I remember when I was pretty new to my photography business, I would get SO nervous before my shoots. That nervousness would manifest itself later as imposter syndrome – even during a shoot. Not cool.
On the way to my shoots, I would wonder things like…
“Am I going to say something dumb!? Can I really deliver images they’ll love? Am I actually going to take photos I’m proud of this time? Will they all be in focus and useable!?” All of these thoughts clouded my mind before my shoots, and all I wanted was to be more confident.
The thoughts were so paralyzing, that I could barely focus on what I was doing at the moment. I wasn’t able to be truly present; out of fear that I wouldn’t be good enough, that my images wouldn’t be good enough, and there’s probably another gal out there better suited for the job.
Chances are, you may be feeling this way too. And if you are, then stick with me, because we’re gonna rewire your mind, beat imposter syndrome, and get you confident to show up and do WERK. 😎👇🏼
1. Take a deep breath, and pray before you meet your clients.
Seriously, it sounds so simple, but this really and truly helps you show up and be present – and it invites God into that space, to be strong when you’re weak to combat imposter syndrome. I usually pray something along these lines:
“Lord, help me to use my gift for a greater good today. Please remind me that I’m the girl you appointed for this job. Help me to shine your light into my client’s lives, and leave them better than I found them. Equip me with the tools to capture the exact moments that You want to be captured today. Help me to see them and capture them for who they really are – not what Instagram tells me I should make them look like. Be strong in me when I am weak, and comfort me when I’m feeling nervous. Help me to be strong, bold, and confident – because You are alive inside of me. You say that Greater is He who is in me, than he who is in the world – and I need you to allow me to fully experience that today, and for your power to be made perfect, and manifest in me. Thank you Lord. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
2. Remember that you’re the expert here.
… and that’s exactly why they hired you so step into your expert position.
They don’t know WHY you’re placing them beside that bush. They don’t know WHY you’re asking them to do that prompt or to face that direction. And that’s okay! They don’t have to. YOU are the professional, even if you don’t feel like it yet. You’re the one in charge of making sure this sessions goes how it needs to.
All you need to do is break the ice at the beginning of the session by saying something like, “Okay, so I may ask you to do a few crazy things, and I just need you to trust me, because those are the things that make for incredible images. K? K.” I’m dead serious. This is what I do every time, and it works every time!
Sometimes, I’ll even add a crazy prompt in and make them do it, only to say, “I literally just wanted to see if you’d do that – I don’t actually need it.” 😂 (That always gives me some super genuine and funny reactions – be sure to get those!!)
3. Combat those sneaky lies with truth.
… because going full-on imposter syndrome mode in the middle of the shoot is never a good time.
I know how it is. You forget your shot list. Your mind blanks. Your heart is beating faster than ever and you’re beginning to lose your cool. You have 45 minutes left in the session and you need some pull-a-rabbit-out-of-a-hat magic to happen so you can get these shots.
First things first, we’ve got to get your mind under control because this is the enemy’s opportunity to sneak in and plant so much doubt you’ll fake an emergency and leave the shoot. In moments like this when you’re vulnerable, I need you to memorize a piece of scripture or a mantra. Either one works to reset your brain, download truth about who you are and whose you are, and get your mind to avoid going down a negative and panic-stricken black hole.
My go-to verse is Romans 15:13 and it reads:
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (NIV)
It reminds me to put my eyes and trust back on Him because when I do that, then I’m filled with joy and peace. I don’t know about you, but those two things are exactly what I need in a moment of panic 😂 It’s a simple one-liner and I urge you to steal it and memorize it if you don’t have a verse for yourself yet.
Trust Him to give you the creativity back. Trust Him to lead the process of your shoot.
4. Invest in your education.
It’s both our dedication and our education, that truly make us bold in our craft.
Guys, I cannot stress how important this is. And no, I’m not just saying this because I mentor other photographers! If you could see how much I’ve spent to date on business mentoring, you’d stroke out. 😂 I kid you not. And I still do it!
It’s so important to be, and stay, teachable. If there is someone that’s where you want to be in your business, REACH OUT. Chances are they offer mentoring, and they would probably be honored to teach you. A lot of times we look at money as a resource we want to hoard and don’t want to spend, and feel like we need to hold onto. But you know what’s more valuable than money?
TIME AND YOUR MENTAL HEALTH.
And you can save literally YEARS of it, just by trading a little money for education. (Which saves you not only time, but money in the long run, because education helps you to be more confident – therefore you get to start charging more for your work, and at a much faster rate.) Anytime I start to doubt myself or feel imposter syndrome kicking in, I pause and say to myself “GIRL YOU HAVE BEEN THOROUGHLY TRAINED FOR THIS. YOUR KNOWLEDGE IS ENDLESS.”
Literally, you can’t not win here. I struggled to even mention this, because personally, I don’t like to sell – but dude… if I would’ve known this earlier, (that I could pay money to project myself years ahead into my calling,) you betcha I’d have done it the moment I decided I wanted to be a photographer. Just sayin’. 🤷🏻♀️
If you feel imposter syndrome coming on, don’t let it manifest – educate yourself instead.
… How can you expect clients to invest in you, if you’re not willing to invest in yourself? 🤔
If you’re really struggling in your business, book a free clarity call with me, (no strings attached,) for me to help you pinpoint your biggest roadblocks.
Then, if you decide it’s a fit and you NEED us to work together stat, we can totally proceed with a mentorship and get this education party started! 🥂
I wholeheartedly believe that if you’re here and reading this page, it’s not by accident, girl. I’ve been praying for this years mentoring clients, and for God to truly equip me with the knowledge and resources, tailored just for you, to project you into your next season and help you to be more confident – because THIS is your year.
It’s time. No more excuses. Let’s do this, and rise up to who God has called us to be in both our lives and businesses. 🙌🏼
Looking for more helpful photography tips? Feel free to binge on these blog posts, or pin ’em on Pinterest for later! 👇🏼
If you’re short on time, follow me on Pinterest – and you’ll get these kinda tips delivered straight to your feed! You know… when you’re scrollin’ through Pinterest with coffee in hand, ready to take on the day… or, procrastinate.
Whatevs. Pinterest biz sesh, anybody!? 😎🥂