Struggling to Meet Your Goals | Wedding Photographer

One of Ryan and I’s favorite restaurants has a 60 cent wing special on Thursdays. With work filling our weekends, Thursday's “wing night” has become a thing for us. I love our unplanned, low-key dates because they always allow us to reconnect in a way that is much deeper than the routine “how was your day?”. Recently, as we sat across from each other, fingers covered in our favorite sweet and spicy sauce, I confessed something that had been weighing on my mind for weeks.

“Ryan, I feel stuck. I feel like I’ve reached this point in my business where something needs to change, but I haven’t the slightest idea of what that change is. There is a certain aspect that needs more attention to grow. Yet, I have no idea where to put most of my attention. I have goals for the year that I don’t think I am going to reach, and it hurts. It feels heavy on my shoulders, and aches the pit of my stomach. Almost like I feel guilty for being at this stand still."

He listened to me talk in circles about how I’m failing, how I’m growing, how I’m unsure, and how I’m positive that I’m on the right track. Until, he stopped me and simply said “Chelsea, what you are doing just takes time”. He’s right. (He usually is) It is easy for me to sit at my computer and think about everything that I need to do, and all of the goals that I haven’t quite reached. But, I RARELY take the time to step back and look at everything that I DID, and all of the goals that I crushed. Twenty year old Chelsea would look at present Chelsea, and say “Get it girl! Think of where we will we be in another five years?!” So, I dug up photos from my very first photo session and put them next to a recent wedding. Ironically, Ryan was my first session as a high school senior. 

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Now, I could list 542 things that I would have done differently knowing what I know now. But, I want to point out the fact that when I photographed Ryan’s senior photos, I never thought I would be a wedding photographer, like ever. Weddings, brides, white dresses…all terrifying. But, with TIME, weddings have become my specialty and the very thing in my business that fills me up the most. Suddenly I didn’t feel so stuck. Crazy, right? I realized that comparing my then and now is much more motivating and ACCURATE than comparing myself to other people's individual success.

Ryan and I have always looked to the future. We have this strong desire to constantly achieve. And, I hope you don't take that in a “look at how great we are” kind of way. I’m saying it because we never feel like we are quite there. We just keep working past that goal, and on to the next one, and never take the time to enjoy where we are. So, we left our empty plate of wings reminding each other to enjoy where we are, and to find pride in how far we have come.

I'm taking this struggle public because I know that this isn’t just me. You have big goals that you are struggling with too. With your life, with your career, with your health, with your wedding, with your home. I am sharing my struggle in hopes that this blog post can be your “wing night”. I am here to tell you that it is okay to constantly be striving for something greater, and it is also okay to take the time to enjoy where you are. Look back at where you started, reward yourself for how far you’ve come, and let that be the motivation you need to put your head back down and keep working toward your biggest goals.