It’s a marathon, not a sprint… This has been my mantra this week, as I have spent a fair amount of time wondering why I don’t have this whole thing figured out yet! You know, when I started this job only 6 months ago (doesn’t it seem like MUCH longer than that?!) I was so nervous that nobody would want me to take their pictures. At first, all I thought about was how hard it was to put myself out there, and I never could have imagined that my problem would be being TOO busy! I still pinch myself when I think about the success we have had these past 6 months, and every time I get an email or website inquiry from a new client I do a little happy dance. I still have the beginner mindset of needing and wanting to fit everyone in – I mean, c’mon – I can do it all, right?
But, along with starting a new business and diving headfirst into any new venture comes some bumps in the road. Most jobs are best learned by experience and this is no exception! I started out thinking I could take pictures during the day and edit them at night when my kids were asleep – perfect balance of career I love and not being away from my children! Oh, silly, silly me. I didn’t pay attention to my schedule quickly filling up, as I was so excited to fit in every single client that I didn’t even think about having to also schedule days to edit those sessions. Or that traveling would take as much time as it does, especially when you figure in set up and take down, and then packing and unpacking the car (which is why the things from my session yesterday are STILL in my car… shhh, don’t tell my husband). Another thing that I grossly underestimated – emails and client communication takes time too! Lots of time!
So, where am I going with all of this? I. Am. Behind. More so than ever. I overbooked myself and am trying so hard to keep up, but whenever anything unexpected happens, I fall a bit more behind. And anyone who has kids and families knows that about 20 unexpected things happen every day! Throw in the mix building a new house, problems with the renters in the old one, and some family situations and holy moly, I am in a constant state of playing catch up! Every second I can spare, I sit down at the computer or I’m checking email on my phone, but right now, it just isn’t enough…
Now, I am learning from this. I am working on setting a schedule, learning how to best maximize my working time, and figuring out exactly how many sessions I can handle per week and still be a GOOD mom, wife and photographer. Because right now, I’m not really doing my best at any of those things… I am learning that I don’t do ANYONE any good by staying up until 2am, needing a caffeine IV to get me through the next day, checking my email constantly, running late to school and dance and soccer, and then doing it all again day in and day out. My kids deserve more than that, my clients deserve more than that, and I need to take better care of myself! My 3 main goals when I started my business were to provide you with amazing pictures at an affordable cost, make getting your pictures taken a fun and positive experience, and provide you with exceptional customer service – quick response time to emails and phone calls, and fast turnaround time with your completed CD. Unfortunately, that last part is taking a hit right now, right along with my poor kids’ routines and precious mommy time.
Don’t worry, I’m not writing this to make some big announcement or tell you that big changes are coming to LSP, we’re not ready for any of that yet, nor do I think it’s necessary! You have let me into your homes and trusted me to capture memories of your families, so now I’m going to let you in on a little secret…. Shhhh, don’t tell, BUT – I don’t have it all figured out yet. At all. In fact, some days I feel like I don’t have anything figured out! I’m working on it, and we’ll get there, but for right now, thank you for all for coming along with me for the ride. I know some of you have been waiting on CDs and I’m sorry – they are coming, soon! I know I’ve missed some emails, and I’m sorry! I know there will be more bumps in the road, and we’ll get over those too. It’s a marathon, not a sprint, and truthfully, we are really only on about mile 3! We (okay, I) will get through this, and we’ll (okay, I’ll) be better than ever!
So, back to the pictures, because if you stuck with me reading through that whole thing, then you deserve to see some beautiful faces (and, honestly, this is my favorite part)! Here are just a few of the kiddos I had the pleasure of spending some time with this past week. Looking at these faces just remind me once more that I do truly have the BEST job in the world, and that I will absolutely figure out a way to do what I love to do in a way that works for all of us. One more thing – I also have the. BEST. clients. around. Without a doubt. Thanks guys :)