This is a call to action.
Action that makes a difference.
Your procrastination is killing your business, and it’s killing your ability to benefit and serve your market.
The time you’re spending doing anything but something important is time you’ll never get back. You’re not just standing still – you’re putting distance between where you are and where you dream of being.
I know how it is
Over the last 14 years I’ve been a professional photographer, I don’t even want to tally how many hours, days, months and years combined I have spent doing the things that didn’t matter.
I poured over reviews of the latest lenses, bodies, gear and gadgets. And I lusted and pined.
I read fiery argument after argument on the discussion boards about sharpness, pricing, the apocalypse of the industry because of the “noobs.” And I was flush with secondhand indignation and anxiety.
I read a thousand photo and Photoshop tutorials. And I even attempted doing a few of them.
I photographed flowers. So many flowers. And ants. And sunsets. A few bees and butterflies and interesting leaves and puddles of water. And I eventually learned that flora and fauna don’t buy photos.
I paid my annual dues, and my meeting dues, and my entry fees, and for the gas to drive into the Big City to attend my professional association meetings. And I always felt inadequate, only discovering years later that their goals and mine were completely incongruous.
I took as sage wisdom the words and advice of grognards – professional photographers who were too angry, bitter, jealous, lazy, stubborn, stagnant and broken-hearted to offer a single word of encouragement, much less actionable advice. And I was poisoned, distracted, disenchanted by their sick counsel.
I read books and I didn’t act. I read blog posts, e-books, and magazine articles and I didn’t act. I watched YouTube videos and I didn’t act. I attended workshops and I didn’t act. I attended meetings and meet-ups and I didn’t act. I attended national conferences and I didn’t act. I asked questions of photographers more successful than myself, and I didn’t act. I learned things, so many things, of such great insight and value, and I didn’t act.
Worst of all, I was inspired – and I didn’t act.
Inspiration is the most potent fuel for the engine that makes you run as an artist, and as a business owner.
Inspiration gets you out of bed an hour early in the mornings.
Inspiration gets your phone out of your pocket and a friend in front of your camera as often as possible to practice your art.
Inspiration gets you off your arse and taking action.
It makes progress.
It creates value.
It enables Kaizen – the small daily improvements that create amazing change over time.
Tim Ferriss has a quote on his desk by chef Bobby Flay that reads:
“Take risks and you’ll get the payoffs. Learn from your mistakes until you succeed. It’s that simple.”
Don’t let 2013 be your year of inspiration.
Make 2013 your year of inspiration.
- Brainstorm session: Whip out your paper and pencil. What are you spending your time doing that doesn’t matter? File a copy of this in your Brainstorms folder, and tack a second copy on your wall – this is your professional Not To Do List for 2013.
- Another Brainstorm session: Whip out your paper and pencil. When do you feel the most excited about your photography business? When do you feel the most inspired? Where? How? Why? Are you inspired right now? What can you do this year to make yourself a more valuable photographer for your clients? File a copy of this in your Brainstorms folder, and tack a second copy on your wall – this is your professional To Do List for 2013.
- Every morning when you wake up, define the three MITs – Most Important Tasks – for the day that will make a difference in your life. Individual, specific, reasonable, progress-creating tasks that each take you one step closer to the art, business, success, and life you want.
- Then, in the words of the Goddess of Victory – “Just Do It.”
- My writing at PartTimePhoto.com exists to serve your needs as an amateur photographer making the transition to paid professional. I appreciate and welcome your readership, and invite you to subscribe to my e-mail newsletter at the top of any page of this site.
- If anything in this post has spoken to and inspired you, please comment below, drop me an e-mail, or call or text me at 830-688-1564 and let me know. I’d love to hear how you use these ideas to better your part time photography business!