I’ve been in the photography business for over twenty years, and something I get asked all the time is: do you still love what you do? The answer is YES! However, even though my passion for photography is stronger than ever, I’ll be honest:
It takes effort to keep the spark alive.
Whenever you turn something you love into a job, there’s bound to be moments of stress and overwhelm. I’m here to tell you that the dream of loving what you do is possible, and here’s four things I’ve done in my own life and business that allows me to keep my lifelong love of photography alive, even while running a busy photography business!
1. Mix up Your Offerings
As most of you know, I was a wedding photography for YEARS – and the burnout was real! Then, once I got into portrait photography, my world was taken over by newborn babies and fun family sessions, which is where it’s been for well over a decade.
Don’t get me wrong, I love working with families, getting my baby fix every week, and watching little ones grow. But in the past few years, I’ve discovered something new about myself: that I am very creatively inspired by personal branding sessions (aka glorified professional portraits)!
Adding this new offering has kept my passion for my craft strong and inspires me to think in new, creative ways. Plus, I get to work with some amazing people doing amazing things. By having a variety of offerings, my days are never redundant or boring and I’m always having to keep my photo skills on point so I can pivot to capture the kind of imagery that is required for whatever I’m shooting. LOVE that!
2. Set Frequent Goals
We tend to think that goals need to be big things, like buying a house or having kids. But do you know what will get you excited to dive into your business and photograph every single day? Mini goals!
I’m a huge list-maker (seriously, there’s about 4 notebooks on my desk at any given time), and my lists always include short-term and long-term goals. It’s important to me that I have little achievements to get me through the week! These are things that are easy to check off so I can feel like I’ve accomplished something.
The great part is, setting mini goals sets me up for conquering the bigger goals by giving me a head start into productivity and accomplishment. Once the little things are checked off the list, I’m actually excited to dive into the more in-depth goals and give them my full attention.
3. Seek out Education and Skills
I’ve talked a LOT about how important it is to continue your education, no matter how many years you’ve been in the biz, and I’m gonna share it again!
From online courses to weekend workshops to full on retreats and conferences, there is always, always something new to learn. For me, I’m confident in my technical skills as a photographer, so these days I’m seeking out information about website building, Facebook ads, and everything social-media-marketing related.
Even though I’m not taking classes on how to shoot, the other skills I’m learning are giving me a million new ideas for growing and transforming my business.
4. Find Inspiration
It’s easy to find inspiration from other photographers but sometimes, it helps to find inspiration outside of your industry as well. The key to staying motivated in every area of your life is to seek out the things that make you feel inspired, creative, and happy!
I love to travel, collect records, dance, and take walks in nature with my friends. All of these things are not just inspiring to me, they also give me much-needed breaks from the studio and chances to rest and rejuvenate.
By finding other ways to be inspired, your creativity in your business will flow more fluidly and give you the life you need to keep it all going.