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Why Did Those Clients Hire Someone Else?!

September 10, 2014 - Business, Photography

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Dear Jasmine,
My dream of becoming a professional photographer started nearly six years ago. A dear friend of mine started a similar dream just a couple of years ago. I'm happy for her, but it breaks my heart when I see her post photos from sessions with mutual friends. I can't help but wonder why those friends didn't come to me knowing that I've been doing this longer. Then the logical voice inside my head tells me to suck it and stop wallowing in self-pity because I'm sure my friend approached them and not the other way around. Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you've lost a potential client to a friend? How do you handle the heartache and (keeping it real) the jealousy?
Sincerely,
Wallowing & Jealous

Dear W&J,
A few days ago, I sat in my yoga class and saw a girl I met in the yogi training course I attended a few months ago. She unfurled her mat and began stretching, her long blond hair in a thick plait down her back. Then–out of nowhere–she went into a handstand. Gracefully, like she just floated her feet to the sky. I sat there gobsmacked. When we registered for the course, our abilities were at par with each other…but somehow in the two months since our graduation, she looked like a guru.

So here's the gamut of my emotions:
1. Awe – her form and strength blossomed out of nowhere.
2. Envy – I'm no where near her ability, and we started at the same time.
3. Rationalizing – She probably practices twice a day…she's maybe had private lessons…her hips aren't as wide as mine…she's probably not distracted running her own business! Ugh. Yes, I went THERE.

I created a litany of reasons why she was succeeding, but then I quickly realized those “reasons” were disguised as excuses. The fact remains that she has grown in an entirely new way and I need to celebrate her development (even when it stings). And, more importantly, her success didn't mean I was failing. We're both succeeding, just at different rates. These are two big points I want you to bear in mind as I answer your question…

So you're hurt because your friend (and novice photographer) is booking photo sessions with other friends. That hurts, I get it. But what you need to remember is another photographer's growth has nothing to do with you. Just because you've been shooting longer doesn't mean you'll be the first photographer to come to a client's mind. While experience plays a factor in getting hired for a shoot, it's one small piece of the decision process. Price, personality, quality, aesthetic preferences, timely turnaround, style, and availability all factor in why someone else is getting hired. In light of all these factors, I want you to take a step out of the wallowing mire.

The truth of the matter is this: your friends may hire you…they may hire your novice photographer friend…or, heck, they might hire someone else. You can't control why you're not getting hired, but you can control how you take care of the people who do hire you. When you focus on the good, on the people who believe in you, on those who appreciate you, they help you grow beyond your inner circle of clients. Don't spend your time questioning things out of your control. Instead, focus on getting better, taking amazing care of your current clients, and celebrating your growth…however small it feels.

Shine On,
j*

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Life is about to get a whole lot easier.  

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Oh, friend, it's time to start growing your business on Instagram.
  
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In addition to all this, you know you should be posting on social media, so how do you balance it all? 

I'm dedicated to your success, so download five free stock photos to use online...I hope this empowers you to attract dream customers along the way!

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