You guys know me.
I try to tell myself that I do what I want, when I want. For the most part, that is true. But I still answer to clients, HR ladies, my audience and my cats. I hate that, which is why I need to maximize my earning potential in my early 40s and peace-the-hell-out by the time I am 50.
(That’s ten years until a beach house, sunrise and sand. That’s what it’s all about.)
I need people to write me big checks.
But I wasn’t doing myself or my bank account any favors by going into my 40s using an Instagram picture as my professional photo. Who gives money to an adult who takes a selfie in a hotel room? (Well, lots of people. But I don’t want that kind of money.)
So I decided to have a new corporate headshot taken.
I picked a local photographer who was recommended by a friend. (That’s the speed of trust, baby.) I told the photographer, “I just need 1-2 pictures of me looking like myself, only better. I want people to see me on the internet and feel compelled to write a check. I don’t want to look like I’m trying too hard, either. I need help walking that line.”
It’s tough not to be hard on yourself when someone takes your photograph.
I am a self-obsessed narcissist. I’m trying to change those behaviors, but I asked my photographer to hold off showing me the photo gallery until it was ready for a final review. Nobody needs to hear my inner, critical voice. (Especially me.)
I also told her, “No hokey portraits, please.” But we had the studio for a few hours, and my photographer suggested that we play around. I never had high school photos taken beyond my awful yearbook photos. It was sorta fun. We laughed a lot. I won’t do anything with the photos, but it was still fun to pretend that I was Beyoncé.
I’m very happy with the final two results.
Modeling for a photo is daunting.
Putting your face and body on the internet is always awkward. People will write insane things; however, a good corporate headshot will opens doors in ways that are indescribable.
So if you have a career where you’re selling yourself—even in a professional way—you have to invest in a semi-decent photograph. Find a photographer who aligns with your values and write the check. I picked Kathy Howard, and we worked with Joanne Maye for hair and make-up.
Go for it. Trust the photographer. Don’t judge yourself. Take a million photos. You only need one or two.
And one more piece of advice? Champagne helps.