I started my business when I started my family. Building a business is hard. Raising children is hard. Being a wife is hard. All together sometimes feels impossible. You’re not alone. I’m here to share the tips and tricks that have helped me grow a profitable business while being the best mom I can.
by Lindsey Jean Photography
Whatever you decide to do, commit to it.
For two years I was a photographer on the side. I considered myself a “family and friends” photographer taking pictures of people I knew, and their friends too. Dogs, newborns, events, weddings. You name it, I was there. I didn’t stick to my prices always, or a schedule. I was taking anything and everything.
At the end of 2012, I had my first baby. I quit my day job to stay home with him and finished my Bachelor’s degree online. My perspective changed DRASTICALLY. I realized in that moment that being a mom was the MOST important job. If I wanted to continue to do photography, I needed to commit to it. Commit to it as a business. Commit to my prices. Commit to a schedule. If I was going to spend so many hours away from my sweet new baby, it needed to be worth it emotionally and financially.
In 2013 I specialized in what brought me joy, and what I was best at. Weddings and families. I stopped taking jobs that didn’t bring me satisfaction, and stuck to my prices. I committed to investing education and growing my business. I committed to blogging. Business boomed, and my life has never been the same.
COMMIT TO LIVING YOUR DREAMS!
by mari catherine vinton
Learn to say yes to your family
I hate to disappoint people. Even people that deserve it. 😉 For example, if we’re in a restaurant and the service has been completely crappy, I’m not going to say anything. If the people I’m with start complaining or throwing sass, I’m the one that adds in an extra tip and apologizes profusely when we leave. I’m pretty much a people pleaser, and hate to see people upset. “No” was not really in my vocabulary when I started business.
BUT I learned that saying “Yes” to everyone else was saying “No” to my family. When I was taking 4 sessions a week or working everyday to please my clients, I was saying no to my kids, my family, making dinner, cleaning the house, etc. The second I started turning away clients and raising my prices I was able to balance my life as a mother with my life as a business owner in an entirely new way.
(I mean, how could I say no to these cute faces?)
Simple ways to say YES to your family that don’t require the “No” word:
- Specialize in what brings you joy, makes the most income and what you’re best at.
- Raise your prices
- Schedule family days, work days and shoot days
When I started Kylee Ann Photography in 2011, it was just me. The photographer, blogger, editor, marketer, email-er, mom, wife, cook, housecleaner…everything. But now I have an entire team of amazing women that make life possible. The two areas that we see photographers struggling with is EDITING and MARKETING, which is why we are opening up the KAP team for you, too!
It’s not because you can’t do it all, but because you shouldn’t have to.
Where is your time best spent? Is it shooting and marketing? Or is it editing and designing pricing guides? Are you the ONLY one that can clean your house?? NO!There are things that others can do for you. Sometimes better and faster. Decide WHAT BRINGS IN THE INCOME and WHAT YOU ENJOY and WHAT YOU DO BEST. Outsource the rest. There are tons of people that will do your blogging, your editing, your album making, your mailing, your email answering. What do you absolutely dread? OUTSOURCE!
Spend 1 hour cleaning your house or Spend 1 more hour a week making money by shooting
Hire a Sitter
It doesn’t have to be full-time or even part-time. I run my full-time business with 4-8 hours of work-time in a week. In those 4 child-free hours I can accomplish more than what I was trying to do in a week while multitasking. My sitter can spend time with my kids while I work. When I’m done working, I can be a better mom because it’s all about them.
A week in the life…
- Sunday: Family Day. NO work. Church + time with family
- Monday: Sitter comes for 4 hours (I work) | After lunch, I get to play with my kids, make dinner, spend time with my family and usually hang with the girls because #bachelornight!
- Tuesday: Brody goes to Preschool | Piper and I run errands, play or clean the house | He comes home, we hang at home. I can make dinner, hang with my family. I answer emails and do any little tasks after bedtime. If Piper takes a nap, I let Brody play a game or watch a movie and I work.
- Wednesday: Kid Day! Work free. We leave the house and go on an adventure.
- Thursday: Brody goes to Preschool | Piper and I run errands, play or clean the house | He comes home, we hang at home. I can make dinner, hang with my family. I answer emails and do any little tasks after bedtime. If Piper takes a nap, I let Brody play a game or watch a movie and I work.
- Friday: Sitter comes for 4 hours (I work) | After lunch, I get to play with my kids, make dinner, spend time with my family and usually hit the town.
- Saturday: I’m off (unless its a wedding weekend) for an adventure with my family!
Cut out the fluff
I hate fluff. My presentations are always really to the point. My blogs are usually short and concise. I hate reading blogs or newsletters that are so fluffy that the point is hidden. This is how I am with my life too.
Simplify. Cut out the fluff in your life! Be intentional with your friends, your play dates, your marketing strategies. What are you doing only because others are doing it?
One year I fell into the Periscope trap. Everyone was doing it so it must be important?! TIME SUCKER, TIME WASTER. For every hour I watched, I may have got 1 minute of wisdom.
Is it necessary? Is it profitable? Does it bring you joy?
If the answer is no, cut it.
Get Organized, Create Systems & Set Schedules
Set realistic expectations & daily goals
As much as you want to, you can’t do it all. You’re not going to feel like a super mom or a super photographer every single day. Trust me. There are days when I just cry and give it all up. You will have disappointments, unproductive days and days where the to do list is longer by the end of the day then when you started it. Set your goals high, but don’t make your expectations too high. Be realistic. You have SO MUCH ON YOUR PLATE. You may look at other mompreneurs that appear to have it all together, but I promise no one really does. It’s HARD WORK. But you got this momma!
I make a to do list for the MONTH then I divide it out over the weeks and again into days…sometimes even hours. This helps me check small things off daily while reaching for bigger goals. Its important to check off something from your to do list daily even if it’s just SHOWER so you feel like you did something productive.
Find a support group
It’s lonely. Talking in baby talk all day while editing pictures alone in your house. Us Mompreneurs don’t have a lot of extra time for play dates at the park and mom group hangs. Join a place where you belong…even if it’s virtual.
The Kylee Ann Community is a place where you BELONG – whether you got your camera yesterday or you’ve been in the industry for 15 years. We believe in kindness, service and inclusion. We are photographers on a mission to support, teach and inspire others to go after their dreams. We don’t claim to know it all, but we love to share what we do know with all. Join our Facebook Group!