Well, here goes…my very first blog post.
I figured my first post should be a personal one. So this post is about learning to cut myself some slack. The key word there? Learning. Because I’m not so great at it yet.
Trying to start a business is difficult enough; but I’m trying to start a business at the age of only 23. I know, I know, “age is but a number”, but I’m not so much worried about the number as I am about the amount of experience (both in business, and in life in general) that’s been had in those 23 years. Or more importantly, the amount of experience that has not been had in those 23 years, and what that means for success.
The dream started during my freshman year at Endicott College after an internship with a local wedding photographer. I was able to shoot some weddings with her and fell in love with the work almost immediately. The excitement of the bride and her bridesmaids getting ready, the look on the groom's face when seeing his bride for the first time, the vows, the toasts, the celebration. I was hooked. Three years later, with graduation fast approaching, my mind had already been made up that I was going to pursue a career in wedding photography, with the end goal of owning my own photography business. And so the process began.
While learning my way through things like, pricing, business taxes, marketing, and so on, I’ve been pretty bad at being kind to myself. I dwell on my mistakes, and allow myself to get bogged down by all the things I don’t know, rather than patting myself on the back every once in awhile for what I do. It’s been easy to forget that for the most part I’ve been learning it all on my own, while also juggling a life outside of my business. I’m young, my business is young, and, metaphorically speaking, I’m trying to remind myself to look down and celebrate how much of the mountain I’ve climbed, rather than only ever looking up and being discouraged at how far I have yet to go.
By year’s end I’ll be moving out of my parents’ house and into my first apartment, so I’ve been mentally designing my future home office area ever since the plan to move came about. That sounded nerdy the second I finished typing it but the nevertheless I’ll continue to visualize my dream desk area. I bought a framed print recently of a quote I’ve come to love and live by as I continue my work:
It’s a quote I think a lot of people would benefit from remembering.
I guess what I want to say to those of you also starting your own businesses, don’t get discouraged by how much there is to learn. Remember this: your business will always be evolving and you’ll always be learning. If you genuinely love what you do like I do, you should be constantly chasing after new knowledge and ways of improving yourself and your business. And as long as you’re pushing closer to your goals each day, however small the steps, you should consider yourself a success. I’m learning to do the same.