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Holy snakes, here it is. The podcast, gasp. But in all seriousness, I achieved this 2020 goal a month before the year ended and I’m celebrating. Want to know the secrets on how I achieved it? It’s easy, I got my thoughts down on paper and I took a leap into pure vulnerability, shared those thoughts with someone else and straight-up asked to be a guest speaker. I had EVERY REASON inside my head not to do it like “What if she says no? What if I choke? What If I curse? What if I make myself look like a total fool?” Guess what, all those were possible fears, but not good enough of a reason to stop me. Fun fact about me, words and public speaking are not my gift. I get large works mixed up and I barely passed basic English my senior year of high school. Sorry mom. I honestly wish I was better, so I stepped outside my comfort zone. It wasn’t perfection by any means, but it’s there. So check out the episode and show notes below.

1. What has your photography journey looked like so far?
I just celebrated my four year anniversary as a photographer (yahoo, cue the extra shot of espresso) and It’s been a whirlwind. I feel like I’ve been hustling so hard to find my ideal clients and creative edge, which is all way harder than you think! I feel like these are the things I will always be working on while I create this art, but I feel like my business is moving in the right direction. I finally feel like it’s authentically me!

2. How did you realize balance was important? Oh golly, which time! I feel like the Lord has gracefully tapped me on the shoulder and said, “You need to slow down, I have this,” or “Your identity is not in the number of jobs or the income you make.” I feel like I’m always ‘seeking’ balance, but I know with all my different cups, wife, mom, business owner, one will always be a little fuller than the other. But I think recognizing the lack of balance and actually speaking it aloud is where the awareness and shift will actually change.

3. What are some actionable tips you’ve taken to balance your work and also life as a mama? This is such a good question because I feel like we can always talk the talk. But when we actually put something into place and strive to make it a habit, that’s when we truly see His work and the fruit of it all.

My tips:

1. Say it out loud to someone. When I’m overworked, serving everyone else around me, and spreading myself too thin, I tell my husband. He helps me process through the ‘why’ I’m overworked. Hello Enneagram 2! I feel like this just brings it into the light.

2. Say no now so you can say yes later. I heard this somewhere and now I can’t remember where. I’ve had to really work on this because I’m such a doer and giver that I want to say yes to everyone and everything, but I can’t. My family and business suffer the most when I don’t prioritize. I think, just understanding our own capacity is such a gift and it takes practice. Trust me, I have failed a lot in this area!

3. Protect your Sabbath! I feel like we go into certain seasons really prepared for this and others we don’t. This last fall wedding season was the hardest. My husband coaches high school football, I’m a full-time mom of two kids, and it just happened to be my first big solo wedding season! We were a mess and it was the perfect storm. We were rundown, short with one another, being loose with our budget, and serving everyone else except each other. Woof. It was one of the biggest lessons we had to learn as a family and a business owner because we did such an awful job at resting and it showed in our marriage the most.

4. What are some boundaries you’ve set for your business to keep the balance? Like saying “no” to things? I don’t take as many family sessions right now. I love kids but those sessions don’t fulfill me as much. I limit my time spent on social media. For example, I no longer keep Facebook on my phone and check Instagram on a limited basis. Lastly, no checking my email in bed! Oh, and I’ve limited my weddings for 2021

5. Any other advice you’d like to give to someone who may be experiencing burnout right now? Rest, stay healthy, and stay accountable. This season isn’t forever and just know you’re not alone. As women and business owners, I think we all experience burnout one way or another. Whether we’re chasing kids around the house, trying to find the perfect heel for a business meeting, or hiking a mountain with a bride and groom to get the best shot, we all experience burnout when we overextend. The Lord granted us a day of rest, so let’s take it!

Exodus 16:23 – 23 He told them, “This is what the Lord commanded: Tomorrow will be a day of complete rest, a holy Sabbath day set apart for the Lord. So bake or boil as much as you want today, and set aside what is left for tomorrow.”29: They must realize that the Sabbath is the Lord’s gift to you. That is why he gives you a two-day supply on the sixth day, so there will be enough for two days. On the Sabbath day you must each stay in your place. Do not go out to pick up food on the seventh day.”

Matthew 11:28-29 Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

Books on my nightstand hoping to read moving into 2021:
Business Boutique by Christy Wright
The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry by John Comer
White Fragility by Robin Diangelo