What I am about to say will probably ruffle feathers, I can almost guarantee it, BUT I hope you’ll feel this through to the end. See where my heart is, and why I say maybe you’re not meant to be a photographer…or whatever it is you’re struggling to make a go of.
Here’s the deal I get it in this “You can do anything, and be anything you want in life” mentality that this isn’t going to be a popular statement. So just roll with me here 😉
Maybe, just maybe, you’re not called to be a photographer, chef, firefighter, wedding planner, baker, florist, teacher, or ______ (fill in your desired career). *GASP* and cue the lynch mob! Maybe you are, BUT it IS possible that you’re not.
Just because we all own stoves, and loooove to cook, doesn’t mean we’re to become Julia Childs.
You may have a “healing touch” that can soothe just about anyone, but you’re not meant to be a Doctor.
Likewise just because you have a killer boat, fishing rod, and can spend all day on the river you’re not going to become the next Bill Dance.
A gift, an ability, having the right equipment, do NOT always equate to being the gateway to the career you’re meant to impact the world with.
It took me years of getting hooked into “pyramid” companies, many of which ARE indeed amazing and can having mega rewards/paychecks, to realize something monumental.
Yes, the discounts, and the money, are sooooo enticing you see others making so “effortlessly”. Then, BONUS, I loooove make-up, skin care, chocolate, jewelry, even wine, BUT they weren’t jobs I was sincerely, 100000%, passionate about. They weren’t gigs I was willing to sacrifice anything for…much less vacations, my own place, dinner out, etc…
You see I was in love with the product, the idea of a quick buck doing something I loved…and getting it for less…not the process and the PURPOSE behind it.
Even answering phones all day in a Call Center is a calling (no pun intended😂)…some are meant to do it, while others almost, or do, suffer nervous breakdowns.
You either see the purpose behind it, love the process, and embrace it to the fullest, orrrrr, like me, you quit.
You quit with no solid back-up plan, no job in line other than this VERY part-time, time stealing, money eating, soul fire burning, hobby called “Photography”.
You quit, jumping blindfolded, ready to fumble it out, because sitting in discontent just for security no longer sounds as appealing as dangerous uncertainty doing something you wake daily thinking about.
I left a steady (AMAZING) paycheck, INSURANCE, retirement fund, bonuses, living in the wonderful Middle Tennessee area so close to Nashville that it was PERFECT…for straight uncertainty.
I had to move back with my parents in East TN, surrender security, surrender luxuries (like health insurance), all to pursue something that FINALLY, truly, FIT ME!
I’d found my purpose, and as awful as it was not having steady, reliable (make people pay deposits ya’ll!!!) income, it just started to naturally role into place.
Wasn’t easy. Still to this day is packed with sacrifices (can’t get a mortgage, chose a studio over my own place because that was a need more than my parents not driving my 30yr old self crazy), sleep loss (though that thankfully has gotten better with outsourcing!), giving up one thing I’ve saved for to replace something more important, and the list goes on.
You see I’ve been told over the years I can “sell you the shoes off of someone else’s feet”, so it wasn’t lack of sales ability that was the problem with those other jobs.
I couldn’t sell any of it very well despite my killer sales pitches, knowledge, and knowing the bonuses I could achieve; because I didn’t TRULY care about it.
THEN when someone else I knew came along to sell the same thing (whatever the new *trendy* sales item was in our tiny town) I was always devastated at how seemingly quickly they took off…how much more they were making than me.
And I wasn’t willing to fight them for it. It wasn’t my absolute passion…and it showed. In my sales attitude, and my business. Maybe others didn’t see it, besides my recruiters, but I was NOT interested in sacrificing anything to build those businesses or advance positions (unless it was pushed upon me).
I let these teeny tiny speed bumps become giant brick walls blocking my success, and I had no interest in mustering the energy to tear them down or climb over.
Like Sue Bryce says I had “self imposed mental blocks”, and because those weren’t career paths my soul was on fire for I was perfectly fine letting others just take my business.
Now this part won’t be for many of you, but my faith and belief in God’s divine plan, and His perfect timing, has shown me time and time again that He has a career for us that is designed to fit uniquely us. A passion, not just a paycheck, that He also let’s pay our bills.
So, you have to decide if you love it so much you’re willing to sacrifice what.ev.er. and do whatever it takes to make this a success. Decide if you’re willing to fight for it because it’s what you live and breathe to do, or if it’s just an outlet to let you do something fun and creative for little while.
What you fight for is what will manifest. So search your soul, and find the thing that lights it on FIRE! Fight for that! Invest in that!
If it’s not photography then so be it! If it’s not law school, your teaching certification, your nursing degree, a promotion, etc… then let it go.
BUT, if it is, then I urge you to run, full steam ahead, stop building your own walls by laying the bricks, or letting others lay them for you, and, like the saying says, “get out of your own way”!
I would rather spend every day of my life clawing, scraping, fighting for this gift of Photography, than simply making an easy, secure, dollar.
The risk is great here, people’s memories and legacies are on the line with real lawsuits and consequences possible. I say that’s how you know you’ve found your soul fire calling…when you know the risks and proceed sacrificing anyway to make it happen.
I can tell you all of this as one who’s lived it. Is still living it, walking it out sacrifice by sacrifice, but is reaping rewards never imagined. Rewards that came in form of a thriving Clothing Boutique for Small thru 3XL…another business, another passion, I didn’t ever plan or see coming, but that fits smashingly.
Why? Because if I hadn’t walked out Photography I wouldn’t have learned all I needed to know to offer a unique eye for outfitting women of all BEAUTIFUL sizes in figure flattering, photographer approved (i.e. will photograph well), clothing.
In the wise words of Yoda: “Do or do not, there is no try”!
You never know what other blessings await as you trudge it out toward the goal line, and you just might miss those blessings if you keep trying to force something you’re just not meant to do.
Make it happen, or find what you’re supposed to make happen, and let everything else fall by the way side!