Scheduling Life and Your Photography Business (Video)
I love running a business but I find that my personal life takes a hit. How can I schedule both for success?
Check out TheLawTog’s tips on running both successfully in this quick video.
Everyone talks about balance like it’s something you can go buy at the store. It’s not something you can buy; it’s a commitment you have to make. It’s a commitment you have to conquer in your business. There is no sense in us running businesses if we’re going to have no balance to do anything else.
I’m not going to sit here and spew out to you that you need to outsource, and do this, and all that kind of stuff. My main tip for balance is making sure that you always put you and family first. Don’t click away. I know you’re getting ready to close the video. The thing is it’s so super important when you are on your deathbed, yes, we’re going to get a little bit morbid and think about this, but when you’re on your deathbed, are you going to wish you had responded to that email 5 seconds quicker? Are you going to wish that you had taken that one more session? Or are you going to wish that you had actually carved out time to be home on certain weekends or all weekends? Are you going to wish that you hadn’t missed little Timmy’s soccer game? This is what being a business owner and being in business for yourself is about, it is about striking the balance and putting family and yourself first.
Whenever I sit down to do my business plan for the “year”, I write in everything that I want to do for my family and myself first. If I want to say I’m going to lose 80 pounds this year, and I’m going to do it by this date, that goes on the calendar. I make the plan and say I’m going to work out 5 days a week at 8:00 a.m., that goes on the calendar. If I know I want to take a family vacation in July, which goes on the calendar. Every single thing, that is the very first thing that goes on the calendar before I put any other commitments that I have at all. That’s why people always ask me how I balance it, and this is a commitment that I make, as hard as I can.
Now, sometimes you have to be flexible and understand that business, in order to make ends meet, may come first, but as long as you put these policies in place and these restrictions on yourself, it’s easier for you to say no to other people. It’s easier for you to confine yourself to a schedule if you already have it blocked off.
When I schedule clients, I automatically put all the steps of the workflow onto the calendar and that goes around family time. If I’m going to commit to going to an educational opportunity, exact same thing, it goes around what is already on family time.
Now I know there’s some things that I can be flexible with, but that goes back to being with the family and everyone having a family vote to discuss it. Again, I don’t want to be on my deathbed wishing I had taken that one more session. I want my family to be there, and if I had spent too much time doing all that other stuff, they may not be there holding my hand if I put that priority over them.
So business comes second, family and you come first; that’s the first thing that goes on the calendar. It has its own color on the calendar, and that pretty much is set in stone with a little flexibility, and the flexibility is coming together and having a family discussion and then filling in the blanks with everything else.
If I need to raise my prices in order to make ends meet because I need to work around family time, then I need to do that, that’s okay, being a business owner. I’m the boss, I can do it, and balance is what is important because if I’m not doing this for my family, and myself then who am I doing it for? My clients will appreciate it, but my clients won’t be there in 50 years, hopefully, my family will.