Recently I have been taking courses that focus on the branding aspect of my business. I am always looking for ways to grow and become a better version of myself as a NJ wedding photographer, that includes learning business tips outside of the camera. I recently have read several books that coordinate with the courses I have been taking and one consistent message is over overwhelmingly clear: authenticity. Social media is both a blessing and a curse. We are bombarded with sales, information, personal emotions and so much more every minute of the day. This has made social media become flooded with noise in my opinion. In developing my brand I am faced with a tough decision: wanting to be on social media less and keep my life private to myself and the need to show clients and potential clients my most authentic self since I am my brand and genuinely wanting to see the stories of my clients and friends lives. In the coming months I am going to make a genuine effort to show more of my personality, quirks, motivations and how I am working on my year long plan to live a more authentic life.
The first thing I mentioned in my original Being Your Most Authentic Self in 2017 blog is meditation. I was floored by the response I got from this blog. As a business owner we do things like check how many people actually read our blogs and come to our website often to make sure it’s worth our time. My blog about being my most authentic self was one of the most read in a long time so I decided to expand on it and do separate blog posts for each one of my goals I mentioned!
I am lucky that I don’t suffer from anxiety. The occasional “Ummm I am really overwhelmed with things and about to freak out” – yes. Actual anxiety – no. I do however suffer from terrible bouts of insomnia. There was a point in my life that it was at it’s absolute rockiest, I would sleep about 10 hours total a week. It was terrible. Sleep deprivation makes you do and think crazy things. When you aren’t sleeping you have more time to think about things and get overwhelmed. It was at this time I started researching switch words, yoga and meditation. I can’t say I took any of it serious or stuck with it, but it played around in my mind. Fast forward to January 2015. In my 5 year quest to live a better life I went back to meditation. I downloaded free podcasts and used them daily. It took a few weeks but it really began to stick with me and I started feeling overall better. I ebbed and flowed with my dedication for about 18 months. It’s something I did often but was not practicing daily. I try to mediate several times a week still and I am often successful. Since December 2015 I have upped that number from 5 times a week to at least 10. I still suffer with insomnia and find that meditation at 2 am when I can’t sleep is the best thing I can do for myself. I slip on these super amazing blue tooth sleep mask headphones and listen to my mindfulness meditation app ($60 for the full version).
Meditation has helped me quiet the noise in my life. It has helped me visualize the things I want while releasing the negative feelings associated with the thoughts and relationships I don’t. Meditation has helped me also realize it’s OK to be quiet, if I am in a conversation I don’t agree with – I don’t need to say anything. There is no need to attend every argument you are invited to. Finding a quiet and peaceful place in my day has made overall life feel more manageable and calm. Listening to my inner voice and being true to myself had been a beautiful way to help live an more authentic life. Where ever we move next I have promised myself a space for a meditation alter. The positive impact it is having on my mind and soul have truly made me into a better person and business owner.
I chose to use this image for a reason. It’s not a technical masterpiece by any means. It’s a ship passing the sunset off Beach Haven. After a family session on this particular night I pulled down a random street to catch a few images of the sunset. I ended up meeting an awesome family and couple. The couple had been searching for a wedding photographer for a specific venue. I had worked at the venue several times but didn’t come up in their google searches. This couple ended up booking me for their wedding. The internet – with all the information in the world couldn’t connect us – but a beautiful sunset and simple chance meeting did. Isn’t how the Universe works sometimes a beautiful and amazing thing?