October 1, 2019

5 Things I Learned When I Became An Entrepreneur

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5 Things I Learned When I Became An Entrepreneur

Becoming an entrepreneur has been one of the best things to ever happen to me.  There were some things I expected to happen, and a few things that I didn’t expect.   Growing up with both my parents working for them self it was something I always dreamed of doing one day.  They both worked a lot, however my Mom could take extra time off during the holidays to make Christmas Cookies with us, have flexibility in her schedule when my brother became very sick, and take family vacations.  However, that also did mean them working weekends.  I knew working for myself would give me some freedom to live my life on my own terms, devote time to things in my life that matters but it also means no PTO; if I’m not working I’m not making money, working weekends, and no retirement fund.  It’s all on me.  Here are a few things that I came surprising that came along with entrepreneurship.


Sure we all do this.  Go get our nails done, get our hair done, go for a run.  If we have time.  But honestly when I was working a full time job (and doing photography) these were low on my list.   I’m talking deeper than a nail appointment.  I’m talking self care books, regular work outs & podcasts to better my mind.   I’ve learned I can’t pour from an empty cup.  I need to do these things to pour the energy back into my clients.  If I’m constantly running myself into the ground I will have nothing left.


Sure, adulthood in general comes with a lot of responsibility but owning a business comes with a lot.   If I have 6 weddings under my belt to edit, e-mails to respond to, and tax deadlines none of those things care if I take a sick day.  There is no one there to pick on the slack (other than a super supportive husband to help me run work errands and build my studio; which I am forever grateful for) .  I am human, I am only one person.   Even on my worst days I still have a business to run.   I have learned to prioritize my tasks stay on top of things.  This starts with setting an early alarm, an early bed time and writing to do lists.  I can’t just enter a day and hope for the best.  I have to be responsible.


This is a big one; it can be tough to juggle it all.  Editing, taxes, e-mails, family time, personal time, as the list goes on and on.  I used to work until a task was finished.  I could be stuck editing a wedding for 14 hours and rarely take a break because I felt guilty to take a break.   Was this fair to my family ?  Was this fair to myself?  I really had to start being more intentional with my time.  Setting an alarm, getting a workout in, spending 4 hours editing, 2 hours on e-mails, among other behind the scenes tasks so by the time 5 pm rolled around I could make dinner for my family if I’m not out shooting and still make time for myself.  I’m able to do this because I am very intentional with my time and my tasks.


As my schedule started to pile in I realized how much I am capable of.   It’s easy to get overwhelmed with anything in life but if love what you do its harder to reach burn out.   The busier I got in my business the more passion  and desire I got for making myself better, working on my craft.  I truly know how much I am capable of.  I truly believe we have choices in life.  I made a solid choice to make this a successful career for myself.  I spare no expense when it comes to my business because I know there is a reward at the end.  Sure some days are hard.   I stress about responding to emails right away, editing galleries quickly.  Somedays aren’t perfect and need to take a day off (like any normal human) but the second I step in front of my camera all of that goes away and I know I am capable of more.


The funny thing about owning your own business is the drive the comes with it.  Obviously, most had their own desires and dreams which is probably why they set out to this this business venture on my own so it comes with the territory.   But I saw the world differently, I started reading more, listening to podcasts and learning and growing my craft which meant constant workshops, mentorships and conferences.  The thought of too many glasses on wine on a Friday night or a beach vacation with too many margaritas wasn’t on the top of my list for personal enjoyment anymore.  I enjoyed better myself, my mind, my family and seeing the world.  I want to explore new places, new things, eat new food and experience new cultures.


It’s weird how it switches but owning my own business really has opened my eyes to the world as my business grows I feel the need to better my self not only for myself, my family, my health but also my clients.  The better I can be to love and serve on everything in my life ultimately brings me joy and hey that’s why life is all about, right?

Xo Crystal