I had some lose goals for 2017 but nothing concrete. Then I wrote them down on a chalkboard and hung it in my office. You know what happened? I reached almost all of my goals without realizing it! I found this so powerful that I wanted to share my goals and how they were achieved. (Because, honestly, it was not in the way I originally planned!) I will also be sharing my 2018 goals on my blog. Because if you put it out there, it will happen!
I wanted to coordinate my first styled shoot. I had participated in sytled shoots that others have put together, but none of my own. If you do not know, a styled shoot is when wedding vendors get together and stage a small wedding. This is a great way for us to flex our creative muscles, create new trends, and get to know each other better.
So, I did my research, read a ton of articles, and finally started reaching out to vendors to coordinate the shoot. Originally, I was shooting for mid-November. Due to unforeseen issues it did not take place until December 22nd. Yep. Right before Christmas. Talk about cutting it close to the wire. But I did it! I finally got a group of amazing vendors together and coordinated am amazing styled shoot before the end of the year!
Finish the Academy
The Academy is an online wedding photography certificate course that I am enrolled in. It covers everything from how to use a camera to creating a business plan. I know all the technical aspects of being a wedding photographer, so I was interested in enrolling for the business aspects of the course. Marketing, client experience, and business planning were my top interests. And of course creative lighting with Montana Dennis was just an added bonus!
My goal was to finish the academy. I did not complete this goal. I got about 50% done with the courses and about 25% done with the homework. Towards the end of the year I was having trouble trying to balance a full time job, my photography business, my health, and personal life. So trying to squeeze in time for learning was just not happening. It’s OK though. Life happens. I am giving myself grace. And this is going onto the list of goals for 2018.
Go Full Time
Which is a great segway into going full time! When I started my photography business the end goal was always to quit my fulltime job. Originally I wanted to book enough weddings to replace my income from my job. The only issue with that? It would mean I was working two full time jobs!
In my day job we had been short staffed almost the entire year. (Literally 10/12 months!) This was creating tons of stress for me. I would literally have nightmares about not sending an email or forgetting to do something at work. On top of that, I was trying to grow my photography business while taking care of my current clients and weddings. Oh, and spend time with my husband and family. I wasn’t sleeping very much and I was getting sick every few months. Something had to give, but I wasn’t booking enough to replace my income yet.
Giving up on my photography was not an option. I tried to change position at work to ones with no stress to no avail. Then I read You Are A Badass. In the book the author says that if you really want something, you will figure out how to make it happen. I really wanted to quit my job and work on my photography full time. So I had to figure out how to make it happen. I got my husband on board and I saved up 6 months worth of bills. I figured if I could not book enough wedding after giving it my all for 6 months, then what the hell am I doing?! So I waited patiently, and then put in my two weeks notice. My last day was the Friday before Christmas. The perfect timing!
Go to United
Last year I had gone to a workshop that was part of the United conference. United is a huge conference of about 300 photographers each year learning from some of the best photographers in the industry. I had only heard about the conference last year and realized it was outside of my budget. So, I put it on my goals for 2017. Sweet. The only problem? The conference was still as expensive in 2017 and it was in 2016.
I was holding off buying my ticket because my income wasn’t quite there to cover it. Then it happened. The tickets went on sale and I booked another wedding that same week! Perfect! It was meant to be! I purchased my ticket and was so excited to make the drive from Peoria to Scottsdale for those three days.
When it got a little closer to United, I realized that with traffic I was looking at a drive of almost 2 hours each way! What?! I was really regretting not getting a hotel room for the weekend. Then one of my photographer friends told me there was an opening in her room! And I only had to pay ¼ of the price of a room (because there were four of us splitting it!). I was meant to be. Everything worked out and I had the most amazing time!
So there you have it. Putting it out into the universe really works! You just have to be open to the different ways in which your goals may come into fruition. I was open to the different possibilities to reach my goals and at the end of the year I completed almost all of them! Look out 2018! I am coming for you!