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Mental Health Maintenance for Business Owners

Note:  Physical health is more than just ‘not being ill,’ and so is mental health.  Sometimes people say “mental health” when they’re trying to put a supposedly more positive spin on “mental illness” – but it’s something we should all pay attention to.  The opinions in this post aren’t just directed toward those living with […]

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Brooke Snow - This is just sooooo good :) I’ve never thought of having a mental health plan in the same way that you mention it here, but it is so vital! My own personal trigger is not getting enough time to myself… it makes a world of difference for me when I get time alone in the mornings to start my day on a good mental note and then I typically need a mid day break from parenting where I can have time alone again and having some time at night helps too…If I have those small moments to myself I handle all the rest of life with so much more grace :) Thanks for your thoughtful post!

Tonya Damron - what a view!

Suumin Birks - Thanks so much for this post Jenika! I’m an illustrator, not a photographer, but I’m a massive fan of your blog and the insights that you provide on here. I’m sure most creatives (actually, scratch that, most people) are familiar with the “Things are going so well!!!” “Oh no they’re not…” kind of thinking cycle and its awesome to have some good processes to be able to prepare for and deal with that. Love it!

Bethany - Thank you so much for your post! I got out my paper and went through the three steps. Very enlightening! When I’m not right in the middle of being overwhelmed, it was so much easier to figure out a better way to respond to various stressful situations. And they should be really easy things to implement. Love that! One trigger for me is my kids whining. The minute they start, it’s like a little monster comes out of me. :) Instead of reacting though, I have decided I need to take a deep breath, go down to their level and explain that it overwhelms me and then help them to resay whatever they are trying to say without the whining. Sounds so simple, and should make a big difference! Thanks again for your post!

Kristin Kozelsky - Thank you so much for this! It’s perfect timing for me. I’ve been slowly coming out of a long period of depression and one of the things I find helpful is getting outside for either a short jog or walk each morning. Next step is definitely identifying those triggers and making response plans. Thanks for the insight!

Corporate photography - I agree completely with your need for mental health plan. It is indeed the need of the hour for professional photographers today!

Mabyn Ludke - You write how I think. I’m going to be here a lot! :) Thank you for sharing!
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The Easy Way To Write About Yourself (Without Feeling Like A Jerk)

It’s the cruelest of tricks. Your whole life is one long lesson in the importance of being humble (me?  My husband recently said “well, it wouldn’t be a date if you didn’t spill water on yourself.”  Yep.  I’m skilled like that). And socially, you’re punished from an early age when trying to talk about your […]

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Stella Reynoso - As someone who’s about to revamp her website, you’ve just made this portion WAY easier for me! Love love love what you say about how we can serve our clients. That was definitely the missing element, and I adore these mini-steps that culminate to the final product. <3 Can't wait to blog my experience to share with everyone – thanks for being so amazing! :)

Lindsay - I’m honored to be featured on your blog!

One of the things I’m most turned off by on a professional About Me page is insecurity or apologies. I love the concept you reiterate that you don’t need or even WANT every person who comes along to be sold on your services; you only want people whose needs are compatible with your ability to serve them. My husband is a dentist, and he recently told his boss that he refuses to sell dental treatment to people who don’t want it because those are invariably the patients who are unsatisfied and keep coming back with complaints. The patients who WANT what he has to offer generally truly value his time and service, and they are the most grateful and the easiest to work with. Even though he may make more money by trying to sell to every patient, he and his patients are happier when he focuses on those who value his particular personality and skill set.

(Also, I loved the jazz hands and insecurities imagery. Nice job.)
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Allison - I’ve been working on updating my about page for 3 months now, and haven’t been able to start. Your exercises got my fingers moving, so now I just need to put it together. Thank you!

Dawn - My About page really needed a bit of sprucing up. Thank you for writing it! I used to get that “feel like a jerk” feeling when talking about myself on these sorts of things. You made it easy and not too painful! :) Thanks again!
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Suzanne Nicole - I found your post really helpful -particularly ‘Write a letter to your 10 year old self’. This really helped me cut out the confusing explanations and get back to basics. I think I will have that technique in mind for all my writing. Thank you!

Lucrecer - It has been too long since touching base with you, but I always remember your amazing writing. This is such a good article and so helpful. I know the “About Me” page is a challenge for many. Me, included. Thank you, for this.
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tonya - gosh I loved this!!

5 Ways To Gracefully Rein In A Client Who Won’t Stop Talking

Photographers often share one common burden with practicing psychologists: Sometimes you need to get information from someone, but you just….can’t. The problem isn’t that the person clams up and won’t talk. Rather, it’s that they won’t STOP talking. Oh, you’re hearing plenty of words – it’s like a verbal monsoon.  But none of it is […]

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Chris Welsh - Great advice! Thank you for posting and sharing!

Allison - Company Talksalot. Hahahaha excellent points. #4 is crucial. It’s also great to use #4 when people are mad at you and yelling. I use that when clients yell at my day job over the phone. It makes them calm down like magic.
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lori b - These are great ideas to manage the verbose client. I happily shared this on FB and Twitter.

Erika Bischoff - Great article. Thanks for sharing it.
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Two Ways To Cure Client Revenge & Save Face

Today I have two morsels for you to consider, and I’ll leave it to you to decide whether they are related, and how you’ll wield them in the future. Thought #1 – A little over ten years ago, a couple of researchers set out to understand the phenomenon of “customer revenge.” Sometimes when a customer […]

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Andy Stenz - Spot on. Thanks for the timely reminder!

Terri - Yes! I think of this business trait as something called business integrity. The act of treating your customers with kindness in all situations. I learned it at the side of my grandmother when I worked as a teenager in my family’s submarine/pizza shop. She always treated the customers as if each was the most important person to the success of the shop. And I believe her attitude is what kept them coming back and eventually led to the expansion and franchise of that submarine shop in coastal Virginia and North Carolina.

Erika - Ooooh, I love the pictures, hee hee :)

Leni Moretti - One of life’smaxims: Be kind to one another. Your example’s were very helpful. Sometimes I feel torn between apologizing and wanting to show that I have my professional principles. It’s a fine line at time …

Erika Bischoff - Thank you for sharing this great and very interesting story.

Violeta Nedkova - Jenika, I love your psychology morsels and way of writing. You’ll be one of my “content marketing” case studies (mostly, the way to hack content to get clients) because you have it down, girl. :)

Haven’t made anyone angry yet, but that’s coming…
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Owen Lucas - Both instances have just happened to me! I have just won a fan through a humble apology to a client (and it wasn’t my fault – she was just too slow placing a deposit for her desired date of booking!); while I am currently feeling like I should have had an apology from a training course that just didn’t deliver what they promised. I’m resisting any urges to go viral you’ll be pleased to hear!

Owen Lucas - Both instances have just happened to me! I have just won a fan through a humble apology to a client (and it wasn’t my fault – she was just too slow placing a deposit for her desired date of booking!); while I am currently feeling like I should have had an apology from a training course that just didn’t deliver what they promised. I’m resisting any urges to go viral you’ll be pleased to hear! OL

Jamie Swanson - YES. YES yes yes yes YES! People need to read this one for sure! Thanks for such great insight, Jenika!
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Denise Karis - <3ed reading this post! I hate feeling blown off and I think that's what a lot of angry clients feel when they are frustrated or upset and on top of it, no one seems to care.

Brooke - I am amazed at the businesses that don’t take responsibility for crappy circumstances, especially when they cause them. Sometimes s*it happens, but apologizing and making it right – without being a jerk about it – can mean SO much to someone! I agree 100%, love this article and am sharing!

3 Quick Questions That Get The Testimonials You Need To Have

As far as lab assistant jobs went, it wasn’t the worst out there. For example, I could have been in the primate lab cleaning cages.  Or dealing with mysterious fluids in the taste and smell lab. Yeah, my job was far more pleasant – to stand on the main quad and collect responses for consumer […]

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Sarah Heggen - This article is perfectly timed. I was just fretting over the lack of testimonials on my website, and I couldn’t quite figure out how to ask for them without feeling slimy. You’ve saved the day! Thanks much. Now to get to work!
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Jen Trombly - I had to laugh when I read this blog… I literally had the exact statement, “Would you mind filling out a brief survey” in my questionnaire email. Yikes!!! I had revised it and have just sent the first one out! Whew…. thanks!

Megan DiPiero - Whoa! Just spent the last 40 minutes on this page and clicking all the great links within. Chock full of goodness! I have been thinking about surveys for the last few months. This is just the action-driven post I needed to point me in the right direction. Thank you!

Danielle - Thank you for this!! Great information I will definitely be using. And I am going to brand camp! Hope I get to meet you!

Shayna Hardy - Oh my gosh!! I literally just copied and pasted these into an email to a client and I received this amazing testimonial! I was crying when I read it… THANK YOU soooooooooo much!

“I would say that you were really more than photographer. You went above and beyond to make sure we were pleased with the product. Not only did you photograph our family but you came into our home and recommended places to display that work. The consultation is something you don’t always see in photographers. You seem to know how to market your talent rather than just “take pictures”. “

Jenika - Woohoo Shayna! So happy for you, and that’s a great testimonial to have :-D Congratulations.

April Bennett - This is such an amazing, site, amazing article, and the website ebook is absolutely amazing too! Thank you so much.

Katie Bertoli - This post was SO helpful. I just finished my testimonials page (and scattering them throughout my website too)! Thanks so much!
This is good for my business but also GREAT for my self esteem as I am just getting started. If I’m having a rough day I just read my testimonials! :)

Check it out for yourself:

Thanks again!

Jennifer - thank you for the very specific suggestions!

Camille - This was so helpful. I’m an introvert who hates self-promotion, and can never find a way to ask for feedback that results in useful information. I tweaked your script to make it a bit more formal for my corporate executive clients, created a form, emailed it out, and just got back responses from two former clients. They’re fantastic! And more than one or two sentence answers. I’ve got plenty of testimonials to spread throughout my website.

Thanks for your help!

Tonya Damron - love reading all the info here!