7 tips to stay motivated, edit your images in a timely manner and keep your sanity.

Avoid Burn Out!

For many of us taking photos is the part that we are most excited about. This is why we started shooting to begin with, am I right? Then comes editing, which depending on who is choosing the images or how many images you have to edit, can be a daunting task. Have you ever been excited to edit a gallery, only to end up rushing thru the editing process because, well “life” happens; and now your deadline is fast approaching! It’s at this point we find ourselves with an abundance of images to edit, and if you are a busy studio, more shoots scheduled and an even longer list of pending task piling up.

These are the moments where you want to just get it done but have no idea where to find the perfect balance of time, income, and delivery. Editing is for most of us a huge part of our job. So, before we ball up on the living room floor and hide under the covers, let’s see how we can avoid burning out and hating our career choices.

7 tips to stay motivated, edit your images in a timely manner and keep your sanity.

  1. Cull Down and toss anything that doesn’t make your heart sing.
    Be dramatic in your choices. Only keep what you really speaks to you. I look for pieces that tell a story and can inspire me. If you really want to save time cull them down immediately after your session and have the client pick their absolute must haves. You will only edit the images that they will purchase and not spend unnecessary time on photos they won’t buy.

  2. Complete part one of your editing workflow; color correct and crop.

    Start editing your images as soon as you get home from the photoshoot. For me taking the images and running them thru the first part of my editing workflow, saves an incredible amount of time. My excitement and passion for the photoshoot is still high. This means, I can focus and edit with a lot energy. This is just like when I sell images to clients immediately after their photo shoots. The emotional attachment is still there.

  3. Set Timelines and Systems
    Begin creating your editing system with a timeline schedule for how you want to cull, edit step by step process, and product delivery. Now hold yourself accountable to that schedule. Place your schedule in your calendar with the your clients name as a reminder, and to you keep you on track. Setting up a routine might seem boring, but it will be transformational for your business.

  4. Use Presets and Actions
    The editing process can be even more daunting when we are on a timeline crunch or are overwhelmed with the amount of work we have. Make the process easier for yourself by creating or using presets and actions. Using presets can save time and make the process run efficiently.

  5. Accountability
    Accountability is the best way to stay on track– especially if you’re over promising and under delivering. Utilizing tools such as timers, calendars and task alerts will help you focus on your process and keep you accountable with your timelines. You can also connect with other photographers and do editing parties. An editing party is where you block out an editing window and use a timer to edit together. It is like being in an online office. It helps pass the time and keep you from browsing facebook or other internet distractions. Knowing that someone believes in you and will be checking in and is also working as hard as you, can often motivate you to perform better.

  6. Profitability
    Sometimes it comes down to one thing. Are you profitable? Can you pay yourself? f you don’t edit the photos and deliver to your client in a timely manner, you either don’t get paid or you can’t book more sessions because you are busy editing. Being able to take care of my family is a huge motivator for me. I keep a board with a list of bills that I need to pay, along with deadlines and income goals. One of my biggest motivators is trying to crush last years net profits each month. I am in competition with myself and my business.

  7. Award yourself
    What is one gift. you can give yourself every time you fulfill a clients order? It doesn’t have to be big, maybe as simple as giving yourself a small bonus, and placed in a jar to use at your leisure? Or it can simply be browsing the internet for inspiration for a couple of hours, just mindlessly getting lost in there. Taking some time for self care and rest is hugely important to help you re energize for the next task.

As much as we love being photographers, burn out is real. Disciplines and business systems have been instrumental in scaling my photography studio, and thriving in my competitive market. If you want to read more and stay up to date on all of my events, appearances, and educational opportunities join my email list.