What if…

It’s been awhile. Too long actually. I honestly don’t even know where to begin.

Well, for starters…behind the scenes things have been super busy. Between consultations, sessions, editing, albums and life – 2012 came to an end in the blink of an eye for me.

But as they say, ‘every end is just a new beginning’. I love that.

A clean slate. A fresh start.

We get to plan, dream, and shape our future.

Seeds are planted.

***

We are with our imagination day in and day out, but how often do we take our thoughts seriously?

I think at one point or another we have all heard “don’t let your imagination run away with you.”

But why not?

Is it because we think our thoughts are irrational or maybe because we are afraid we might fail at something?

 We usually set goals we think are achievable by the ‘standard’. What if you are not the ‘standard’ though? What if you are the one that makes the difference? What if you are the one to raise that standard and set the bar higher?

Isn’t that our purpose really? To decide what we really want and go after it?

I think each and every one of us has the ability to achieve and accomplish our wildest dreams yet sometimes we lack the faith to believe it actually might happen.

Why are some goals easy to achieve and other times hard as hell?

I’m pretty sure it’s a mindset. Success or talent does not come easily without effort. Effort is the determining factor if you will succeed or fail. That and resilience.

I believe that our imagination is a stepping stone to our dreams and sometimes our reality.

***

I have some really big goals this year or what I like to call…dreams in the making. Some will come to fruition, and most likely many will not. But I am hopeful. I am one of those annoying people some would call optimistic. I think being pragmatic is boring – even though I can accept their rational.

Dream big and expect it to happen. Don’t just wish for it to happen, and please don’t set your expectations too low. And if by some chance you are met with disappointment, remind yourself it is just a detour, not the end of the road.

 I remember being asked by a guidance counselor in school what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wanted to be an ‘artist’ yet I was persuaded into thinking that they were not called ‘starving artists’ for no reason. I was told and I convinced myself to believe that being an artist was not a career. Or a well respectable one anyway.

So instead I followed a predictable path. I worked in corporate America. I sat behind desks and I worked in jobs where only numbers mattered. Not people. Cynicism was everywhere and I was scared I was starting to become indifferent to the world around me.

I worked the standard hours, I liked my job more or less, and I got the nice reliable paycheck at the end of the week. It was hard to complain. Why rock the boat?!

Then by happenstance I started a happy hobby and it wasn’t before long that it was all I could think or talk about.

I became obsessed with moments that could be re-lived and remembered.  Obsessed that a piece of paper, an image, a moment – held my history and everything I had felt at that second. It was ironic to me that a picture wasn’t something to see, but to feel.

Nowadays my life is very different. I get to spend time with couples (their family and friends) on one of the most happiest days of their lives.  I see new beginnings happening all of the time and I get to live vicariously through their adventures and their stories.

I wake up each morning so thankful for the opportunity to be doing something I love and making a living while doing it. It is never taken for granted.

It didn’t happen overnight as the Internet would lead some to believe.  I set goals that I thought back then were unobtainable, but I made up my mind that failing wasn’t an option.

I work harder now then I have ever worked in my life. I work nights. I work weekends. I work overtime and sometimes even holidays. Sick and personal days are hard (if ever) to come by. I sometimes burn the candle at both ends and some days I don’t know which way is up. I fumble. I fall. I get scared. I cry. I wear many hats. I disappoint myself, and most days I feel like I don’t live up to my own expectations. BUT through all of that, I can say that it is still SO worth it. Perhaps Peter McWilliams said it best :

“Be willing to be uncomfortable. Be comfortable being uncomfortable. It may get tough, but it’s a small price to pay for living a dream.”

As I welcomed in the new year and thought about the previous one, I couldn’t help but think of my clients who got me to this point. They have made this new life possible for me. A mere dream a reality.  It is one of the greatest gifts I have ever received and I couldn’t be more grateful for every moment they have shared with me. It is beyond a privilege to be invited into their lives if only for a brief moment in time.

***

What are your dreams, aspirations and goals this year?

Make this the year to begin to achieve them.

 There is more to life then pushing papers. There is something bigger out there to fulfill your life with purpose.

Maybe you don’t have a plan…yet. Maybe you need to be inspired. Maybe that idea you had – you should do something about.

What are your hobbies? What do you enjoy? What gets you excited? What did you want to be when you were a kid?

Find inspiration. Find a muse. Find someone or something you’re envious of.  Find creativity. Find whatever it is that makes you giddy.

When you find it, hold it tight and don’t let go.

Because what if that something was really everything you dreamed – and one day could be your reality?

Dreams will stay dreams unless you make them a goal and take action.

Live intentionally. Take part in life. Don’t just exist—LIVE!

Here’s hoping we all have the chance to live the life that we imagine.

 

S

   

My ‘boss’ these days are my clients and every so often they remind me how I’m doing by an on-line review or the most beautiful hand written (old fashion – and much loved) notes.

 I think blog posts are better with a picture so here is a small section of my pin board in my office.

 

 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

p.s.

Before you go, leave your thoughts below.

It makes my day to see you here!

  1. Nicole Misiano

    February 15th, 2013 at 10:57 am

    Stacey,

    Your blog post is the exact reason why Steve and I chose you to be our wedding photographer! Everything you do is with passion and honesty. The pictures you take will be shared with our families, and hopefully one day with our children. You give couples the gift of celebrating their wedding any random day of the week by looking through your pictures. I cannot wait until our E-session in October and then our wedding in November!

  2. Stacey

    February 15th, 2013 at 11:12 am

    NICOLE!!!! You made my day, heck maybe even my year. I thought my Mom just read this blog! : ) Thank you for the super kind words. It really means a lot to me that you took the time to read the post and stop in to leave a comment! So excited for our ‘playdate’ in October!

  3. Nichole

    February 19th, 2013 at 1:26 pm

    Every so often I check the Show & Tell Photography and Dear Stacey blogs because I love your work and love the way you write. I don’t like to read, but you make me want to, the way you write about your life experiences and the memories of others. Today, I was pleasantly surprised to see a blog post from last week. You are so inspiring!

  4. Stacey

    March 3rd, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    You’re the best! That you for your support and for always taking the time to comment!

  5. amanda-lee

    March 2nd, 2013 at 9:58 am

    I love this Stacey!

  6. Stacey

    March 3rd, 2013 at 11:20 am

    Thanks my dear! I really appreciate you taking the time to stop in.

  7. Jasmine E.

    March 3rd, 2013 at 8:20 am

    This is such a great read. Thank you for sharing!

  8. Stacey

    March 3rd, 2013 at 11:21 am

    Thanks Jasmine for leaving a comment and stopping in!!

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