What is intuitive business, why does it matter, and why do I keep talking about it?
It's the solstice today. I love this time of year. It's not only the beginning of Capricorn season, which is when I was born, the day after Christmas, but it is also a time of reflection. It's a time of going inward. It's a time of really looking at our shadows. It's a time of embracing the darkness. There is nothing evil or bad about the shadow, about the dark, because without it, we wouldn't have any idea if we were on track or not. So, I love this time.
I love looking at what's worked in my business, what hasn't worked, and what's working in my personal life. I explore what needs attention. I think it's a really wonderful, fun time to just think and process integrate anything you've read or learned. It's a time to just really kind of aggregate and integrate everything.
It's a time to look forward at the year ahead and decide how you want to emerge when the light starts to grow and when we move into warmer weather and longer days.
So that's what I'm doing. I think this ties into intuitive business because I get a lot of questions from folks. It's been years and years and years that I've been coaching and teaching and I'm happy to help if I have the answer. But what I'm discovering is that there are a lot of questions about business that I can't answer for people.
And it might be something like someone canceled their shoot a few days before because their family member is sick. Should I ask them for the rest of their money? Because contractually it's due. Or this client wants to shoot in the middle of the day, but I don't really enjoy shooting in the middle of the day.
Those two examples I could give you feedback on, but intuitive business is really tapping into what makes YOU happy. What lights you up? What feels good to you? Some people might be very by the book and feel comfortable honoring the contract as it's written, regardless of circumstance. Other folks might be like, “you know what, sounds like they're going through a hard time. I might lose a little money, but I'd rather take the high road and just cut my losses.”
Neither one of those approaches is right or wrong, but I can't tell you which one to do. Only you can figure that out for yourself.
I've talked about this a little bit on our Clubhouse. We chat every Monday at 2:00 PM central in clubhouse, in the photo business health group. And I've been talking a lot about how I shifted my availability to at least for my outdoor shoots to only be available during the evening. And the reason I did this is because I was finding that I had so much joy showing up to sessions during that sort of.
Golden hour into Twilight. And I was having a lot of anxiety showing up at sessions in the middle of the day. Most of my clients are families looking for just a few great photos and I know what conditions I need to achieve that. So it felt good to me to make that shift might not feel good to you.
So I encourage you as you look back on this year, as you turn inward to really bring your intuition to the front of your business next year, to trust yourself. Listen to what feels good, listen to what sucks.
If you're hating answering emails and you're hating going to shoots, there's a really good chance that you're not doing the kind of photography or even the kind of work that you should be doing.
This shouldn't be like pulling teeth. Once in a while you hit a road bump, but that's the shadow. If the shadow wasn't there, you wouldn't know to turn the other direction. So when you hit those road bumps, accept those gifts. You can think, “I don't ever want to do that again. And I'm not going to, so thank you for being a miserable experience because that's the last time.”, you know, we learn as we go, we learn as we grow.
And it's just really important to learn, to trust yourself in this business because you are a creative force. You have your own magic, you have your own talent, you have your own personality. Bring what feels good into your business.
And don't be afraid to look at the shadows. Is there a pattern in your behavior that's hindering your growth? Sometimes looking at the shadows is really rough, but if you can journal about it, if you can reflect on it and you can say like, oh, you know what, I'm going out a little bit too much. And it's causing me to fall behind in my work.
So I get stressed out editing because things pile up. I think I'm going to cut back next year. Whatever the thing is, whatever the shadow is, wherever that is showing up for you use that as a teaching point. You can turn your attention in a new direction. Trust yourself.
I hope you enjoyed the solstice that just passed. We're still in the winter. We're still in the season of the hermit, if you're familiar with Tarot. It is a beautiful time of year.
Embrace going inward, embrace reflecting on your business and bring forward your intuition into your business so that you have a happier year running your business.
Happy new year. Remember, in everything you want to achieve, consistency is key.