The year is rapidly coming to a close and at times I feel like I'm trapped in an old Jimmy Stewart movie and the hands of the clock are spinning. Time is that one element we NEVER have enough of and being away from the business last week had a profound impact on me.
Instead of feeling frustrated over time lost and trying to catch up, I'm finding renewed energy and even a sense of accomplishment at simply not doing a lot for a few days. I needed and will continue to grieve the loss of my best buddy, my Dad, but each day it gets a little easier. Thinking about the fun times far outweighs the pain of his passing.
I'm thinking about things I still want to do to wrap up 2015 and we've got roughly six weeks left. I know what I'm working on, but how about you? What can you do to give the year a stronger finish? Remember, it's not just about your sales, but paving the way for new relationships in 2016. Here are some things to think about.
You've still got time for a holiday card! There is no easier way to remind people what you do for a living. Do NOT use store-bought cards. Use your images and take advantage of simply wishing people "Happy Holidays" to create top of mind awareness with your clients that you're an artist.
Holiday sales abound - so think about what you need for gear and software. Black Friday is coming up, and every retailer is going to be after your wallet. Take the time now to think about what you need, so you're ready to shop rather than just impulse buy.
Got your reservations? January kicks off the industry's trade show and convention season. Now is the time to make sure you've got flights, hotels and even a few dinner reservations for those conventions you want to attend.
Delegate! Most of us have a challenge with asking for help. Learn to delegate and through the holidays especially, if you need a little help then ask for it.
Take time for YOU! December is one of the busiest months of the year for most photographers, but don't attack it as a storm trooper. Take the time to make time for yourself. You won't be any good to your clients, let alone your family if you're burned out. Recognize the importance of taking time just for you. Plan a few "date nights" with your spouse for example. Take the time, unwind and appreciate how much you can get done if you keep your battery charged.
This isn't meant to be an all encompassing post this morning. It's just too big a topic. There's a new year right around the corner and now is the perfect time to think about bringing this year to a strong close and at the same time prepare the path for 2016.
It might seem a little sappy, but I found the following quote.
The year is finally coming to an end.I will not cry over the bad days.
I will not despair over failures.I will not forget the lessons I learnt.
I will not let any incident from the past devastate me or make me less courageous...
and will never stop believing in love.
Whether you admit it or not, all of you believe in love, because whether it's the love you have for somebody else, your family, the craft or capturing the love between your subjects, it's at the heart of everything you do.
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.