I feel like I’m the weirdest combination of dreamer and realist. Like SO to the core purely both of those stances and it’s always been something very hard for me to deal with. I want to dream BIG but the realist part of me says, “remember Amanda, it probably won’t happen anyway” — and in the past this actually prevented me from dreaming and listing my goals out. Even from setting them period, sometimes. There was a point in my life where I actually said — I know I have never had the talent for anything big or anything that could make me money to support my family well, so I’m planning on just floating through and working 60 hours a week to make ends meet if I had to.

I am so glad that I met Mike Hedgepeth.  He actually did something incredible sort of along the lines of saving my life in a way. He loved me, and because I had just come out of a relationship where I was not loved…he added value back to my existence. He made me feel important. He made me feel like I was a worthwhile human being and it changed everything for me. Enter dreams, enter photography, enter business owner. It all happened for me.

There was a stagnant year between the 2nd and 3rd year in business where I just kind of got used to going through the motions and got very comfortable with not pursuing anything bigger than just the task at hand because it meant not being turned down, rejected…failing. Not submitting anything to be published, not connecting with vendors. I was scared. I had been through falling outs with people that really scarred me and back then, I was still worried and fragile and insecure.

The beautiful and exhilarating 180 that has been my life experience for the past two years has been unexpected and so, so welcome. Grudges let go, stress dissolving. Fear dissipating before my own eyes. I’m definitely WAY more emotional when it comes to sentiment because of the two little girls in my life that changed my world..but damn if I have not become such a brave and bold version of my former self. How far have I come from the girl who walked by the Dunkin Donuts next to Rogers dorm at ODU to pick up the change off the ground. The girl who had to flirt with strangers sometimes at Pizza Inn in hopes of getting some of their food from them because I couldn’t afford to even buy my own some weeks. I mean seriously– I’m just keeping it real…life was hard and rejection was a CONSTANT. Even my own grocery bags hanging miserably by a thread from my handlebars when I had to ride a bike a couple miles to the store for the common staples and anything I could afford…bursting at the seams and then almost every time at least one of them all over the sidewalk when I got back to the 40 streets on Colley. Even my grocery bags used to reject and fail me.

You know what the difference is between then and now? Preparedness. Thick skin and a GAME PLAN. OH the game plan. Back then, I was never ready to handle the issues. Today I tell my former self, you should have brought a back pack for the heavier items and left the lighter ones on the handle bars. If you dropped them, instead of sulking pick them up and KEEP MOVING. If you have to walk the rest of the way, then walk. Getting it DONE is the matter at hand.

And submission and business goals are the SAME THING to me now! Recently at the Outer Banks Winter Workshop– I showed my attendees the screen print from what my Submissions email inbox folder looks like.

NOT A FIT
NOT A FIT
NOT A FIT
NOT A FIT
ON HOLD
NOT A FIT
NOT A FIT
ACCEPTED
ETC

SO, many, NOS FIRST. This is something the old me couldn’t handle. Being turned down, rejected, unwanted. Not talented enough. Not valuable enough. That’s not TRUE and isn’t what it means if you are rejected but to the sensitive Sally’s like me..it feels this way.

What if you wrote your goals down — on paper. What if you made yourself accountable for wanting to reach things you thought were out of reach? Here’s where the dreamer and realist stuff comes into play. I remember Justin and Mary speaking about writing your goals down and aiming for something years ago. I thought– that is AWESOME as an idea but I personally don’t think it would work for me. Just because I write it doesn’t mean it will happen.

I did it, and it did.
It did TEN FOLD.

I knew once I told the world what I wanted that I would have to actually try to make it happen, and now my website is shining proof of the efforts I’ve put forth 100% on my own all on my own behalf. I have no secretary doing this work for me. I am the secretary, the CEO, the treasurer, the shooter, the editor…I’m all of it. I stopped being too scared to write down my goals and I said them OUT LOUD on my blog and Facebook page two years ago and they came true.

What if you just decided to give it a try? The worst that can happen is that you don’t achieve them this year– but there are always a goal you have set for yourself and have to work toward no matter what…and they could change. You may want to be on a certain blog SO badly and then change your mind down the road and get the new one you wanted! Just try to write down FIVE business goals for 2015 and even making one happen is HUGE! 🙂 XOXOX

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Posted by:amandahedgepeth

<p>Hey there! We’re a husband and wife team who has the honor to document inspiring wedding days for the most cheerful couples around. We have three daughters lovingly referred to as the mermaid mafia and we love nothing more than salty beach days, laughing as much as possible and living the simple, good life.</p>

5 replies on “Write Goals Down | Photography

  1. GET IT GIRL!!!!! Love you and all your honesty about how you got to where you are… what hasn’t stopped you! Not many people are brave enough to put it all out there or brave enough to remember the steps they took to get where they are! You not only are brave enough, you embrace it and let it continue to shape and mold you in a positive way!

  2. I have been coming to your blog for a few months now. I have been in the start-up of my photography business for a few years but not pursuing it seriously but this post was everything I never knew I needed to read!
    Thank you for sharing and for challenging. After getting rejected so much, I believe I gave up on the inside, convincing myself that I just wasn’t good enough. I even cancelled my subscription to submit my work. But this post let me know I wasn’t alone and to pick it up and keep going.
    Thank you times a million!

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