May 9, 2016
I once read this quote by Joel Osteen that made me realize God doesn’t want me to hoard my talent. He wants me to reach back and help others get to a place of success and happiness that I’ve found. He gave me this talent with my hands and my mind, my eyes and my heart. But He didn’t just give it to me for me to be selfish with — He wants me to help others, I feel it in my bones.
“Being successful doesn’t necessarily make you great.What makes you great is when you reach back and help somebody else become great.” -Joel Osteen
Chances are, you’ve seen that quote on my website under the For Photographers tab. It’s been there ever since I decided to start mentoring 2 years ago. Throughout the last 2 years, I’ve mentored around 25 girls and answered countless emails from beginners needing a little help/advice and have heard tons of stories of their why. Everyones why is different from the next.
No matter what your why is, I believe the most important part, is finding your Christmas Morning.
Everyone knows Christmas Morning is the best feeling. You wait so long for it every year, to come down and see all the presents left for you…its a feeling unlike anything else. And then when you become a parent, it some how gets even better. Watching that sparkle, that excitement, that passion in your children’s eyes for all of these presents left just for them…makes my heart swell.
My husband will be the first to tell you, that when I walk in the door from a session or a wedding, I kiss him, Aubree, make sure they’ve eaten and are happy campers, and then I walk very quickly into my office to import the images I just took.
Photography is my Christmas Morning.
There is just nothing better than culling through the happy images I just had the privilege to take. It’s an HONOR you guys… when someone chooses you. When someone picks YOU out of the sea of photographers in our very saturated market. It’s an honor I don’t take lightly. God wants me to serve my clients well and I do everything in my power to do just that. I hope all of my clients walk away from a session or wedding with me knowing just how much my family and I appreciate them and how much I adore their story.
I run into my office to import images, to look at them, to feel the connection, to edit my heart away and to share a sneak peek with my clients that same day. Their excitement for that sneak peek excites ME! I have never once come home from a wedding or a session and not imported my images to at least look at them and make sure they’re safe and backed up.
I’ve mentored around 25 girls. And when I have the chance to follow up with them on certain sessions I know they’ve done and their answer several days later is “oh, I haven’t even had a chance to look at those yet”… I know this isn’t their Christmas Morning. This isn’t the passion that ignites their fire, makes their heart feel complete and full, or what they’re truly set out to do.
This isn’t a bad thing… this isn’t meant to be negative or upsetting. It’s the truth.
Life is too short to not find your Christmas Morning.
Not just with photography, but with anything. If you haven’t found that one thing in life that you want so bad, you’d do just about anything for… something that makes your heart burst with joy and race with excitement… something that makes you feel like you were put on this earth for this and you know God wants you to act on it… something you were called to do, something that gives you the true definition of passion…
…then keep looking.
Remember, you may not be great at whatever it is from the start. It may take time to get good. I’m pretty sure Jose Villa didn’t start out taking the amazing photo’s he takes now on day one, LOL! Heck, had I of listened to my first ‘mentor’ ever when she told me I had no business being in this industry and should just sell all of my gear that moment and never do photography again, I wouldn’t be here right now. I wouldn’t have this happiness or success or this feeling. But I knew deep down, this is my Christmas Morning and the passion that literally ignites the fire in my heart and makes my dreams come true. I knew I would have to work for it.
I have found my Christmas Morning, my calling, my thing. I truly hope that everyone can find theirs, too.
Find your Christmas Morning, and never let go. Find that one thing that brings pure happiness to your soul and I promise, you’ll never work another day in your life. Maybe today is meant for some of you to do a little soul searching, a little praying, a little asking for guidance. I’m hoping and praying that if you haven’t found your Christmas Morning yet, you find it soon. God has a calling for you, too.
Find your Christmas Morning, friends. And never let go.
Design by West + Free Co. Photography by Jami Thompson Photography