What if, you worked so hard that you accomplished your dreams? What if, those dreams became reality and you could dream up more things?
So, when you start to think of the one million excuses as to why you can’t have the life you want…. ask yourself… are you working harder? Take a leap of faith and push for your dreams. Nobody cares, work harder.
I’ve gone back and forth on what to write for my blog regarding the current state of our world.
I’m heart broken for the countries that are devastated by this virus, I’m heart broken for the families in the US that are struggling to find the bare necessities at the grocery stores.
I have gone to all the extremes over the last few days and as I sit here at 5am this morning, I have to fall back on my faith and believe that we will rise above and be a stronger human race on the other side of it all.
I am thankful for those that work for companies that are still able to earn a paycheck and still provide for their families. There are so many that are not as fortunate. I am thankful for the businesses that are able to adjust and change their business models to allow their employees to either change their job or work from home.
For my fellow small business owners, entrepreneurs, and side hustlers that all of a sudden becomes your full time job. DONT STOP.
When you stop working on your business… you will stop the momentum. Yes, your sales will most likely fall drastically during this time. However, I choose to believe with all of my heart that we will rebound from this.
Let’s spend this time doing the things we haven’t had time to do.
Improve your processes.
Clean up your emails and templates
Clean up your files and hard drives
Re-do your branding and website
Organize your back office and shelves
Plan out your promotions for the rest of the year
Imagine if you spent the time being productive instead of sitting in an state of panic and fear… when it does rebound… you will be way ahead of the curve and ready to conquer your world.
Over the next few weeks, I will be sharing with you later tips and info on family sessions, head shots, senior sessions and boudoir sessions. Why not start planning for your future session while you have the time. We will also be sharing info on how we can make progress in our businesses and keep moving forward.
If you can, shop local businesses, pre-book your appointments, share these businesses with your social media… ask what you can do to help. Sometimes – it’s more impactful than you know.
Sending all the love and good juju to you.
Have you ever really sat down and really thought about your why? Your reason for doing the job you do every day? Whether you work a corporate job for someone else, or you are an entrepreneur and building a business. Why do you do what you do? What is it that makes what you do important? What is it about you that makes you stand out?
I can’t really answer those questions for you… but I can share with you my why. I can tell you why I do the things I do and what my purpose is.
I can think way back in my little life and tell you that my purpose was always to help others. When I was a little girl, I wanted to be a pediatric physical therapist. I didn’t want to work with grownups because they tend to see defeat and lack the ability to believe in the impossible. Today, I want to help people grow their self confidence and rediscover their version of beautiful. I want to help others see the possibilities are truly within them and they just have to be strong enough to grab ahold of it and run.
So, let’s talk a little bit about this in a work related conversation. Think about your industry. Is it over saturated? Does it feel as though there are SO many people doing the same thing you are doing? What is it that sets you apart and makes you stand out from those hustling for the same customers?
I can only talk to you in photography terms.. but feel free to insert your industry into the same conversation.
For me as a photographer… I can’t say I’m the best. I’m far from it…SO very far from the best. However, let’s face it, you can take some really killer pictures with a phone now. What makes me stand out is… well, it’s me. it’s what I bring to the table. I photograph men and women in all of the genres I shoot, but what where I thrive… that’s photographing women. I want to photograph women and help them see past their body image issues and insecurities.
Let’s take high school seniors… gosh I can’t imagine growing into my own skin and trying to figure out who I am with all the things in social media flying at them. Oh. Wait. yes I can. I totally get it. I look at at women on instagram, and think “i wish my hair looked like that, I wish my stomach wasn’t near as squishy as it is, I wish that my skin looked as flawless as hers.” I get it girl. So, when I talk to my senior clients and their parents, I want them to know that I see them. I hear them. I want to show them just how beautiful they are without all the extra editing and “stuff”. I want each girl to get her hair and makeup done and still feel like herself. I want her to love her experience and her images and get a big ol’ cheesy smile each time she sees her images pop up somewhere.
My headshot clients…. these ladies are hustling. They are trying to prove to the world, their friends, and themselves that they are going to make it and they are going to take over the world…. but first, they just need to get the dreaded headshot done. I want my clients to sit and talk with me, tell me about their business. Tell me about their dreams. I want them to relax just enough to let that drive and passion shine thru their eyes.
My boudoir ladies… oh these ladies will forever be my passion. Boudoir is so much more than sexy images, so much more than stripping down and revealing your body. It’s about learning and rediscovering what makes you beautiful and what makes you stand out to the world. Boudoir to me, is about remembering that you are so much more than “just a mom, or a kid taxi driver, or just a hard worker… I want to show each of my boudoir clients that they are worthy of feeling beautiful. They are worthy of doing something to feed their soul and remember how incredible they truly are.
So….my why? Why do I do what i do and how do I stand out amongst a sea of other photographers… I want to help break down someone’s barriers, insecurities, show them that having your picture taken isn’t as scary as you think it might be, because on the other side of it… you might just find you are more than you believed.
Tell me, what is your why? Why do you get up each day and hustle to grow your business? Why do you get up each day and go to work?