"Hey loves! I'm Brooke Michelle and welcome to the blog. I am a high school senior, wedding and boudoir photographer! My passions include educating other photographers, traveling as often as I can and laughing more than I should. This blog is where I get to show all of that off to you and bring you in a little deeper into my life, so stay awhile!"
The Yoga Series
I Almost Let Being a Business Owner Steal My TwentiesEducation for Entrepreneurs
Being a business owner at a young age is tough. But it was even worse when I was just beginning at the very young age of 17. It was hard being so much younger than all my wedding clients, or being the same age as my senior clients. I worked hard to gain respect from others and prove that I was more than just another teen with a camera and a silly dream. I wanted to prove I was willing to put in the work to make this a reality. I was in this for the long run!
I saw all these young women (24, 22, some not even 20 yet) dominating the industry! They were so young, full of talent and already producing six figure businesses. I thought in order to keep up and create a similar level of success that I had to not sleep, hustle, hustle some more, and then repeat. but what I failed to see was that I wasn’t seeing the full picture. All I saw were the insta stories or BTS Instagrams being shared. I saw them turn out blog post after blog post! But what I didn’t see was them taking time to be with family. I didn’t see them working long hours so that they could have weekends off (unless they had a wedding, duh). What I was seeing was a false reality of what had to be done to create this success!
I’ve mentioned it before and I’ll mention it again, I have amazing friends. It wasn’t until recently when anchor came out that I listened to one of my best friends, Madison Short, micro podcast about hustling. She went on to explain that just because you aren’t documenting your hustle on social media doesn’t mean you aren’t doing it behind the scenes. She explained how she lost friends due to them becoming overwhelmed with the work and having to always take that next step. They were pushing aside real life relationships to further their career.
I took a step back because seriously this was one of those “I feel personally victimized” moments. Not because of anything Maddie did or said, but because this was me and I didn’t even realize it. She may not have been talking about me directly, but everything she was saying was easily applied. I was working ridiculously long hours and skipping social dates with friends to work even more. I was only hoping on to Instagram to share about, you guessed it, more work. I was burning myself out and I wasn’t even realizing it!
I literally can never explain what that micro podcast (or just generally having Maddie as a friend) meant. It’s so easy to get caught up in work and let it take over your life.
Just because we aren’t showing our hustle doesn’t mean we aren’t working. And just because we took a night off to live off our youth doesn’t mean we aren’t thriving.
Time flies, that’s a given! But how we spend our days is or choice. I didn’t begin this career to work hours and hours and let me relationships fall away. I chose this career and working as my own boss so I could determine my hours, so I could one day build a family on my own terms and to live a life of fulfillment.
I’m thankful for friends who woke me up from this dream. I am living the dream, but that doesn’t mean that has to be all I’m doing. I had to find who I was again and once I did it actually HELPED my business! Just by being me I was relating to clients. I could connect with seniors or have conversations outside of business with brides! Some days I still have to train myself to be a 20 something year old, but a life worth living is filled both an amazing career and amazing relationships. It’s living a life worth loving alongside a career worth working.