Hi! Remember me? We're back and took quite a break! So, let me fill you in on all the things. Remember the chaos episode from earlier? Well that's where it started. I decided to take a month off due to a procedure I was having in June. What I didn't plan for was moving out of my studio. But I will say, I had a good month to prepare. Honestly, I was heartbroken, overworked, and in it so deep that I didn't want to take a beach vacation that we planned for at the beginning of the year. Let me explain.
My annual lease was coming to an end in May. So, naturally, I sent an email to the leasing office. Keep in mind that prior to the two years that I’ve been in this building, I have been waiting for a space to open up for the past 8 years. It was my dream studio.
The leasing office responded and said they are only doing month to month leases. Granted, there was new ownership that had taken over in the fall and non stop construction that was unavoidable going on in the building. I book out months in advance and not knowing if I would have another place to work was an added stress to the pressure that every tennant was feeling at that time.
I really needed that reassurance that I would have a place to work for the next 6 months. So, I hired a realtor and it was the best decision I made. We found a co-working space where everything was included, but the catch was that I’m going from a 458 square ft space to a 120 square foot room. But it was in a fabulous side of town, the parking was perfect for my clients, and it was right on the water.
I’m a follower of my gut, and even though this space is crazy small, I can make it work. And I have! I had my first two shoots last week and honestly I have more setups that I love that the other place couldn’t give me.
The transition at this stage in my year wasn’t easy. Like I said, I had a procedure in the middle of June that I was absolutely dreading. Everything was magnified. I talked to the leasing agent at the new studio to start my lease in July. Great! That was all squared away as I let out a sigh of relief. This space would wait on me until I was ready. So, until I had to move out of the old space, I didn’t want to stop working to go on vacation at the end of May. My husband was adamant on it, because he didn’t have much of a winter break. He told me he needed it and so I made space for it on my calendar and moved out a week prior to our vacation. While moving, I was surprised at how little emotions I felt during that day. It was shocking to me that everything that I put in and created in this space was easily cleared out within a number of hours. I remember telling myself, “It’s not the studio that created my dream of photographing women and helping them feel more confident, it was me. It just so happened that it was in this space.”
As we took down the final load and I swept for the last time. We took a video as a way to say farewell. I still felt nothing, just ready to go. Fast forward to this vacation. We went to Nags Head, NC for a week and stayed in a place on the beach. On the way there, we drove through West Virginia. I felt a weight lift off my shoulders. I could breathe again. My mind switched from work to play mode. It was the break I didn’t know I needed. And that scares me.
As an entrepreneur I have tendencies to over work myself. Prior to this vacation, I was diagnosed with non diabetic hypoglycemia. It’s mostly because I forget to eat, until I feel dizzy, confused, shaky, with a ton of brain fog. That was an indicator that I need to pay more attention to my body and my mental state. All I can think about is my business and where I want to take it. I didn’t realize how much I left on the sidelines in my life. I made a plan that when I would get back to work, it would be for 4-5 hours a day, then after that I can do whatever I want. Today, I’m working on that because it doesn't come overnight. But I am walking more, actually going to yoga classes, and allowing space for me.
Why am I sharing this? For the women out there that could be going through the same thing, but maybe not recognizing it like I did. Instead of a vacation, maybe you go for a walk in the park. I want to break the cycle of hustle culture, because yes, working for yourself and doing what you love is very thrilling, but it’s not worth my life.
Hey there! I'm Bethany. The Photographer, Coach, and Podcast Host behind
Boudoir Business Education. “All I want to do is photograph women in black and white and give them a beautiful and empowering experience.” Is what I wrote in my journal. Playing my idea off of a few trusted people, I was told, “There’s not a market for black and white boudoir photography”, “No one will pay for that.”, and “This is a weird idea.”
I followed my gut and went for it anyway. Right out of lock down, I had a new studio, was booked three months in advance, and haven’t looked back since. I love to photograph and empower women that understand my vision, love my work, and pay me what I’m worth. This process showed me that I can make my dreams possible and profitable. Now, I want to share what I learned (but in a much faster way) to build a thriving boudoir photography business.