Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Stepping Out

Looking Back
Remember the days of being picked last for the team in gym class or at recess?
Being made fun of because of what you wore?
For bringing stuffed animals for show and tell?
The list could go on and on.
Being shy and having a low self esteem made it hard to be friends with just anyone and also harder to step out and try new things.
Stepping Up
A year after high school, I was confronted by the local pageant ladies and asked if I wanted to run. This had always been a dream of mine but I was way to insecure. I couldn't write a speech well, I wasn't coordinated enough to do the dance routine, I had to come up with a talent, and mentor an elementary age girl between my nearly full time job.
I gave it some thought. Figured it really couldn't hurt. So between working a lot of hours, I did get my visitations at the old folks home in, mentored the gal, wrote the speech (with a lot of help from a friend), learned the dance routine, and went through with the event!
Everything seemed to be going good until Friday night. Saturday we were supposed to meet at the stage for crash course on how to walk and procedure for crowning event. Well, turns out, I had booked my hair appointment for that time...coordinators said it would be alright if I was late.
So, Saturday I head to hair appointment, and I get my confidence slammed down for the day by the hair dresser telling me I should not have come in with wet hair, we'd never get my hair done and we wouldn't have enough time. That's not what I wanted to hear! I ended up catching the last five minutes of instructions at the stage and headed for my parade ride.
The rest of the day went better with the judges interview, impromptu questions, group photo shoot, and crowning. The evening ended with a fun dance with family and friends.

Rewarding Results
I took the challenge, I maybe didn't win, but I learned a few things.

1. Be you!  In business, I shoot what I like, not what other photographers are shooting and selling. I edit the way I like to edit, not other photographers editing styles. I'm me!

2. It will work! You may think it won't work, but it will! Life is busy with four little ones, but between God, family, friends, and hubby's business, there's still time for my photography!

3. Don't be shy! Take a chance. If you're not going to pipe up, you're going to miss the opportunity. Your competitor won't suggest you when they can have the job! You may only get the chance once in your life time. If you don't take it, you'll always wonder what if.

Taking the Challenge
Being challenged by Rachel Brenke to go out and do something out of my comfort zone this year for my business, I attempted a few things.
I went ahead and changed my pricing on my product photography simply because you will never make money off of $2 per photo. Due to the increase in prices, I have also seen less products to shoot. When I debate the price increase, I ask myself, "Is my time worth the $2 a photo?" No it's not. I have a family and home that needs to be cared for too.
I also stepped out and listed a bunch of new sizes as well as canvases for photography in my etsy shop. I felt I was holding back in not giving customers the options of sizes they may want.
Not only did I add larger sizes, I increased the number of items in my shop. Seeing it is not free to list on etsy, I took this step in hopes of being found sooner in searches and when people were browsing. I'm hoping that the result will bring more customers as well as new customers.

The biggest thing I did which was a lot of work and a challenge was hosting an in home party at my house.
I invited friends, family and neighbours and showed my photography, jewelry from Trinkets 'N Whatnots, and food seasonings from Dell Cove Spice Co.  Those that attended had a chance to order from all three businesses. People who I wouldn't have expected to purchase my photography took this opportunity to do so. Hosting this party and being the representative for the businesses including mine made put into practice the speech writing, be prepared for the "impromptu questions", and get out of that shell I'm comfortable in. (I'm also hoping to host another party in the near future because of the great turn out).

Thank you Rachel Brenke for the opportunity to possibly win one to one mentoring.


Linda B said...

Crystal, I'm so proud of you. First, being yourself and then for hosting the party.

It's nice that you shared with other PFT members too.

Lori Bergmann said...

What an inspiring article, Crystal! And I love your work too! *Ü*

ariella42 said...

What a wonderful post! Sometimes stepping outside of our comfort zone is the hardest thing to do, but you seem to do it with aplomb.

CreekHiker / HollysFolly said...

Great inspiration Crystal!!!

CalliopeCreations said...

What a wonderful article. I'm so glad you took the time to post today. It's hard to step out of our comfort zones and take that chance. You did and look how well it turned out. Good for You, Girl!!

Gabby Schleich said...

Good article, I also love your photography :)

Unknown said...

What an inspiring post. Thank you for sharing your experience with us. Much success!!

KatersAcres said...

WOW! Your post today took me on a mini journey of your life...I loved it. I love that you have pushed and challenged yourself. We all need to push ourselves. I love your home party too! I may be picking your brain for ideas so that I can host a party myself.

Unknown said...

I am extremely proud of you Crystal. You do amazing work, and by staying true to yourself you will have amazing results!

And Thank you for Representing Trinkets N Whatnots!

Unknown said...

Very inspiring Crystal! Being true to yourself is SO important. Thanks for the reminder!

Unknown said...

Congratulations on your success! Keep up the good work!