Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting on the future of my business, and how that all balances with the dreams God has laid on my heart. I never thought in a million years I’d be the owner of a successful wedding and portrait photography studio, but here I am! It’s been so rewarding, and I truly love what I do.
Yet, as I look at all the things I’m juggling as an entrepreneur and as a wife, mom, and follower of Jesus, I have realized that something isn’t quite right. I’ve always said that faith and family come before my business. But recently, that hasn’t been the truth. Instead of spending what little “free” time I have on the things that matter most, I’m often rushing to finish editing or post a gallery or respond to a client email. I’m constantly checking things on my phone or worrying about if I have enough up to date material on social media. I’ve never liked being attached to my phone like that, and I’m certain my husband isn’t a fan either. Basically, any spare time, which with a busy toddler, amounts to nap time and after bed time, is spent on my business. I really can’t get very much accomplished while he’s awake. This means the things that are most important to me have taken a back seat.
Like I said before, I love what I do. I love photographing weddings and being part of that special day. I love capturing unforgettable moments. It’s so rewarding to work with seniors and give them a day that totally boosts their confidence and is a ton of fun. But…I love God and my family more. And while I dream of being able to do it all, it’s just not possible. I would be left with regret of some sort, most likely missing out on the unforgettable moments in my life. And that’s not okay.
I’m grateful for all of my clients who understand that as a one woman show, I can’t do everything ASAP. Even if I try or want to, it’s just not possible! I’m grateful for patience. I’m grateful for like minded people. But I still believe that if I’m going to do it right, it needs to be my absolute best. And while I can definitely make that happen, it comes with a huge personal sacrifice.
From this day forward, I’m going to be implementing a few things that will help me get my priorities back in line. This may mean that some potential clients won’t be as enthusiastic to work with me, and I’m okay with that. I’d much rather work with people who understand my values and are possibly even similar in how they prioritize what’s most important to them!
What will this look like practically? Honestly, I’m not sure. Right now, I have some obligations to current wedding and senior clients that I want to honor and make sure I give my all. But, I do not want to give up every evening to my computer. So, I’m going to try a few things. Up until now, I’ve been hesitant to outsource or hire help because I like doing all aspects of my business. But something has to give. For starters, I’m going to have a nanny for a few hours each week in the mornings while I’m at home to watch my son Gus. This isn’t my preference, but I think it’s what will work best in the short term. It will only be about 3 hrs per week, which really isn’t that much, but just enough to get a few things done. I’m also strongly considering and looking into some outsourcing of editing and bookkeeping. Bookkeeping has never been my favorite, so if I can find someone who fits what I’m looking for, that’s one less thing! For editing, I’m a bit more picky. I’ve been trying SO hard to be more efficient at delivering high quality images, but this still takes up a significant amount of time. And training someone to edit like me also takes time. But I may be able to do some outsourcing. We will see.
Finally, I’m going to be implementing some set work hours/days. I prefer to do photoshoots in the evenings because it’s the best time for shooting, but I no longer want to spend endless hours on my computer in the evening when I could be spending it with my family. I’ll also be continuing to turn down Sunday photoshoots. I know that many photographers do lots of photoshoots on Sundays, but for us and our family, that’s our one day off together that we can rely on, and I want to soak up all the days I can with the people I love most. 🙂 Because really, that’s the point of all of this, right?