I dreaded it for years. I didn’t want to be one of “those” people who use a photo from 20 years ago, and then when you meet them in real life, you’re shocked that they look so “different”. It was time.
For better or worse.
Now can you see why I say dread?
I did take a few steps to make increase the odds that I’d at least come away with a picture or 2 that I wouldn’t be embarrassed to use on my website or on social media.
First, I picked a photographer that I trusted. Catherine Murray who is here in Columbus. I feel like I “know” her but we’d never met in person. I’d talked with her years ago on behalf of a client who was opening a restaurant (she’s a food photographer too) and I’d seen her work on her website. I also knew she’d be patient. I told her I was nervous and not looking forward to it. I wasn’t trying to be negative but I wanted her to know that this was hard for me.
Next, I scheduled a hair appointment so that Shelly could work her magic. I always love how my hair looks when she styles it, and I was due for a cut and color anyway. I also scheduled to have someone do my makeup. I told Noelle that I wanted to look like “me” only better. She got it. I left the salon looking better than usual which was part of the plan.
I shopped for something new to wear, but in the end, I took 2 dresses (we only used one of them) and a shirt I wear often because I love the color. I decided that feeling comfortable was just as important as looking good. I didn’t want to feel like I was dressing up or doing something that wasn’t “me”.
The actual photo shoot went well. I was uncomfortable at first but Catherine encouraged me to chat and talk as she adjusted lighting and backgrounds. The ability to see images digitally helped a ton. Catherine showed me a few shots she liked and amazingly, they weren’t bad.
I changed and we took shots sitting, standing, in natural light, lower light, smiling, not smiling. I’ll never get to modeling status, but by the time we were done, I was so much more comfortable doing my thing while she took pictures.
I changed back into the top I wore to the salon and Catherine was lining up images for me choose and she stopped and said “stay just like that” and took another picture. She showed it to me and it was a great shot – because it was so me – comfortable and just hanging out.
I grabbed my sunglasses and put them on top of my head (where they live most of the time) and asked her to snap a couple more.
Can you believe it? I was asking for MORE pictures!? As it turned out I like a couple of those too!
Here’s what I learned.
– Avoiding something uncomfortable isn’t going to make you feel better about it so stop avoiding.
– A plan helped me put myself in a space to look and feel my best.
– Ask for help. Seriously. The hair and make-up people at the salon were great. Not just because they made me look good but they had me laughing and enjoying myself too. Big plus.
– Voice your concerns. Telling Catherine I was nervous helped. She’s a pro and no doubt would have known I was anxious, but talking about it took made me less fearful.
– Allow good things to happen. Be open to the experience.
What’s the worst that can happen?
What are you dreading?
How can I help you take action?