Manifesting Photographer Podcast Show Notes

Redefining Success as a Business Owner – The Art of Scaling Back

January 23, 2024


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Manifesting Photographer Podcast Show Notes

Episode Summary:

In this episode of the Manifesting Photographer Podcast, we are introduced to Cait, and her journey from starting her photography business to reshaping her definition of success. She shares her revelations and adjustments as a creative entrepreneur, especially through the transformative experience of motherhood.

Cait candidly discusses the challenges and rewards of running a photography business while becoming parents and how that has shifted the way the couple has chosen to run their business. We get an engaging dose of reality as she divulges the nitty-gritty of balancing work life with personal priorities, an aspect many photographers can relate to. This episode provides valuable insights into redefining success, valuing rest, and setting boundaries to maintain passion for the craft.

Achieving Work-Life Balance in the Photography Business

The competitive and exhilarating world of photography is often synonymous with the constant chase for more—more gigs, more travel, more growth. However, what happens when the pursuit of ‘more’ leads to overextension, and the need for space becomes paramount? In a candid conversation on the “Manifesting Photographer Podcast,” photographer Cait shares her experience restructuring her definition of success from expansion to contraction, honoring personal well-being and family life alongside her thriving career.

Key Takeaways:

  • Reevaluating Success: Shifting the definition of success from scaling up business to fostering more personal space reflects a deeper understanding of priorities.
  • Valuing Time Over Expansion: Taking fewer weddings enables creators to avoid burnout and maintain passion for their art.
  • Educational Shift: Leveraging expertise to educate and inspire others, transferring the baton of experience without personal overcommitment.

Work-Life Balance in Marriage and Motherhood

The Intersection of Parenthood and Business

Parenthood, for many, serves as a pivot point—life tends to divide into ‘before’ and ‘after.’ For Cait, becoming a mother didn’t just mark a new chapter in her personal life, but also instigated a reassessment of her professional aspirations and capacity. She illustrates how motherhood shifts not just time, but also emotional availability. 

“All of a sudden, I was like, whoa, I need more space and I need more time. And success, to me, looks like taking less weddings and doing less work.”

Amid the joyous chaos of raising a child, Cait advocates for the undeniable importance of scaling back work commitments to honor the rigorous demands of motherhood. This holistic approach values the quality of her presence—both at work and at home.

The physical and psychological demands of parenting—highlighted by her anecdotes about the hardships of pumping milk while traveling—create a sensibility towards practical work schedules that accommodate unforeseen situations.

“I didn’t prepare for how much my business would change from it… I thought it would be like a little addition to the side… it’s such a life-changing thing.”

The takeaway for creative professionals is to stay fluid in business practices, adapting to life’s monumental chapters in ways that preserve well-being and support sustained creativity.

The Paradox of Growth and Expansion

Redefining Success Beyond Growth

In an age where success is often equated with expansion, Cait’s introspection offers a refreshing perspective. She observes that real success, for her, is now characterized by the power to say ‘no’ to opportunities, discerning which engagements are worth the exchange of her time and energy.

“And that was the first time I had really seen success in that different light. It doesn’t just mean… growing, growing and making more, but it actually meant more space in my personal life.”

This suggests that for professionals juggling multiple roles, success is not a fixed metric, but a dynamic concept that evolves with personal circumstances. It’s a strong note for others in the industry: assessing business models against personal satisfaction and fulfillment rather than just market benchmarks.

Transitioning to Strategic Growth

Photographers, like many in the entrepreneur sphere, book work well in advance, often locking in hefty schedules. Cait recommends injecting this planning with ample leeway for life to unfold without jeopardizing professional undertakings.

“I would say the biggest thing, give yourself way more time… Protecting yourself more than you think you need to so that… you’re still getting that time for yourself.”

Her advice underscores the potential impacts of misaligned bookings on work-life balance and the importance of pacing growth that permits active and fulfilling parenthood.

Notable Quotes:

  • “Success, to me, looks like taking less weddings and doing less work. And that was the first time I had really seen success in that different light.”
  • “We have to do what fuels us and what feels good as an artist.”
  • “Expect the worst things to happen and then still be like, am I still willing to do that?”


For a peek into the intricate balance of entrepreneurship, creativity, and parenthood, tune in to the full episode with Kate to gain deeper insights into how success is not a one-size-fits-all, especially in the photography business. Stay with us on the Manifesting Photographer Podcast for more inspiring stories and expert tips from the world of photography.

About the Guest(s):

Cait, is a passionate photographer who, alongside her husband Sam, specializes in capturing weddings, engagements, family portraits, and boudoir sessions. After launching her business in 2019, Cait transitioned to full-time photography. Sam, her husband and a videographer, joined her full-time in 2020 or 2021, complimenting Cait’s photography with his expertise in video. The couple navigates the creative industry with a focus on artistry and personal fulfillment, adjusting their business model in response to life changes, such as becoming parents.

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