I talk to my students all the time about the power and growth that comes from getting outside your comfort zone. Well, this episode today is most definitely out of my comfort zone, so I’m jumping out with y’all, doing what I always say – growth happens outside of your comfort zone! And the real reason that I want to share a lot of this with you is because I want to be real, but also face a lot of judgement with this podcast. But ultimately I know my intentions here are to be honest and connect and not just show the highlight reel of my life.
If you don’t know what I’m talking about, I love Pastor Steven Furtick. I think he’s the one who coined this phrase many years ago of social media being the highlight reel. And we don’t really get to see what’s behind the scenes.
I never want to just appear a certain perfect, polished way – I want to be real and I hope that you in turn also be real.
I did this same type of episode back in October 2018 before the podcast and before YouTube when I was putting out content only on FB live. So I watched it back recently and it was actually really interesting because a lot of the same things I was fearful about back then are the things I’m still fearful about today or at least are still on my mind today.
Sharing a few of the things on that episode actually gave me power, I will say. Back then I shared that I wasn’t doing my own editing anymore and I remember being so scared of judgement when I shared that. Like who is she to teach editing when she’s not even editing herself anymore? But the truth is, when you’ve mastered a skill – it stays with you. And there comes a point in business where you really truly can’t do all the things anymore. You’re only one person. And since I shared that, a lot of you told me you decided to start outsourcing YOUR editing.
8 Things I’m Afraid to Tell You
1) As of June 1st, my husband quit his 9-5
I remembered back then being so scared to tell not only you guys, but also people in our life because I’m afraid we would fail. I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to do it, I wouldn’t be able to provide for us, and we would then have to go back and tell everybody that we tried, but we failed. And so I waited months to actually say anything to you guys, my audience, my friends, my family before I actually said he quit his job.
And this is on the list because I still worry about that.
When you’re doing something outside of your comfort zone, something that feels scary, that feeling doesn’t necessarily go away. You just start to get used to living with it. And that’s the first thing that I’m afraid to tell you is that I’m still afraid that we’ll fail. I’m still afraid that we won’t make it. And it’s something that I just have to deal with – it’s a part of our life, a part of entrepreneurship, and I think what’s interesting is that a lot of us are facing stuff like this with COVID, just the uncertainty of the world. And if you own a business that provides for you and your family, you are just used to living with that uncertainty.
2) At this moment, I’m at the heaviest I’ve ever been
I have been working on my relationship with food. And I am working on instead of going from restrictive diet to restrictive diet, taking a step back and looking at why do I choose the foods that I choose and that what is it in my life that’s causing me to choose that.
I really don’t have a hard time working out, I actually enjoy moving, so that’s never been a huge issue. I’m not perfect at it, but it’s always food. And I don’t know if any of you are my age, but literally since I was 14 years old, I’ve been dieting. I jumped from diet to diet to diet, and I’m sure a lot of you have done the same. And so, I read this book, The F*ck It Diet, and it has some really interesting concepts that about a year and a half ago I decided to just stop caring about what I was eating, focus on only eating when I was hungry, and healing my relationship with food.
So, as a result, I gained about 15 lbs. and have just stayed at that weight while I’m working on this. I don’t have a conclusion – I’m not at a place where I’ve figured anything out, that’s just sort of the journey that I’m on, but it is an intentional one. And it is with the intention that I don’t want to go back to diet culture where I constantly feel that I have to diet. I want to be healthy, I want to feel good, and I don’t really care what size I am.
One takeaway from this section is I still take photos of myself, I still take photos of my kids, I still take photos with my husband, you guys will still see me on video (and you do!) – it’s not stopping me from living my life. And so I hope if you’re in a similar place, if you’re feeling like maybe you can relate to some of the things that I’m saying, that you’ll continue to take photos of yourself, with your family, because you don’t get that back.
3) I often fail at my goals
This is hard for me to talk about because I am an achiever. I’m an Enneagram 3, I like to achieve things and I like to hit goals. And this year in particular, I don’t think I’ve hit a single goal that I have set out for myself. And I don’t want to share that with you because it sucks! It’s just not the place that I want to be. I want to be here and tell you that I’ve crushed all my goals, but I actually failed most of them.
We talk a lot about failure inside my courses and talk about how it’s good to fail and how that means you’re trying new things, and I do believe that. But I also want to hit my goals sometimes. And so it’s finding that mixture of pushing yourself to where you do fail, but not making your goals so massive and unachievable that you’re failing every single time.
4) I use AI to help me make content
The ideas and stories come from me, but I use a program called Conversion.ai and it’s so incredible because I can type in some information and hit some buttons, and it can fill in the rest. And you can tweak it and make it sound like me, but basically, it’s like when I was hiring a copywriter to help me with my content and my photography blog content, and I would go in and change it to make it sound like me.
I think in the future, honestly, this will be more and more common. But right now, it kinda feels like I’m cheating, but I am using the resources that are available to me and I am putting my spin on them. So if you need help creating content for your blog, check that out. I think I have an affiliate link. If you want it, let me know and I’ll get it for you.
It’s really incredible, like when you have writer’s block and you’re trying to think of something and you just need like the next sentence to keep you going, it’s really helpful for that.
5) I stopped taking births
As of 2022, I am no longer taking births and I am taking a break from birth photography. I was hesitant to share this.
I realized that my photography business was taking me away from what I truly love, and that is working with you guys. The days that I get to have coaching calls, record podcasts, the days where I get to interact with all of you in the Facebook group, create content on Instagram for you guys – those are my favorite things to do.
I love it so much – when you guys have wins, book 5 births with your model call, when you have a fully-booked calendar, when you’re hitting $10k months – that lights me up like nothing else.
And so I realized, having a very successful photography studio keeps me very busy and it only allows me to give a little bit to you guys. I realized that in order to serve my students in the best capacity possible, I would need to take a step back from birth photography. And it’s not necessarily forever, but it is for a season.
It’s been a really, really challenging decision – I’ve had to say no to clients that I love, a client that I had a 4-peat with – and really it’s with the intention of serving my students in a better capacity and being able to show up in a more present way for my family by removing something that takes up a lot of time and is also a significant revenue stream.
That’s just being real, but sometimes we have to make hard choices in our business where we look at our priorities and realize that everything can’t stay, something has to go.
6) Growing too slow
My point of why I am sharing with you these things is to help you feel like you’re not alone. To help you see that stuff is going on behind the scenes with people that you don’t see and don’t realize, and that not everything is a highlight reel.
A lot of times when I look at my business, I know we just released an episode about competition, I’ll sometimes look at my competition, compare myself, and think that they are growing so much faster than me…what am I doing wrong?
It’s different in my education business and my photography business. I struggled with these things in my photography business in the beginning and even for the first several years, then I got to a point in my business where I was bringing in the clients and I wasn’t worried about it.
But what happens every time I create something new in my business is I feel like I just want it to instantly be successful, I don’t know if anybody could relate to that. I’m just like, “I’m doing it the right way, it should instantly be at this income level,” or whatever metric I set for myself. And I’ve had to pause and look at myself and my business, and really think about – long term, what do I like my life and my business to look like, try not to rush it, and be okay with the fact that somebody else might come in and knock their business out of the water in 6 months, and mine might take 6 years, and that’s okay! Because I know that where I’m going is worth it.
7) Don’t know if I should talk about my beliefs
It can be challenging to share what you believe and know that it’s going to repel people. We talk about attract and repel all the time, and there just comes a line where you have to start to think like, “Okay, am I putting too much out there?” Where’s that line with attract and repel? I don’t really have the answer.
Because I struggle sometimes with how much I believe as Tavia the person and if it’s gonna be beneficial for you guys. And I think the same is true for you and your audience. Is it going to be beneficial for you to share this or not? Is it going to really attract your ideal person or is it just gonna take everybody off?
Attract and repel, I wholeheartedly believe, but in a part of me – I don’t want anyone to ever feel unwelcome. However, my beliefs are a big part of who I am. And I know that yours are probably are too. So it’s just finding this line – this invisible, imaginary line of not wanting people to feel unwelcome, but also having a hard time not just sharing what you believe all the time because it’s such a huge part who you are.
I want to continue this conversation about what and what not to share – should you talk about your beliefs, should you talk about God, should you talk about vaccinations (though you’re never gonna hear me talk about vaccinations on this show, just FYI) – just thinking about what’s too much and not too much to share.
Chances are you’re wondering about this too. So I’d love to continue this conversation and talk about it, but that’s something I didn’t really want to share because it is awkward and I thought that I should’ve figured this out by now. But I haven’t, I’m just kinda figuring it out as I go.
So that was a little bit uncomfortable for me, but I hope that hearing those things helped you maybe see yourself in a little bit of them and maybe not feel quite so alone with whatever it is that you’re going through.
Thank you for being here. And as always, if you have a passion, it is not an accident. Because not everyone loves the thing that you love. So whatever your passion is, I hope that you get out there and make it happen. Thank you so much for listening to this episode, have a great week!