The Dog Did What?

photographer's dog

It’s happened to me hundreds of times over the 36 years in my business.

I am about to go in to a photography session, projection appointment, or other chat with a prospect. And then it happens. A fight with a loved one. A call from a disgruntled client. My desired political candidate isn’t winning. My favorite sports team just got eliminated from the playoffs! My dog decides he would rather use the kitchen floor than going outside in the cold to “do his business” (a polite way to put it).

Then the black cloud appears over my head. I get “stinkin’ thinkin’”.

I do NOT want to go into this appointment, and I begin to dwell on the negatives that have happened in my life lately. “Nothing is going right” I steam inside my head. If I have to do this appointment, I’ll just get it over with, and not give my best effort – I will “mail it in”. I just want to close the studio door and deal with whatever is eating me!

Whoa, big fella (or young lady)! – as my Grandma used to say.

Are you actually going to take what could possibly be the best session or sale or meeting you’ve ever had be ruined or diminished by the day’s events? In a week or so, you might not even remember what’s going on in your life today, but your client may not book with you, or have much less enjoyment from their portraits because you just didn’t give it your best! YOU won’t be affected as much as your client will be! In effect, the fight with your loved one, or the dog messing on the floor weeks ago will actually cause the client to have only an 8×10 on the shelf instead of enjoying a gorgeous wall portrait of the people they love!

My poor cat used to take the abuse!

When I was in high school, my sister was a Senior and I was a Freshman. She picked on me a lot and ignored me in the hallways, and embarrassed me. I got angry and would come home, and find my little brother and pick on HIM to make myself feel better. He hadn’t done a thing, but would cry and run off and find our cat, Scamper – and kick him! Poor Scamper would go hide – unless maybe there was a mouse to harass!

My Mother finally took us aside and told us to cut it out, and she said that if my sister, who kind of “started it all” could control herself, she should just come home and kick the cat and leave me and my brother out of it!

So NOW What – I have to go in to an appointment here!

Think of it this way: When you have friends over, do you show them the picture of your divorce, or do you show them the picture of your marriage? I am sure that most of you would say that you show the picture of your marriage. How about a poor performance rating? Would you display that on your office wall or your numerous plaques of continued excellence ?  Before I go in to my meeting or session, I do a quick mental excercise – I think of past successes, lessons learned from failures and improvements that were brought forth from them. I remember that most of today’s crises will fade soon – but the ramifications of MY actions today will quite possibly ripple out for many years! Do I want a positive, successful ripple? You bet!

Your brain is just like that. It is a photo album of both positive and negative images. And you can treat it as such. Keep the images that lift you up and let go of the ones that tear you down.

PTS Time – A Suit of Armor!

PTS stands for:  Planning, Thinking and Studying.   You do this first thing every morning, and it will make a HUGE difference in your day, even when you hit speed bumps in your road to success! Your planning keeps you on track, so that a “buffeting wind” doesn’t blow you off your path.  Thinking allows one to see days, weeks, months and years beyond today’s events – setting goals, short and long term – so that short term challenges do not deter you from success! Studying allows one to read about heroes – men and women who overcame seemingly insurmountable challenges to become huge successes! We can build a fine veneer of confidence around ourselves, to let the day’s negative events “bounce off” our “mental suit of armor”!

You are what goes into your mind! Reading the stories and lessons of positive successful people who overcame obstacles and became even stronger will offer guideposts along the way. You may often recognize similar challenges and relate to them!

I Try My Best To Be Grateful Everyday!

Grateful for my family, my friends, my successful in business, and my health. But I am also grateful for mistakes – things that go wrong – personal and business challenges – because I learn from them and come back better than before, if I am willing! Nothing is perfect – no one’s life is perfect (despite what a happy face they may put on their Facebook posts!) But as things go wrong some days, I remind myself to be grateful for the opportunities I have. We’re all given the same 24 hours each day, it’s what we do with them that counts!

As the great Zig Ziglar said – “The real opportunity for success lies within the person and not in the job .”

So, the long-and-short of this is:  be sure to set aside the things that are troubling you before you meet with or talk with or correspond with a client or potential client in any way.   This interaction may end up being one of the most important of your career, and it will be of importance to the client.   Dwelling on the bad things happening only serves to cascade and cause more bad things to happen.

You Can Do This! …..oh…And if you have cat – just pet it nicely today, OK?

Thomas Morelli

Bookmark and Share

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Creativity International / Charles Lewis Photography PO Box 848, Ada, MI 49301 | 616-868-0373