I will never forget the day I sat on my therapist’s couch hysterically crying because I didn’t have time to come up for air. I was smack dab in the middle of busy season back in 2018 and was booked more than  completely solid. And I was exhausted.

Sure the financial implications of an overloaded calendar were wonderful, but between the editing, driving to and from sessions, arranging childcare, and the emotional strain it was putting on not only myself, but my family, I was miserable.

And while I survived that season, I was so incredibly far from thriving. If I’m 100% honest I don’t even remember Christmas that year.

What my therapist said next changed my business forever.

“Kate, you need to learn how to say No.”

By talking more with her it was clear that I had failed to set up boundaries in my business.  I was saying “Yes”  to everything because somewhere along the line I had equated hustling and a  jam packed calendar as positives. And that just isn’t true.

Because when you say “Yes”  to one thing, you’re saying “No” to another. I was saying yes to every business opportunity that came along, but that also meant I was saying No to spending time with my kids. I was saying No to opportunities to be creating new holiday memories  with them. I was saying No to time for date nights with my husband. And I was saying No to time for self care.

So that day I went home and set up boundaries for my business. Mine are as follows, but are subject to change as the needs of my family changes. I revisit them each year to make sure they still align with both my personal and business goals.

1. No more than 20 weddings a year.

2. No more than three weddings in a single month.

3. No more than three portrait sessions per month when more than one wedding is booked. 

4. No more than one wedding per weekend.

5. No more than one December wedding.

Furthermore,  I’ve had to be more intentional about niching WAY DOWN to my ideal client so that I’m making sure to only say yes to those clients who’s values completely align with my own (but that’s for another post.)

So now that you know you NEED to be saying “No” in your business, let’s talk about the specific reasons WHY.  More in Part Two coming tomorrow…..

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