Hi friends, welcome to another episode of From Better Half to Boss. I have something special in store for you today. I am bringing to you a live training that I did in my free Facebook group called The Beauty in Birth: A Community for Birth Photographers. And it’s not just birth photographers, so if you’re a newborn photographer or baby photographer, you’re welcome to come hang out there!
I just wrapped up this training and I wanted to bring it to you on the podcast because I think it covers something really important that a lot of photographers struggle with and that is finding their worth and understanding how money mindset actually affects your bookings and clients’ willingness to hire you.
The audio is not the best, please let me warn you. But I know it’s going to be a good use of your time.
Now, you’re going to get the best experience from this episode if you’re able to sit and listen with a piece of paper and actually do the assignments right along with us. Even if you can’t do that, I know listening is going to bless you so much.
Without further ado, let’s get into How to Improve Your Money Mindset So That You Can Go Full-Time with Photography!
Before we begin…
I am really excited to present this to you here today because shifting and improving my money mindset has helped my business so much.
My promise for this training is for you to leave with a clear picture of your money mindset and how you can improve it so that you can go full-time with photography.
Before we get started, I want to let you know if you’re participating, whether you’re here live or later, this is a safe space because we’re going to have to get a little uncomfortable. We’re going to have to get a little vulnerable in order to make changes in the areas that we want to when it comes to our money mindset.
So when it comes to money, a lot of people start to get uncomfortable.
Chances are you’re here as a photographer and you love what you do, and maybe you start to kind of feel bad for charging a lot, whatever “a lot” means, right, because that’s kind of relative. But because you love what you do, you don’t really want to charge a lot.
So I want to ask you a question right off the bat:
Do you feel bad when you make a lot of money? Why?
Do you believe that you deserve to make a lot of money?
These are some questions just to start us off with.
Beliefs about Money
The truth is, just like you have a relationship with your parents, with your kids, with your spouse, with your friends, you also have a relationship with money.
And it’s primarily rooted in our childhood and what we we’re taught about money, which is like most of our beliefs, what we grew up with, learning about money.
So let’s backtrack a little bit and look at what is a belief. Any belief at all.
A belief is something that you believe to be true, but it isn’t universally true. If it’s not true 100% of the time, it is a belief.
For example: “I don’t have time to work on my business because I have a full-time job.”
And this might feel true to you. In fact, beliefs often do feel like truth and fact.
But then I would ask you, are there people out there who have a business and a full-time job?Are there people out there who are busier than you and still have a photography business?
Remember: if it’s not 100% true, it’s a belief and we know that the truth is you make time for what is important to you. Plain and simple. Like listening to this training right now is important to you, you made the time for it. I’m sure there are other things that you could be doing, but you chose to be here. You’re made the time for it.
Let’s look at another example: “My market is too saturated for me to get into photography and actually make money.”
Do you see how this is not actually true? It’s a belief, even though it might feel really, really true to you, if it’s not a hundred percent true, a hundred percent of the time, it’s a belief.
Most of us are operating our lives and businesses as if our limiting beliefs are true, as if these things that our beliefs are true, and that is what’s keeping us from reaching our potential.
Here’s the deal, you guys, it is comfortable to stay in our box because our brain knows that it’s safe here. And these thoughts and beliefs have kept us alive so far. So anything new that we’re trying to change or make different, our brain perceives as danger because it’s different than what has kept us alive to this point.
So I want to ask you, what beliefs about money did you grow up with? Like we talked about at the beginning, chances are, whoever raised you also taught you about money whether or not they did it intentionally.
For example, my dad is also a small business owner and I learned a lot of really great things about money and building a business from him. He gave me some good beliefs about money that I chose to keep, but he also passed on some beliefs to me that haven’t served me as an adult, and it wasn’t intentional.
These people in our lives are just operating on autopilot sometimes. He gave me some beliefs about money that I chose not to keep, and that is the important part.
It’s my responsibility as an adult to identify these beliefs and say, “Is this a belief that I want to keep or not?”
So that’s what we’re going to do now. I want you to listen as I share some of these beliefs that I have held or currently struggle with, and ask yourself if you struggle with these beliefs too. I’m going to get a little vulnerable and share some former/still struggling sometimes with these limiting beliefs about money.
Limiting Beliefs about Money
If you work hard, you’ll make money.
This one actually doesn’t sound bad. I grew up with this belief. This taught me to have a good work ethic, but it also taught me to associate working hard with making money. And if I make money without working hard, I think I’ve done something wrong.
I need to go to college and get a good job or marry someone who has a good job to have benefits and security.
If you know anything about my story, you know this was a belief that it took me a long time to get rid of, but a lot of us, especially as Americans, we see this as the American dream. Go to college, get a good paying job with benefits, and that’s the goal. And it’s not a terrible thing to believe, but growing up with this belief taught me that if I veered from this path, I was doing something wrong or irresponsible.
It’s impolite to talk about money.
It’s a little uncomfy, but I have broken past this limiting belief and I will not continue with my children. I talk openly about money all the time. I love my dad to death. For some reason, he keeps coming up. But when I was growing up, I remember asking my dad how much money he made and he said, “We don’t talk about stuff like that. It’s rude to ask that,” and like shut me down. And my little eight-year-old brain or whatever it was said, “Oh, okay, shoot. That was something I shouldn’t have asked about. I’m not going to ask dad about money anymore.”
Obviously, he didn’t mean to shut that conversation down in that way, but that’s what it taught me was that it was impolite to talk about money. Those are all conversations that I openly have with my kids these days because I want them to understand that talking about money is acceptable and kind of break this stigma.
Money doesn’t grow on trees.
I heard this all the time. All the time. And this brings up scarcity, right? We better enjoy it while it lasts or be stingy about money because it’s not just out there growing on trees.
“I feel guilty for wanting to make a lot of money.”
So let’s dig into this one because I think that this is one a lot of photographers deal with and struggle with, and that is, “I feel guilty for wanting to make a lot of money.”
I feel guilty for wanting to make a lot of money. Anybody feel this way? I don’t know if you’ve noticed this. I realized this a few years ago and I started paying better attention. The bad guy in cartoons is often rich, and so I immediately think of like Scrooge McDuck who’s like up in his big high rise, rolling in gold coins. And we’re shown this image in cartoon as kids of what being rich is and often it’s negative. So it’s no wonder we grow up thinking, “Well I don’t want to be bad person. I don’t want to be mean or evil. So I can’t be rich.”
Write this Down!
These are some common limiting beliefs about money, and I want you to read through these and pick one or two of them that scream out to you. If you have one that you’re reading and you’re like, “That’s true,” I want you to write it down and I’d want you to just pick one or two that are prominent for you.
- Money doesn’t grow on trees
- You have to work hard for your money
- I feel guilty making a lot of money
- Having money is greedy or wanting to have a lot of money is greedy.
- I can’t ever save money.
- More money, more problems.
- Never go into debt.
- Rich people are lucky.
- I have champagne taste on a beer budget.
These are some common limiting beliefs about money, which of these stick out to you? You can write them down.
Why is Money Relationship Important?
But why is this money relationship important? Why does this matter? And this is bringing it back to photographers specifically because if you don’t think you’re worth your price, and you don’t think it’s a good thing to make a lot of money, you are likely unknowingly repelling money with your energy and your actions. And I want to give you a detailed example to show you what I mean.
I want you to think about it like this. Let’s look at Lisa (who’s made up) who is the low price photographer. If your name is Lisa, I’m not talking about you. Now, Lisa is really talented, but she’s struggling to find high-paying clients. Lisa has this deep rooted belief that money is selfish or like wanting money is selfish.
Therefore, she under prices her services. She doesn’t want to be perceived as greedy, so she keeps her rates low. When clients inquire to book a session with her, she feels guilty about her prices and often offers discounts without being asked. Anybody relate to this? Like they didn’t even ask for a discount and I’m just like, “Here’s 20% off.”
She’s anxious about money conversations and she also shies away from investing in her business because she’s afraid to waste money. And even though she’s really talented, her money mindset is what’s holding her back. She unknowingly is repelling these high paying clients who can sense her lack of confidence in her worth, and as a result, those high paying clients start to question the quality of her work because she doesn’t seem to value it appropriately herself.
That is a big one, you guys. I’m going to say that again.
She’s unknowingly repelling high paying clients because they can sense her lack of confidence in her worth. They start to question the quality of her work as a result.
I could go into a whole tangent about how raising your prices can actually be a marketing strategy, but I’m not going down that road. I will say, when I raised my prices, almost doubled them, I became equally as booked, if not more booked, because your price is almost kind of marketing for you. It’s positioning your brand, your price does.
So all of these things about poor Lisa is because she believes that if she wants to make a lot of money or charge a lot of money, it’s bad and it makes them a bad person and she doesn’t want to be a bad person.
And this insinuates that people who have a lot of money are bad, or money itself is bad, and the truth about money is that money is without morals. Money is not good or bad itself. I have a pen. It’s not a very sharp pen, but I have a pen right here and I can take this pen and I can write a note to a friend, an encouraging letter that I can write and send in the mail, or I can take this pen and like jab it into somebody’s leg. That was very violent.
Are either of those two things because I had a pen? No, it has nothing to do with the pen. The pen is not good or bad, and it’s the same with money. It’s not good or bad. It’s the person using it that makes it good or bad. So then why do we feel bad if someone wants to pay us a lot of money?
If somebody values what you do and they want to pay you, who are you to stop them? So I want to give you kind of like this mic drop thing that I say to myself often and I tell my students often, and that is…
It is none of your business how your clients spend their money.
I don’t know if anybody else does this, and I’m kind of calling myself out on this a little bit, but if you ever think about your client and they’re like, “Oh, they can’t afford me. They can’t afford my prices…” It’s none of your business how your clients choose to spend their money, and if they want to pay you a premium, why would you stop them from that? Why would you rob them from that? It’s none of your business, how your clients spend their money.
And let’s go back to money doesn’t go grow on trees because this is one I know comes up for a lot of people and it’s actually not true. Money is actually a renewable resource, right? You spend it, then you make more, then you spend it, then you make more.
But the one resource that’s not renewable we all seem to be okay with getting rid of is time. So we spend our time to save money.
We spend the thing we can’t get more of to save the thing that we can get more of. We’re wasting the resource that we’re never going to get more of on one that we can always get more of.
So grab a piece of paper or something to take notes with or open your phone’s notes app.
I want you to think of a time where you didn’t work hard and money just appeared.
- Something small like you found a $20 bill, a $10 bill, or $1 bill in your jeans.
- A random check sent to your mailbox
- Got a refund for something
- You found a gift card that you weren’t expecting
- You found money in the parking lot
- Do you have birth payments coming in this month from someone on a payment plan
- Have you used reward points to purchase something (like my Starbucks this morning, I bought with rewards, which is so fun!)
- Have you been given a gift?
- Did somebody buy your lunch or dinner?
I want you to get your head in this space and think within the last 30, 60, 90 days, and I want you to challenge yourself to think of 10 different ways that money has come to you where you didn’t work hard.
Here are some of the things that I wrote:
-My husband does like day trading stocks and he had somebody sign up under him and he got 12 free stocks and I won’t say what some of the stocks were, but they were insane that we got them for free. So that was just totally free money that was given to us.
-Starbucks this morning, bought it with reward points. Best feeling ever when it’s just completely free.
– I opened up Venmo to send somebody money and I had 20 bucks in there that I didn’t remember was in there. So that was free money and abundance.
-There was a quarter on my nightstand this morning. Pretty sure it belonged to a kid, but it’s in my room. It’s mine now.
– I have a PayPal business debit card and I get 1% back, and I recently got the email that’s like, “You got this much money back for free.”
We’re doing this because I want you to see that no matter what the economy looks like, that no matter what people are screaming on the news, no matter what people are saying in Facebook groups about how people aren’t spending money on photography right now and how their bookings are down, this exercise is to show you that money is actually abundant and there is opportunity everywhere when you look for it.
And a lot of this stuff, and maybe this is true for you, you kind of are like, “Oh, cool,” and you push past it, but can we pause for a minute in gratitude and notice these things and acknowledge them as abundance and acknowledge them as things that are good coming into our life. Was this helpful? Hopefully, this was helpful for you guys to just pause and see these small things that feel small that are actually big, and it’s just proof that money is abundant and money is out there.
If you’re a student in marketing school, you know that everything that we build is set on step one, which is your foundation. And your money mindset is a part of your foundation. And if I throw marketing strategies at you and that foundation is not solid, it’s not going to matter, right?
If the foundation’s crumbling, what’s on top of it doesn’t matter anymore, it’s crumbling too. It’s falling. And so money mindset is a really important piece of that foundation, and that’s why we’re talking about this.
My takeaway for you would be to think of one of the limiting beliefs that we talked about here today, and really challenge yourself to look at why do I believe this is true?
Is this actually true? And if not, what is the truth? Combat it with actual truth. I hope that this is valuable for you. Thank you so much!