You guys, how is it already September? That means that summer 2019 is practically over, and we are well on our way to fall and winter. Which also means we are only 4 months for the year 2020.
I can remember as a kid thinking how sci-fi and far away the year 2020 sounded and seemed. Holy cow.
Okay, enough of that – let’s see what I learned this summer! Now, I’ve been participating in this series put on by Emily P. Freeman since the birth of this blog. In fact, the very first post was my first WIL post – Summer 2017!
Last season though, I didn’t write my list here. There were a lot of things going on personally, and if I’m being honest, I just wasn’t feeling drawn to write. So I skipped it. (More on that later in this post). But let’s get to this summer’s list!
1. Start before it’s perfect.
So if you don’t follow me on instagram (personal, photography, or shop) or facebook, then you might’ve missed where I announced I’m opening a tiny vintage online shop! Like next week! (Hopefully *fingers crossed*) Right here on my site! It has been a fun, learning experience and very challenging.
My comfort zone is waiting until something is perfect before I release it or show it to the world – editing pics, writing posts and captions, etc. But with opening this new online shop, I’ve learned that it doesn’t all have to be perfect before I hit publish. I accepted early on that I’m going to make mistakes, there are going to be some hiccups, and that I would be tackle those as they came.
Click the image below to sign up for a VIP discount to use on your first order!
2 . Shipping is expensive.
Speaking of learning new things about opening an online shop, shipping is spendy. I don’t know how Amazon and others do it. In fact, there was an article recently published about this very phenomenon – where Etsy feels the need to pressure sellers to offer free shipping to compete with “big box” online shopping, like Amazon. Which, in turn, alludes to the fall of small shop owners. (Insert major sad face)
3. Taking social breaks can beneficial.
Actually, taking breaks from things in general. So this was a little unintentional, but my phone has been at 63.9GB out of 64GB for like what feels like a year. I haven’t been able to really take many pictures or videos of what I’ve been doing, the places we’ve been going, the great food we’ve been eating (*gasp* I know, I’m a bad millennial), so in turn, I hadn’t been posting much on instagram. Which means my time spent on instagram or any of the like has been down.
The unintentional break forced me to look at what I was really doing and how I was doing it. I started to actually enjoy living life outside of an app on my phone and just being where I was with the ones there with me. Now, I have since bought a new phone (last weekend, actually), and I’ve been excited to be able to take pictures again (because that’s what I love to do – create things). But I’m coming back with a new perspective, and that’s always a good lesson learned.
4. Sometimes change and taking chances are a good thing.
I’ve never been one to take chances or risks. My college advisor used to joke that he was going to buy me a pair of big fuzzy dice as my graduation present because I didn’t like to take risks and I could never make a decision. I was never one to “roll the dice.”
So when I step out of what’s comfortable or what’s familiar, that’s a BIG step for me. For some, that’s just a normal action or something that comes naturally to them and they don’t think a thing of it. But not for me. So when I decided to sign up for this email list challenge a couple weeks ago (which was outside my comfort zone), I also decided to try a new email marketing provider.
And let me tell you, I’m so glad I did! I’ve been a MailChimper for the last couple years now, and it’s been good and okay thus far. But when I decided to try this new one and just see what it was all about, I never want to go back to MailChimp again. Flodesk is brand new and great for creatives, entrepreneurs, and anyone who wants an intuitive email builder. One of my favorite parts is you have an unlimited number of subscribers – no matter how they are counted or added to your list. Y’all, this is huge!
For a limited time (I think), you can sign up with my link and get half off for forever. Like for as long as you are with them! Click here for my link and ask me any and all your questions! I’m seriously loving this new system – so much so that I’m excited to write emails again and really start building my list! (Video tutorials coming soon!)
Here’s one of the forms I created in about 2 minutes – so easy and intuitive and they look so good!
5. Ask questions.
This one is very broad, but very simple. Ask questions. And get good at asking them. From curiosity questions to requests. If there’s something you don’t know and want to know, ask. If there’s something you want, ask. You don’t know what don’t you know, and you won’t know until you do. And sometimes, in order to get there, you just have to ask.
6. Community is always a win.
At least in my books. Since stepping into the new world of photography, I’ve realized (again) how important community is. When I first stepped into the writing world, I quickly learned how essential (unknowingly) having a community of like-minded people experiencing the same struggles, wins, frustrations is to have. Hope*writers is and has been such a great community of writers, speakers, and teachers for me in the writing world. (Hope*writer’s Day is next week – September 10th!)
Now I’ve found the very same to be true in the photography realm. I have found some amazing women who have either been through the same struggles or are going through them alongside me. And celebrating all the little (and big) wins together too! I recently met up with a photographer who I met at a workshop back in April, and I was so nervous to ask her on a “date!” Ha! Like what if she said no or thought I was weird or crazy or just didn’t like me like I liked her. (Who knew making new friends was so much like dating?? LOL!) But I had to ASK (refer back to #5 😊) in order to find out. And I’m so glad I did.
We met up at The Gray Lab (one of my favorite spots – studio and community co-working space all in one) in downtown Salem and just worked, edited, chatted, helped each other with weird presets in Lightroom, laughed, shared a beer (yes, this place has a beer/cider/coffee/all the snacks for you), teared up, talked about serious topics, all.the.things. Then, I needed a few new headshots so she graciously took some really amazing photos of me right before we parted ways and went off into our weekends.
Community always wins, folks. I hope you have found one for you, wherever you are in your life, whatever stage or venture. And if you don’t have one, well, this little online virtual community is always open and welcoming newcomers 😊💖
Well, that’s all for this season’s list! I’m off to Portland to celebrate a girlfriend’s birthday today (a new friend who I barely knew a year ago❤️ so thankful for our friendship) starting at the soaking pool at Kennedy School, then birthday brunch and capping the day off with dinner and drinks. It’s going to be grand.
I hope y’all have a great weekend and Happy Friday! 💕