What if it’s too late to change your mind? Today’s episode is the third in a four-part series on my unpopular opinions about commonly-held beliefs in the wedding photography business. I’m sharing how to navigate change in your business, and how to coach yourself through the fear that comes with that change.
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.
Make sure you’ve hit that follow or subscribe button on your favorite podcast player to get notified each week as we air new episodes!
Subscribe on Your Favorite Podcast Player
Connect with Sabrina
This episode is brought to you by Root to Rise, a mastermind and retreat for female photographers where personal development meets business growth. During the four-month experience, students have weekly calls focused on goals, boundaries, money, and marketing. The program also includes incredible guest teachers, a private Facebook community, and weekly Voxer hours with individualized guidance and mentorship. Sign up today to join the waitlist.
Review the Show Notes:
The third unpopular opinion (1:18)
Something needs to change (2:55)
What is fear? (4:09)
Walking through the internal tension (6:43)
Making the change (7:43)
Follow your gut (8:36)
The Aligned Photographer save 10% with code: podcast
Review the Transcript:
Welcome to the shoot it straight podcast. I’m your host, Sabrina Gebhardt. 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 podcast friend. This episode is the third in a four part series of unpopular opinions. And this is going to be a great one. In case you missed the first two episodes in this series in Episode 56.
I unpacked unpopular opinion number one, and that is that your success as a photographer is defined by the number of sessions on your calendar. And in last week’s episode, I unpacked unpopular opinion number two all about selling digital files. Both of those were really great episodes, and you definitely want to go back and listen to them. If you haven’t already. Let’s jump straight into today’s episode. The third unpopular opinion that I want to unpack is that it’s okay to change your mind. In other words, you are never quote unquote too far along in your business journey to make a big change in what you’re doing, who you’re serving, what your mission is, or really anything at all. I see this so often. And the photographer’s that I coach, they started their business in one genre or in one way and have worked really hard to build things over the years that they feel stuck where they are like they’ve painted themselves into a corner. They’re doing so well on paper, they’re making good money working with clients, they enjoy getting consistent inquiries, but something doesn’t feel right. And yet, they keep pushing forward, because they think they have no other choice. But to keep doing the things that they have always done.
Maybe it’s continuing to photograph a niche that they no longer enjoy. Or maybe it’s not feeling confident in adding a new arm to their business that they’re interested in. Or maybe it’s pivoting from client work and into the education space. Or maybe it’s something as small as wanting to change their style of editing. Because what they’re doing doesn’t resonate with what they’ve always done. Or maybe it’s something about making a major price increase that would make them jump into an entire new bracket of clients. There are so many changes that could potentially be made in business. And yet, photographers have a really big time and really struggle with this. When I coach women through these conversations, the same thing comes up each and every time. They have an itch to make a change, something new has sparked their interest. They’re bored and uninspired. They have a gut feeling that something needs to change. And sometimes they feel like they’re just going through the motions.
As their business coach, I can see it super clearly looking from the outside in, I can see super clearly that something needs to change. And yet, when I start this discussion with them, I am met almost immediately with a fear response. Their responses usually go something like this. But I’ve always done it that way. Or my clients expect that from me. Or if I make that pivot, I will lose all my clients. Or what if no one likes or buys or wants this new offer, or even making that shift would be so massive and a lot of work and I don’t have time for that. Do you see how each of those statements is based in fear, based in unrealistic and imagined responses to something that hasn’t even happened yet. This is where I want to remind you what fear actually is. Fear is a natural response built into our brains that is intended to keep us safe. 1000s of years ago, fear was built to keep us physically safe from danger and predators and starvation.
Fear was protecting our physical bodies from physical harm. Fear was a warning to the unknown and potentially dangerous situations. Now, our brains allow us to be afraid for the same reasons. We experience fear to the potentially dangerous situations and the unknown. What I want you to hear is that second part, we experience fear of the unknown. And in business, the unknown is anything that is not something we are currently doing. This means in the current iteration of our business things feel safe and comfortable. And our brain thinks that there’s absolutely no reason to change what we’re doing, because things are just great the way they are. So when I’m coaching my students what I see is this battle between the brain being afraid of making a big change versus the heart knowing a change is needed. Today’s episode is brought to you by route to rise a four month mastermind and retreat for female photographers. That is where personal development meets business growth. During the four month experience, students have weekly calls focusing on a variety of topics that both better their lives and their businesses.
Think topics like goals, boundaries, money, and marketing, and many, many others. The program also includes incredible guest teachers, a private Facebook community and weekly Voxer hours, where you get individualized guidance and mentoring from me on topics that matter to you and your business. One of the best parts of the experience is definitely the three day in person retreat. Consider this the most fun girls weekend ever. We eat well do yoga, photograph three sessions, work through portfolio reviews, take headshots and build deep friendships, I can tell you that the women who have gone through this program have had some absolutely incredible transformations reached massive goals and changed the trajectory of their businesses. If you want to get on the waitlist to be notified when enrollment opens again soon, you can head over to the link in the show notes and get on that list. And now back to the episode.
So here’s exactly how I walk my students through this internal tension. Number one, I tell them that, unfortunately, your brain is lying to you. Yes, making a big change or pivoting is new, and the outcome is unknown. But you are not in physical danger. It seems so obvious.
But when we can talk our brains off the ledge, so to speak, it becomes really simple. I can almost always see a light bulb go off in my students eyes, I can see their shoulders relax and the clarity come through. You’re right, I am safe, I will be safe. I am not in danger. I don’t need to fear this. The second thing that I coached them through is that you can trust your heart and your gut. Your ideas and inspirations are divinely inspired. They are what’s meant for you. They are an indication of what’s out there for you if you’re willing to ignore fear and go after it. The last part of coaching my students through this process is to work through the steps, the actual to do list of what making this change would look like. You see so many times these changes feel so big and overwhelming that it’s hard for my students to even grasp where to start. And so they don’t. But when I work with them to determine a starting point, and all of the steps in between that they need to take in order to get from where they are now to where they want to be.
More often than not when we work through this process together, it begins to feel less overwhelming, and more doable. And that’s when the excitement comes back. And it’s also when fear gets put on the backburner because they can see the plan and the details and the steps and it doesn’t feel so scary anymore. So if this episode has resonated with you so far, if you’ve been toying with the idea of making a big change in your business, or doing something drastically different, but you’ve been hesitating, you’ve been telling yourself this story that this is not going to work, that it’s too far away from what you’re currently doing. That is too different from your current work or business to even go after it. If you have been stuck in fear of making this change, for whatever reason, listen to me now. It is never too late to follow your gut. It is never too late to follow your heart. Your business is never too far along to pivot into something new. Above all else, I need you to remember that this business is yours. It is your livelihood. It is your passion, it is also your future. Yes, a profitable business is important for sustainability.
But you grew a brand new business from nothing to where it is today. And you can do it again. I’m not saying that making a big change will be easier simple. I am not promising that you will be profitable and see wild success instantly. I cannot even guarantee that you won’t see a dip in income for a hot minute. As this pivot takes place. In fact, you probably will. But I can promise that if you don’t make this change that you are craving, you will will regret it. If you don’t follow your gut and your heart and push past fear you will never know what could have been yours. If you choose to stay stagnant in your business without shifting and pivoting over time, your business will not be sustainable in the long run, because you will burn out. Friend, I don’t want any of those things for you. And I don’t think you want them either.
So remember, it’s never too late to change how you are running your business. All right, my friend. That’s it for today. Join me here next week as I unpack the last unpopular opinion in this series and goodness gracious it is going to be a good one. 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.