THE ONE WHERE I TELL YOU ALL MY SECRETS + A FREE E-BOOK

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I started my college career knowing one thing, I would not become a teacher. I vividly remember standing in line at college orientation, it was that pivotal moment where you choose your major and without having any real plan… only the list of things I didn’t want to do spinning in my head, I looked over at the teacher line almost in defiance. It was a common thing to do in our town, become a teacher. But me, I would become an event planner… or a Public Relations Associate (whatever that means… though that is what my degree is in.) Or I would become a full time photographer, a dream not yet realized. There I was standing in the undeclared line, I had two years to decide, and I bunch of generals to take anyways. A degree in Communications ended up being the route I took. Honestly it just made sense to go in that direction, it was the thing that came naturally to me and Public Relations just seemed logical.


 

Learn from the experience of 9 different creative professionals. Grab your FREE E-Book and embrace your dream this year!

 

FLOUNDERING

I was on my way to earning a college degree, because well… that’s what you were supposed to do when I graduated high school. And I loved all my communication classes. I actually loved everything about them. I learned magazine layout while working on my college’s magazine, I spent time in our radio booth, I studied how different website’s communicate to their audience, and I took my first photography class. That photography class was my hook. That photography class inspired me to chase a dream. I spent my last year of college taking pictures of anyone that would step in front of my camera. I did my first photo sessions on film. I assisted at my first wedding.

During that first year out of college I lived in Florida and my first entrepreneur venture was unfolding. I was taking pictures, I was blogging about every picture I took, I was trying to figure out how to build a business, I was trying to create a client base, and all without progress. I was floundering. I was working full time as an office manager and trying to build a business on the side without having any real know how. What was I really doing? What was I going to do? This didn’t seem like a good plan… I wasn’t going anywhere. Then I thought, “well, maybe I’ll get my master’s and become a teacher…”

Not very long after that I moved back home and before diving in to a master’s degree I decided I would test the waters. I wasn’t wiling to sink anymore money into student loans without knowing if being a teacher was what I really wanted. So, I found a job as a paraprofessional (or teacher’s aid, or class room aid, whatever you want to call it.) I spent a little over a year working in a class room. Seeing all the ins-and-outs, the students, the teachers, the politics and a found out what I needed to know. I did not want to be a teacher.

HERE WE GO AGAIN

Next thing you know I’m married, living in California and still unsure of what I want to be when I grow up. So I did what anyone would do, I found a job. For clarity and to make this long story not so long, I quit that job after 8 months. It wasn’t a good fit and I was dealing with anxiety (something I had never experienced before), so I decided to do something different. I didn’t know anyone and driving in LA wasn’t for me, so I knew I didn’t want to pursue portrait photography. Who would I take pictures of? And I would probably have an anxiety attach just driving to locations anyways. I had seen a few people selling handmade items on Etsy, so I decided I would give that a try. I handmade zip pouches and wallets. I was half way good at it, but overtime I learned that wasn’t for me either. Time to try something else… I moved on the creating digital goods; calendars, worksheets… I wasn’t very good at that.

At about that time we were moving again… that’s what we do… we move. But this move was a little different. Tyler had accepted a contract position for the next 5 months. We didn’t know what would be happening at the end of those 5 months, so I was kind of in limbo. I was out ideas for what to sell on Etsy. I was blogging, but without any real niche. After 5 months Tyler was offered a full time job, it was time to find a place to live and I decided it was time to find a job.


 

PRACTICAL STEPS FROM 9 different creative professionals. Grab your FREE E-Book and embrace your dream this year!

 

DREAMING AGAIN

I hadn’t given up on any of my dreams… I had always dreamed of having a small business, but we had student loans to payoff. I needed consistent income so we could plow through the mountains of student debt we had. (If you’re reading this, do not take out student loans. There are so many others ways to do it.) So I went to work and started to dream again about what kind of business I would pursue. I tried to blog consistently, it was fun and it kept me moving forward trying different things. For a hot second I considered portrait photography again, but I just didn’t feel that was my strength. Because I was blogging consistently I was getting half way good at product photographing and that’s when it hit me. I would be a product and stock photographer.

I took my first client in 2016 and I slowly started to grow a little business. In 2017 I launched a new shop full of stock images and in 2018 I launched my stock photo library. I was reading book after book trying to learn about business, I was listening to podcasts, I was watching webinars, I was trying to do what everyone successful was doing. I was producing new photos every month. I was trying new things creativity, pushing myself to succeed. If the business was going to work it had to be profitable. It had to match my current income. I had to keep going.

WHEN IT’S TIME TO TAKE A BREAK

But, the business wasn’t profitable. Now, I’m going to lay it all out there… and I’ve buried the lead, so get ready. I’m closing the shop and the member library (if you’ve made it this far, bravo!) To be honest, I could keep going with it, I could keep trying, because I believe the business could be profitable, but I’ve come to a place of burn-out and I’ve come to a place where I’m not in love with it… It’s not fun. And if I keep going, there is a far greater chance that I’ll really resent it. I also plan to retire the Elah Tree brand. I’m not giving up, I’m not throwing in the towel… it’s just time to take a break and it’s time to dream a new dream. It’s time to start fresh. It’s time to rebrand.

A NEW DREAM

At the end of last year I decided that this year would be a year that I step back and refresh. Tyler and I have something we’re working on together, but we’re not in any hurry and the Elah Tree brand will probably be around for the next few months as I plan to blog throughout this transition. I wish I could tell you more about what’s next, but that’s for another post… plus, I like keeping you in suspense. 😉


 

PRACTICAL STEPS FROM 9 different creative professionals. Grab your FREE E-Book and embrace your dream this year!

 

IT’S NEVER TOO LATE OR EARLY FOR YOUR DREAM

So, why did I tell you all of that before telling you about this E-Book? Because I wanted you know that it’s truly never too early or late for your dream. It’s never too late to change direction. It’s never too early to get started. It’s completely okay to try different things and not have things workout. It’s okay to to start one thing, figure out it’s not for you, and try something else. I’ve tried so many different things and changed directions so many times, but I’m always willing to keep going. I’m always ready to embrace a new dream.

I’ve come together with 8 other amazing women and we’re all sharing our journeys with you. Practical steps to help you get started and things that really made a difference for each of us. We’re here to inspire and lift you up, so grab your copy and embrace your journey this year!

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Learn from the experience of 9 different creative professionals. Grab your FREE E-Book and embrace your dream this year!

 

ITS NEVER TOO LATE TO START LIVING YOUR DREAM