Yep – I’ve done something that might shock a few people, maybe get a few tongues wagging, and it all comes down to balance. No, I haven’t taken up Yoga! But yes, I have turned down weddings I *could* have photographed in coming years, and in effect, have ‘turned up’ everything for myself.
Each year, I say I am going to go to the Australian Open next time.
Every time I’m watching it while editing another wedding at home.
I booked a brilliant trip to watch the World Netball Championships and it was meant to be a dream, tonnes of netball, watching my idols, no camera (well…that was more an airline issue), and a break…in the wedding off-season of course.
The reality was that I was sick through most of it, had to give up my seat for a few games and nearly missed the Grand Final match, was forced to stay longer due to said illness, and took a fair while to recover once returning home… But the Australian Diamonds won GOLD!! Dream came true to see it live!!
I’m always a goal setter, and my yearly wedding target is 25 weddings. This is also a cut off number because I want to be able to give my clients the time and attention their beautiful and individual weddings deserve. Yet I was always going over this (and just working extreme hours to keep the service up there), because there were people in need after being let down by someone else, or special people in my life that I wanted to be there for. I didn’t take on more work because I was afraid of missing out, but it was rather a desire to please, and experience more.
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my job, the opportunities it presents, the people I meet and the beautiful moments that I partake in and record for a lifetime. But in my former life, pre wedding photography, I was involved in Youth Work, and I’m now again exploring Life/Business Coaching. Understanding needs vs. wants, identifying skills, foreseeing challenges before they become problems. Creating success. Finding balance.
Applying these principles to my own life and business has meant a few things. We’ve found new systems to take over some of the repeat and automatic tasks of business; I’ve tightened my workflow to have a quicker turnaround time at no cost to my customer service goals, I no longer compromise on my contactable hours – so if you don’t hear from me on a Sunday, that’s why, and yes, I say no to weddings, to balance business, boundaries and body and soul.
It’s already making changes, despite the fact that the reduction in wedding workload isn’t taking place until next year. Even Beej has been able to slow down with the new systems in place, which has meant more time with a toddler who is getting busier by the second, and some rest time to grow healthy baby number 2! Oh and we get time to send each other more catch up emails too which is nice!! It’s nothing that is going to make a noticeable change on the outside just yet – and the spare time I am finding is being invested into diving further into the coaching (more on that later). But to my friends and family it means more quality time, in more quantity. More time with Lacey and Chelsea, I just love those girls so much! To my clients it means an even higher level of service and attention, and a much quicker turn around time. It means discovering new career paths whilst building others up on theirs – which is probably what I am most excited about!
I will be sharing more shortly, but first I wanted to let everyone know why there might be a drop in my response time outside of my published office hours, why they might get a ‘sorry I’m unavailable’ response to their wedding query, and not see me post a wedding from that date, and why you might be seeing confusing posts on my social pages about coaching, when we know it is well outside of netball season! Haha! And also to let you know that you sometimes have to say yes to yourself, which means saying no to others – it might shock them, but it’s worth more than 100 thank you’s in the end.
Cant wait to spend more time in 2016 with my nieces Lacey + Chelsea… xx