For quite a while, I was struggling with the direction I wanted to take my business. I knew what I wanted to do, but I didn’t know why or even how to execute it properly. Despite how hard I tried to DIY, I knew I needed help. It’s not something you can do alone. Back in December 2012, I participated in Team X’s Fight Club in Denver. Participating in the intense three day workshop with business coach, Jeff Jochum, really opened my eyes to a whole new way of thinking. I started my business because it was something I enjoyed and had a passion for, and somewhere along the way, it had lost the true meaning to me. Jeff’s ability to have everyone “Work Happily Ever After” and this thing he called “clarity” intrigued me, but I knew myself well and while the workshop would be a great jump start, I knew in my heart it wouldn’t be enough for me, it would just scratch the surface. I was ready to take some walls down. My business is so much a part of who I am that I couldn’t stop there, I immediately signed up for One-on-One mentoring with him and began this journey of self discovery in January of this year. As I am now nearing the end of my coaching, I’ve had a pretty amazing transformation in these last eight months. I’m literally bursting with ideas and more importantly, accepting who I am as a person and it has absolutely nothing to do with photography. How weird that is, but it’s true.
The pictures are just a bonus. Evidence of an experience, a transformation.
I discovered that I love working with children, because I love celebrating their individuality. My goal is to show parents how to love their child’s independence by celebrating their individuality, spontaneity and fearless imagination. I believe that as parents, we need to focus on raising happy kids, and not just successful adults. We need to Let. Go.
I used to think that as we got older, our imagination and ability to be dream are lost, but I discovered that that’s not really true. It’s been there all this time, we just have to let it out. We can do that through our children, and we reap the benefits of it. To be reminded that it’s ok to be dreamers. Maybe then, we can cut ourselves a little slack for not being the perfect parent all the time. If our kids are happy, then we have done our jobs as parents. And we can’t teach our kids to be happy, if we aren’t. And by happy, I mean fulfilled in life.
So it’s come time now for me to start making changes on the business end of things. Many have noticed mostly, that I’ve changed my name. Back at Fight Club, Jeff had asked me “Why did you choose Lightful Photography as your name?” I don’t remember exactly what I told him but I’m sure it was some poetic and romantic response about how it’s meaningful to me, and his response was “No, you picked a name other than yours because you wanted people to know you were a legitimate business.” Wow. Ok. That was like someone throwing a glass of cold water in my face. As harsh as that may have sounded at the time, Jeff was right. “Why do you think your name was not good enough?” I didn’t have an answer for him. I’ll admit, it took all of the eight months for Jeff to convince me that I needed to drop the company name (I can be stubborn at times 😉 ). However, my last name is quite a mouthful, I joke that if anyone can pronounce “Wojtusiak” I’ll send them ten dollars (and I won’t ask you to spell it, cause this is a blog post and that would be cheating, but you get my point). So we agreed, that the name Jen Lightful would suit me best. At first, it was very awkward, I’m not going to lie. I felt like it was an assumed name, something fake because it wasn’t my “real” last name. I’ve come to realize, it really doesn’t matter. “Lightful” still represents me, and who I am no matter what. My business is ME. All of me, and I’m glad that I no longer have to apologize or justify “being me.”
So that’s pretty much it. My website has been updated with my new “about me” page and images, and I’ll be utilizing my blog more so be sure to check in every now and then. I’m currently waiting on New York State to file my DBA certificate and once that is complete, I will be redirecting my web address and forwarding to a new email. I hope you will join me on this exciting new journey!