“It’s good but....” I kept telling myself every time I was about to launch, post or share something. I’d go over everything not once but a million times before sharing them. I pushed launch dates when things didn’t seem right. I’ve always strived for perfection. Can I just be honest with you? I was scared to show the raw and the real side of my business, why? Because reality was I wasn’t all that glamorous for a Fashion Photographer. You see, this industry is tough, competitive and again TOUGH! If you want to be in, you have to not only dominate what you’re doing but you have to have a studio, a space where you can bring in clients for commercial and fashion work and look and work like a PRO! Or at least that is what I thought it was. But I didn’t have one, and can I tell you a secret? I still don’t have a studio, my studio is literally mobile, I built it in my living room whenever I have a shoot, like literally have clients come to my apartment, settle in living room where I have my lighting set-up and backdrop placed against the wall and get their make-up done probably next to my kitchen. I’ll admit, I’m Mary Poppins, when it comes to shooting, you tell me where to shoot and I’ll take my things in a a duffel bag and build a studio for you.
Truth is, I felt nervous when people asked me if I had a studio because I didn’t want people to think I wasn’t “professional.” I didn’t want to loose credibility of my work if I showed the real side of my business! It’s much easier to highlight your business without people seeing the nerves, stress, anxiety, fear and real mess of what happens behind the scenes.
But what happens when you stop and realize that what you are not doing or sharing has nothing to do with perfection but rather the fact that you might get judged? Is it worth it? Will that help your business? Will that help you? Absolutely NOT! Perfection doesn’t only come because we want certain things to look good or feel right, most of the times it shows up because we are afraid of what other people will say if it isn’t. Have you ever wanted to share something on your stories or platforms, just you in your pajamas or towel and be silly but you’re like “mmm no, that’s stupid,” but you don’t really think it’s dumb, you just don’t want to share it because of what others might think of it.
That was me not long ago friend, worried about what other people would say. Worried that I was talking in English in all my stories and videos and what my friends back in Bolivia would say because let’s be honest English isn’t my first language. But I learned that I can’t live for perfection and to meet anyone’s expectations. If I need to share things in English so be it, I’m here to show up for my business, and business for me is where I am at so I need to talk in the language my audience relates with. That’s it, I began to notice I couldn’t do things because of what others might think, but rather focus on what my business needs to nurture. Now, I’ve learned that, I’ve chosen to start showing more of my behind the scenes and bringing people along the journey. It was scary at first, to show the real and the raw, to make videos for my IGTV that might not be edited like a pro or share captions that are longer than average. But you know what? To my surprise, not only did people cheer for me but I got tons of messages from other photographers or creative feeling identified. Why? Because I wasn’t the only one living an average entrepreneurial life!
So, with all that said here are 5 reasons why you should remove yourself from perfection:
1.- There isn’t such thing as PERFECTION, no one is perfect and nothing will ever be. It might look great, be great, taste great, smell great and you might give it 10/10 but someone out there might not like it. And you know what? That is OK! Know not everyone will be on board with what you share, do it for YOU, don’t loose your purpose because among those who might not agree with what you share, there are those who wait to see what you’ll share next!
2.- Do things that allow you to grow as a business owner even if that means doing things you aren’t comfortable with! It’s ok to get vulnerable; it’s ok to show that you might not have the answer to everything! Believe it or not, being at a stage where you admit and let yourself be vulnerable, this will attract more people to your business than perfection. Why? PEOPLE RELATE! PEOPLE WANT TO SEE THE REAL YOU not the curated version!
3.- The only way to grow is learning by our mistakes, and for that you need to know that if you fall or fail in the go, it’s ok friend! That is part of the journey! Success never comes with just wins, it comes in a zigzag, rocky path and the key is to accept that, get up, rinse and keep going!
4.- Life isn’t an Instragram handle! Know this, memorize it and repeat it to yourself on a daily basis! Not because IG gives us beautiful grid accounts and what seem to be perfect lives, that doesn’t mean that they really are perfect! IG is a place where we showcase our work and maybe even our wins, but behind every account there are falls, fails and just a human feeling probably the same uncertainty you are!
5.- If you want to create more than a following but rather grow a community, BE REAL! BE YOU! Only you decide what and how much to share but the glimpse that you’re willing to give will encourage someone who needs it.
Remember you are ENOUGH; you don’t need to be perfect to connect and build a real community and a solid brand. You just need to be YOU!