Q&A WEDNESDAY - 12/02/09

I was going to post a few questions but if everyone doesn't mind... I have my own question that I would really love to get your feedback with!!

How do you get it all done and stay organized? And I'm not just talking the business, I'm talking the whole entire balancing act!! I know it's the busy time and just as the phrase may or may not hint... That means I will be more busy then usual (duh me!). But I want to know if you have found any helpful hints, tricks, secrets, magic spells... PLEASE SHARE!

Between shoots, editing (and that the biggest part of the pie), print and album orders, the kids, a great hubby (who is often waiting for me to finish "just one more thing", social engagements, doctors appointments, laundry, dishes, grocery shopping, and unfortunately being required to fit in sleep at some point... I'm struggling. Mainly because there just isn't enough time to do it all right now and the very last thing I want or am willing to do is neglect my family. Add to that trying to keep up with this blog and well my plate is over flowing. The thing is, although I do want to take less clients (and have already put everything in motion to do that) I don't want to stop doing any of what I'm doing. Except the cleaning, and that is being taken care of now so I do get to at least take the deep cleaning off the "to do list".

So I'm putting the question out here... How do you keep things in balance?

(yes, after running up stairs to check a date I returned to that... All I could do was laugh, oh yes! And buy a fridge lock!)


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Amazing how it is so cute in a picture, but can be so enraging in person.

    I, too, am struggling with piling too much on my plate at one time. And unfortunately, I feel like I am missing in the holiday, family-time cheer. The most important thing I am learning through this is what to do/not do for next year. I now know to set very strict boundaries, so that I don't over-extend myself. I am also trying to learn the phrase, "No, I can't do that." (I haven't used it yet, but I dream about it.)

    I have a set schedule of what I have to accomplish during the day in regards to my family: Monday-laundry, Tuesday-clean house, Wednesday-bedding laundry, Thursday-grocery shopping, Friday-deep clean. Once I get that done I don't feel guilty about spending time editing during the day. But if I don't get my mom stuff done first, I feel guilty and stressed the rest of the day.

    I have also started editing less pictures. I have discovered that not every picture has to have a black and white counterpart. That has helped me.

    Maybe the biggest thing you need to do is take a break. Go on a walk, get a pedicure, go on a date with your husband. Maybe a breather is all you need to clear your head, take a deep breath, and say, "I can do this."

    Oh, (and I know this is going on too long), but have you ever thought of a guest blogger? Have someone else help out with the Go4Pro blog.

  3. Kalli you are so right! I thing the biggest lesson I'm learning right now is to set a schedule and more importantly to stick to it!! I definitely felt like I missed out on the whole month of November and most of October too. I only have a couple shoots in Dec. and I'm not excepting anymore and I'm still going to be slammed just trying to finish up everything from November.
    Luckily, I do get to have dates every Friday night with my hubby, which is soooo nice but secretly (in the back of my mind) I'm thinking about all those deadlines lurking on my computer back home. Uugh!
    As for a guest blogger... That idea has already been set into motion and I can't wait for when I get to introduce her... If anyone else ever has something that they want to share I'd LOVE to except guest posts!! :)

  4. Leah, it is HARD! I slammed myself when things got busy last spring, and wasn't happy at all, and I was working full-time. I found out that I can't do two senior shoots and a wedding in one week followed by a week with a four hour commercial shoot and two more seniors. I was soooo overwhelmed. A few things that have helped me...

    Time swapping. I have too many friends that I don't want to charge, but I can't give my family time away to them while they are home with their families. I don't offer full blown shoots to them now that they helped me build my portfolio (he, he) and I don't edit for them unless they are doing my housework! I'm not kidding! I also have them go through the sooc's and pick like 20 images to narrow it down for me, as that is a time consuming part of the process for me. I don't do these freebies more than once a year per friend, because I had some friends calling like everytime they got a new outfit and wanting my Saturday mornings. So I had to reign it all in. Then, they'd love the pics, but they wouldn't even print them before they were asking for another shoot. I just couldn't do that anymore. It's hard to transition from the portfolio building process to the money making because people get used to using you at a certain price, you know? That's a good question, how do you transition?

    I also grocery shop online. in my neck of the woods. It is a lifesaver. They bring all your groceries into your kitchen, they don't accept tips and everything is separated into frozen, refrigerated and pantry bags. It is amazing. You can still get all their deals, I usually pull off free delivery and I can shop in a few minutes now, because you can use previous orders for your current order, and just tweak a little bit.

    I set firm boundaries, shoots after Thanksgiving for pre-Christmas needs, I'm not super firm on timeframe, I say around 2 weeks for proofing, etc.

    I have also gotten better about narrowing down the edits and I try to shoot more carefully, like only if I think it is a good shot. I come home with less, and edit less but still get all the good stuff I used to get.

    It's hard! Your website has saved me a lot of time!

  5. i am definitely struggling with this ....
    some great ideas here -
    i am trying to say no, trying to expose better in camera, and making mandatory family and date nights;)
    i will keep reading for more ideas from you and others...
    thank-you for making me feel better about my struggles... i am not the only one ;)