Productivity

Ep 97. Don’t Let Having Kids Hold Back Your Photography Business Growth

holding you back
I'm Ashley!

My mission at The Purpose Gathering is to help driven momtogs like you level up, so you can build a sustainable business AND a fulfilling family life. I do that through authentic brand photography for mompreneurs and my signature program for mom photographers: Side Hustler to CEO.

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Something I hear from a lot of moms is this myth about their kids holding them back in business.

We’re going to bust that myth here today.

In Episode 97, we went into detail about the five mindsets that might be holding you back and sabotaging your photography business. Let’s briefly walk through those five mindsets that you might be experiencing.

  • The Imposter Mindset: Not feeling good enough.
  • The Fixed Mindset: You’re always assuming, “This is just who I am”, and not really wanting to change.
  • The Hustle Mindset: Always feeling like you have so much to do, a hustle mentality so to speak.
  • The Scarcity Mindset: Just never feeling like you have enough.
  • The Pride Mindset: Always saying, “I can do everything myself, I don’t need help.”

Let’s talk about this other hidden mindset that you haven’t even thought about before. Here’s a little backstory about me. I just want to be honest with you, I never wanted to be a full time stay at home mom. That was never my goal and what I had envisioned for my life. It just sort of came to be when I had my daughter, I knew that I wanted to go more full time with my photography business and I wanted to quit my very cushy nanny job. I took this leap and wanted to own my own business.

I knew that I didn’t want to be a stay at home mom all the time, I wanted something more.

But I also had this pull, like I want to raise my kids and I want to be that constant in my child’s life. What I soon found out after trying to grow my business with my daughter, when she was one, was that I just felt so torn all the time. I felt like if I was spending time with my family, and being an awesome mom, I was being a horrible business owner. I wasn’t getting my business done. On the flip side when I was killing it in business, I felt like I was neglecting my kids. I just felt like neither part of my life was ever getting the best of me. Soon, I began to just adopt this mentality that the reason my business wasn’t growing was just because I had kids holding me back. I just blamed them for being in this stagnant season in my business.

Recently, I asked mom photographers in a couple of Facebook groups, what their biggest struggles were as a mom and as a photographer. Some of them said:

“I’m not able to do what I want to do, because I have kids.”

“Finding time to work on my business is impossible because of my kids.”

“My kids are so needy, there’s just never enough time to get it all done.”

“I hardly get any free time to edit without my kids always being around in needing me.”

I totally resonate with all of those things you are feeling.. We’ve all been there, and I want you to give yourself some grace. I don’t want you to be overwhelmed with guilt. This mindset shift that we need to make surrounding our kiddos is a big one and it’s one that doesn’t just go away. It’s definitely one that I feel like we all need support with. Just know that you’re not alone mama. So if you are ready to learn about four helpful strategies that will help shift your mindset, let’s get right to it.

Strategy #1: Include Your Kids in What You’re Doing

I think this is so important. It’s so valuable as an entrepreneur to be able to teach your children what it is that you do when you’re working. It’s going to take a little bit more time and a bit more hand holding if you have younger kids. Episode 10, The Four Things Your Kids Need the Most, is an incredible episode for you if you are struggling with trying to work while your kids are at home. It really shows you how to take care of your kiddos first, so that they allow you to get your work done.

If we begin to include our kids in the narration of what we’re doing, they will be more involved and more supportive. They will be more understanding when we tell them that it’s time for mommy to work. Just giving your kids a peek into what you’re doing makes it feel less off limits, if that makes sense. If we’re always shooing our kids away, it just makes them want to come into our office or into our space more often. So if we include them in what’s going on, they’ll be more willing to just kind of let us be.

Strategy #2: Believe that Your Kids are Capable of More

Teaching your kids about independence I think is really key to creating some separation. Especially when they’re young, creating a space that’s safe for your kiddo, but also a space where you can work near them. I was chatting with a mom the other day who mentioned that she loved doing lifestyle photography, especially while hiking in national parks. She said that it was really hard though having her kids because she felt her kiddos maybe couldn’t do the hike, or they would get bored. They were kind of cramping her style and she wanted to be out there, doing these trips and   travelling.

In chatting with her for a little while, I found out that her kids were 10 and 14 and I said to her that those were great ages for her to start training them, so that maybe they are more interested in coming with her on these adventures. I asked her this:

What if you gave them the opportunity to train with you?

What if you kind of viewed it from a different perspective? I also thought her kids were at a great age where they could take photos themselves and she could use that as an opportunity to teach them a skill while she’s also doing what she loves. Believe that your kids are capable and I promise you, this mentality that they’re holding you back, it will start to become easier to manage.

Strategy #3: Make Time to Play with Your Kids

This one is hard. It is really, really hard, especially if it’s been a while since you’ve played. Start to step out of the parent mindset and into the kid mindset more often. Make things fun and not so serious all the time. Parents do have to be tough, we do have to say no once in a while. We do have to set limits and boundaries, but..

..when you can be a kid, be a kid.

I promise when you play more, your kids are going to be so much more compliant. They’re going to be so much more energized to be around you and to get along with their siblings because they feel like everything is more fun and it’s not always super serious and boring. Honestly, from a kid’s perspective, sometimes the different things that we always demand of them, it’s boring.. It really is not their priorities, it’s our priorities. So release a little bit of that control and make more time for that kid mindset.

Strategy #4: Focus on the Right Things in your Business

Finally, the last thing is learning to focus on the right things in your business. You can maximize the minimal amount of time that you have with your kids home. Even if you have kids in school, and you still might be feeling like you’re not further along. It isn’t that your kids are holding you back, it could be that you’re just not focusing on the right things in your business. Now, everybody’s business is a little bit different, but start tracking your time. So grab a timer and start to track how long a certain task is taking you. The key is to figure out how you can maximize your time and really get specific on the time that you’re spending.

For instance, I currently have my timer set for 45 minutes of work, and then a 15 minute rest break. You could use that rest break as little bursts of hanging out with your kids. Reading them a book real quick or pushing them on the backyard swing for 15 minutes or so. When you have younger kids, I recommend doing shorter bursts with play time in between your work blocks.

So if you haven’t already signed up for the challenge called Passion to Profit that I have coming up, go ahead and make sure you do that at thepurposegathering.com/challenge. I’m going to go into more detail about this 80-20 rule, and how to get the maximum benefit on that 20% of your efforts. That’s where I want you spending the majority of your time so that you can build the business of your dreams. We all started our business for similar reasons:

We wanted to be home with our kiddos, and we wanted time and financial freedom.

But what often happens, owning our own business makes us resentful.. Overwhelmed.. And frustrated..

And that’s not why we started our business in the first place.

I’m here to help course correct, and help guide you on the right path. To let you know that our kiddos are capable of so much more. If we just would include them in the process, make time to play with them, and really focus on the right things in our business, then our kids have no room to hold us back. Our kids are our fuel, they’re the reason why we started our business. Look at your children as a gift and capable of doing more. Bring them along with you and I promise things will look better for you. Remember, if we start to feed ourselves those negative beliefs about working when our kids are around, or about them holding us back, we’re going to believe them. The body achieves what the mind believes.

Anytime those negative thoughts come into our mind we must block them and say no.. I’m not going to believe that anymore.

I am in control of the future of my business and my kids are not the reason why it’s not growing. It’s a me problem and how I’m handling the situations with my kids.

ACTION STEPS

So I hope this gives you encouragement. I hope this gives you inspiration and some strategies and some mindset perspectives to work on. I can’t wait to hear how this mindset shift really starts to change things for you. Remember..

  • Recognize the fixed mom guilt mindset and acknowledge it’s there
  • Find a way to include your kids in your work today, even if it’s something small like showing them your photos
  • Think of ways to challenge your kids beyond what you usually tend to think they’re capable of
  • Take time out of your day to BE A KID!
  • Be more specific with what you are doing during your work time

If you’re struggling right now, I would love for you to reach out to us in the Facebook group. Use our community to lean on and know that there are people around you who get what you’re going through.

As always Mama, I am here rooting for you and you are not alone on this journey.

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My mission is to help fellow momtogs (mama photographers!) experience success in business and in motherhood. As an Arizona brand photographer for mompreneurs, I’m passionate about capturing authentic images that show off my clients’ unique personalities so they can connect with their ideal clients. And as an online business coach for momtogs, I LIVE for helping mamas experience incredible transformations that help them build a business they love, without sacrificing their precious time with their littles.

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