Cupcakes & Lemonade: Avoiding a burnout

I promise we have all been there before.

About 2 1/2 years ago, I was on the verge of a burnout. I was exhausted. I didn’t find joy in photography anymore & I found myself wanting to quit Cupcake. After talking to my husband about it & really meditating on why I felt the way that I did, I decided to stick through that rough patch & continue. I am so happy I did. It’s something that many photographers do not talk about. Burnout. After a self evaluation, I came to realize when those burnout months actually occur. For 2015, my goal was to really be careful during those burnout months.

Here are a few things that have helped me personally get through those rough weeks/months.

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1. Make a list of the goals you want to accomplish for 2016- this includes personal, spiritual and business goals. I actually do this every November for the following year. I go on a camping trip and I write down all my goals for the following year and reflect on the year I’ve had. I don’t know if it’s being surrounded by nature, being disconnected from the  online world or what, but this has been a tremendous help to me.

2. Have you had a client that you just didn’t click with? Think back,  what was the true issue? Now, reflect on your awesome clients! What made them so great? Etc.

3. On your website, social media and blog: BE YOURSELF. Most of the brides who reach out to me, have something specific in common with me, that I have mentioned on my blog, social media, the about me section 😉 Anywhere from, our love of animals, traveling, food, and shoes!

4. Set your own boundaries. No more answering texts before 9am and after 6pm – or whatever time works for you. (Unless it’s a true client emergency of course!)

 That’s family time.

Honestly, this is something I’m always working on. Let’s be real though, sometimes a client or your bride has so much going on, they don’t even realize it’s 12 am & they are sending you outfit inspiration texts or a screenshot of the weather, etc.! Most of  time, when I receive a really late text, a few minutes later, I’ll get a “Omg. I’m so sorry it’s late! Go back to sleep!!” text. Lol! Show patience & treat your clients the way you would like to be treated always 🙂

 A perk of owning a business is setting your own schedule. Well, it’s awesome of course, but sometimes it can feel overwhelming. Why? Because it’s so easy to over work. There was a time when I was working 60+ hours a week. Now, you might be thinking- what, that’s crazy? I thought you only work on the weekends? Well, yea, most of my weddings occur during the weekends, my portrait sessions- lately have been scheduled during the week. During the busiest of seasons, my weekends are jammed packed. Most of my friends & family (still working with family, lol!) know that if we have an important family event during my busy wedding season- we need to schedule that in months in advance. Yes, even my own family & friends, have to schedule lunch and dinner dates- especially if it’s on a weekend.

But what about the time you spend, blogging, creating slideshows, social media posts, client meetings, texting with your clients, phone calls, oh & let’s not forget, editing! So, in other words, what type of schedule would you like to have? Maybe it’s shooting on the weekends only. Maybe it’s the opposite, perhaps you prefer to shoot during the week only & have your weekends free. What about editing, blogging, and answering emails? Can you set specific days/hours aside for that? If photography is your full time job or maybe you WANT it to be, think of your ideal schedule. Can you make it happen?

5. Shoot for you! Take a day off and go walk around a beautiful location or a go take photos with a friend, become a mentor. Just photograph for yourself. This is definitely something I want to work on!

6. Create me time. I know some of us are wives, mothers, students, some of us even have jobs and are trying to get into the creative field. No matter what though, always make time for yourself. Go to the gym, get a pedicure, hang out at target & get yourself a frap. No matter what you like do to relax & unwind, do that. Take that time for yourself. Recharge your batteries.

You will get out of the funk. I promise! I’m on my 6th year of photography (full time!) and some years are harder than others. Even if you feel lonely in this industry, you are not alone. Always remember that.

Hugs, Abi

Sweet comments make me happy.

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