What if you had the time and space to breathe while running your business? Today’s episode is inspired by words of wisdom shared by my instructor in a recent yoga class. Her words resonated with me so much that I knew I had to share her message of moving at a pace that sustains us – and our businesses – over time.
The Shoot It Straight Podcast is brought to you by Sabrina Gebhardt, photographer and educator. Join us each week as we discuss what it’s like to be a female creative entrepreneur while balancing entrepreneurship and motherhood. If you’re trying to find balance in this exciting place you’re in, yet willing to talk about the hard stuff too, Shoot It Straight Podcast is here to share practical and tangible takeaways to help you shoot it straight.
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Review the Show Notes:
Getting back to in-person yoga (0:48)
The lesson that spoke to my heart (3:54)
Breathe through balance (6:15)
What if we added in a pause? (7:34)
Leave room for growth (10:17)
The Aligned Photographer: Sign up today with 10% off exclusively for podcast listeners with the code: podcast
Review the Transcript:
Welcome to the shoot it straight podcast. I’m your host, Sabrina Gephardt. Here I will share an honest take on what it’s like to be a female creative entrepreneur. while balancing business motherhood and life myself along with my guests will get vulnerable through honest conversations and relatable stories because we’re willing to go there. If you’re trying to find balance in this exciting place you’re in yet willing to talk about the hard stuff to to shoot it straight podcast is here to share practical and tangible takeaways to help you shoot it straight. Welcome back to the shoot it straight podcasts, my friends. Today’s episode is a bit of a story that I want to share. So let’s just jump straight in. I took a yoga class a few weeks ago, and if you’ve been in my orbit for a while, this really shouldn’t surprise you.
I love all types of self care and exercise. And I especially love yoga. In fact, I love it so much that my four month mastermind is named route to rise, which is inspired from yoga terminology. Anyway, there was a time in my life where I went to yoga almost every day in a studio setting because that was my primary type of self care at the time. And well, I just love yoga that much. But then the pandemic happened. And then we built a home gym, which don’t get me wrong. Having a home gym has been super incredible. And getting to use it every day is such a bonus in our life. But I just sort of fell out of the habit of going to take yoga in a studio setting. And if I’m being honest, I also felt a little guilty paying for a class when I have the space at home to practice yoga for free. Here’s the thing though, if you’ve taken a yoga class before, you know that there’s a pretty massive difference in going through a yoga class online, in a home gym by yourself, versus attending a group class where the room is warm, and there are other people there and the energy is positive. And you’re being led through a juicy class by an instructor in person. Truly, it’s a night and day experience. Anyways, a few weeks ago, I finally got back to yoga in person.
I’m currently recording this in the summer. And as you can imagine, my schedule is pretty dang inconsistent. Because every day feels completely wild. I’m really hoping to get back into a regular weekly yoga class after school gets started. But that’s not the point of the story. Anyways, I went back to in person yoga for the first time in about three years, I was so excited, I signed up for a class at a studio that I’ve never attended before with an instructor that I’ve never taken a class with before. If you’ve never taken a yoga class before, or if you’re unfamiliar with how the practice works, there’s an instructor who guides you through the practice, they get to choose all the poses, and the timing and the cadence of the entire class. And it’s quite common for the instructors to talk during the practice. Oftentimes, this is inspirational or sharing a story about things that are generally applying to what’s happening in class. So in this particular class, there was a moment when the instructor said something that I thought was so incredibly important and valuable. And that’s what I’m going to share with you today. So we’re already an hour into this class, we were all drenched in sweat and feeling so good. And we were told to do one of our final poses, the instructor asked us to stand in tree pose, while our one foot that would normally be planted on the floor was going to be balanced on a cork yoga block instead.
This isn’t the hardest thing in the world to do, especially for somebody like me who’s been doing yoga for years and years. But what she said while we were holding this pose spoke to my heart and I knew immediately that I was going to share it on the podcast. This is what she said, while we were holding the pose, it’s important that we breathe through balance, and then move on to create sustainability. And to make sure that we leave room for growth. Of course, she was talking about our physical bodies in a yoga class, balancing on the cork yoga block, creating sustainability so that we wouldn’t fall off while we held the pose and leaving room for growth because if you know what tree pose is, the end involves putting your arms stretched out and stretching your spine and your arms and extending your body to create room for growth in your joints. What she said is definitely true in a yoga class, but it’s also really, really true as a business owner.
It’s so important that we take time to breathe as we create balance. And then it’s important to make sure that our business is set up for sustainability and long term success all the while making sure that we have room for growth and opportunities. So let’s break this down just a bit further. friend if you have a brand new photography business for or maybe you’ve been in business for a few years, but you aren’t thriving. I think I can help. Let me introduce you to my new course the aligned photographer. In this self study course, you will learn practical and tangible ways to lead with your heart so you can focus on capturing your magic. In these seven modules, you’ll learn things like pricing for profit, marketing, setting goals, creating a sustainable schedule, email marketing, building boundaries, and more. Plus, there are three incredible bonuses built in to really take things to the next level. Lessons are a mixture of video lessons, audio trainings, and printable worksheets. Plus, every module has a resources page full of free things to help you take the topic even deeper. The best part, in my opinion, are the live monthly q&a calls where you show up and get all of your business questions answered by me.
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First, we need to breathe through balance, I’d say that this is where a lot of female creative entrepreneurs get stuck. They start their business and they take on all the things and they immediately go 90 miles an hour straight into overwhelm. There isn’t time for pause, there isn’t time for self care or reflection, there isn’t time to make sure that things feel good. And as we try and rush through and quote unquote, reach success at this frantic pace. This is where I see a lot of my students in burnout, they made the decision to start a business and they started off so excited and energized and dove straight into all the things. Adrenaline kept them running for as long as possible. And then at some point, their body hit a wall.
They found themselves in a place that is extremely unbalanced. They had only been focused on work and growth and success and what they needed to do to get this new business off the ground and find clients and make money and market themselves. They had accidentally forsaken their families and their relationships and their self care and their mental health along the way, which is an extremely imbalanced situation. But if we look at the words of my yoga instructor, that we should be breathing through balance. How could this situation have been different? What if instead of rushing to do all the things and checking off all the things and setting all the goals and reaching all the goals and push push, push strive strive strive? What if instead, we added in a pause to breathe? What if there was a check point at which we took a pause? took a breath to see if we felt unbalanced? How would things have looked if we approached a new business in this way instead?
Yes, things might have grown and gone at a slower pace. But we would certainly avoid the burnout and the overwhelm. Because when we take time to pause and breathe, and we realize that things have become extremely imbalanced, we give ourselves the opportunity to self correct, we can take a few days off, we can pull back from marketing or social media, we can lean into time with our family and friends, we can allow extra time for space for self care and reflection. And then we’re able to find that balance again. The second part of my yoga instructors words were to create sustainability. Again, she was referring to the physical action of balancing in tree pose while standing on a cork yoga block. But when we look at it through the eyes of business, we see another important step, creating sustainability for long term success. You might think this is similar to taking a pause and breathing through balance and it is but consider this, the long term version of that. Being a creative entrepreneur, I’m sure you know that not all seasons will feel balanced. Even at our absolute best. We still have seasons of hustle and seasons of rest. And that’s as it should be. But what can we do to make sure that we’re moving at a pace in which we can sustain our business for the long term that might look like outsourcing and getting help. It might look like raising your prices and paying yourself more so that you can work less. It might look like taking a sabbatical every summer. It might look like hiring a business coach to help guide you as you grow.
It might look like changing your offers to align with your heart. It might look like turning down certain clients that don’t make you feel good or are always a struggle. When you look at where you are in your business today. Can you keep going if everything stays the same? Is your business sustainable? Will you be happy? Or do things need to change? Being honest with yourself here is so important because if you try and sugarcoat your own and answers. If you try and just keep pushing, despite your unhappiness, you’re overwhelmed and your frustration, your business is not sustainable. If you keep ignoring how you feel, and you keep pushing forward, either your business will fail, or you will, the last part of my yoga teachers instructions, were making sure to leave room for growth. And again, she was referring to physically being in tree pose and being able to extend our arms and stretch our spine and create room in our joints. Trust me, it feels amazing.
But when we look at this through the eyes of a creative entrepreneur, it’s different. Does the schedule that you have created for yourself allow room for you to explore and grow? Do you have time to join that course? Or mastermind or work with that coach that you want? Do you have time to travel to conferences? Or work with people who are inspiring to you? Do you have time to take up hobbies that have absolutely nothing to do with your business? And more importantly, do you have time to simply slow down and enjoy your day? And take a look around? I know that seems like a silly question. But at the pace that so many entrepreneurs are running, they can’t even see what’s going on around them. They have blinders on. And those blinders are causing them to miss opportunities, opportunities for growth, opportunities for new passions, opportunities for doors to open. And that’s a real shame. As creative entrepreneurs we like to create, we like things to change and more, we like to stretch ourselves. We like to reinvent, we come up with new ideas. And yet, if we don’t have space in our calendar space, in our schedule space in our day, to allow ourselves to simply live to simply notice the world around us or to take on opportunities to grow intentionally, we are setting ourselves up for perpetual boredom. And honestly, is there anything worse to a creative person than being bored with what they’re creating with being completely bored with their business with not enjoying things that they were once passionate about anymore?
So as I wrap up, I want to leave you with the words one more time. It’s important that we breathe through balance, and then move on to create sustainability. And to make sure we leave room for growth. I hope that these words have inspired you as much as they inspired me whether you are a yogi or not. I hope that the translation makes sense to you. I love these words. And I thought they were so profound. They spoke to my heart and I wanted to pass them on for me to you. That’s it for today, my friends. We’ll see you next time. Thanks so much for listening to the shoot it straight podcast. You can find all the full show notes and details from today’s episode at Sabrina gebhardt.com backslash podcast. Come find me and connect over on the gram at Sabrina Gebhart photography. If you’re loving the podcast, I’d be honored if you hit that subscribe button and leave me a review. Until next time, my friends shoot it straight.