Get your feet wet...
Spontaneity isn't something that comes easily to me.
I'm a girl who likes a plan. A plan that comes accompanied by several lists, google calendar entries and at times even an excel spreadsheet. But sometimes life just doesn't allow for that kind of forethought. The last few months have felt like a complete whirlwind and have thrown all my well-made plans out the window and onto the proverbial bonfire.
I had planned to get my MA finished by September, find a part time job, continue building a career as a professional photographer, and finally move out of my mother's loft! But life/fate/luck (call it what you will), well it had other ideas.
Part way through May I got a phone call from the Director of the UK Corporate Games, asking whether I'd be interested in providing the official photography for the games... a four day event, involving 22 sports and over 4000 participants, which was due to be held at the beginning of July. Without thinking I said 'YES' - I mean who wouldn't? Sports photography isn't really my bag, but it was an opportunity for my little start-up Dollymix Media to get it's name out there and to work with some well-known multi-national companies.
So June came and went amongst a flurry of recruiting, organising, and ordering all the materials needed. I learnt so much in that month and the month that followed, (which then involved sorting 15,000 photographs, responding to orders, compliments and complaints).
It was a complete emotional roller-coaster. From feeling on top of the world at making sales, to shaking in a corner at the amount of emails I had to respond to. Logistically I've never had to organise anything on that scale - and had I really known just how much work it would have involved I'd of probably kept my feet firmly planted in my well made plans and said no.
Saying yes to that one event has thrown my life into chaos for the last three months. I have about 8 photo shoots backed up waiting to be edited and shared with the world. My MA probably won't get finished until January, and I've had no time to work on securing photography bookings for 2014. And that's not even touching on the neglect that my poor friends and family have faced as a result of my constant 'I'm too busy' status.
But despite of all of that I don't regret saying yes.
Taking that unplanned step into the unknown has given me the kick up the backside that I needed to stop planning and start doing. I'll probably never be sperated from my lists entirely, but I think we can plan ourselves into stagnation sometimes.
Life is constantly offering us chances to take a risk. Sometimes it works out and sometimes it doesn't. But if you don't get your feet wet at least once in a while, they'll probably end up dry and crusty.