When I decided to make the end of Chan-Lo.com officially official, I was nervous than a mug. Closing one chapter is tough enough, but immediately starting another? Yikes! As I prepared to launch CNKDaily, I became increasingly aware of my power as a writer and, more importantly, my previous mistakes. I knew, beyond anything, that I wanted to learn from the past and take all of that bought sense into the future. So, I purchased a plane ticket. After deciding that LA was happening for me (because who wastes a ticket!?!) I proceeded to book shoot after shoot for our CNK Closets series. So, I packed up my Sony and headed to Los Angeles to start this new endeavor off with some banging new snapshots.
I hit the ground running in LA. No, literally - I ran off the plane because I was about to miss my car reservation. Haha. Anyway, from my first shoot I was riding that oh-so-lovely wave of instant motivation. The kind of genuine, no-sleep-but-I-don't-care-because-this-is-my-job happiness that only comes from doing something that a.) you love, and b.) has a sincere and genuine purpose.
My four days in La La Land were productive, energizing, and grounded in positivity. These four days also reminded me of a few important keys (for me, at least) to walking in purpose and recognizing the joy that comes in doing something you love.
1. Passion Is Consuming.
Ask any entrepreneur and they'll probably tell you that they wake up and go to sleep thinking about their business. When it's something you really care about, you just can't help it. At least 75-80% of your time is spent building your business and your brand, so make sure you're 100% passionate about it. For me, I love sneakers (that's a given) but I also love introducing people who inspire me. I enjoy interacting with people and showing a side of them most would never see. CNK Daily is, quite literally, a representation of who I am. While everyday isn't all roses and sunshine, your passion will fuel you on those not-so-good days and will keep you going when all you can see is the potential.
2. Never Be Afraid To Invest In Yourself.
Building a business isn't easy and it damn sure isn't cheap. What any other person may see as a financial burden, I see as an investment. I was talking to one of the ladies I shot in LA (Heyyyyy Grey!) and we both agreed that the path to being your own boss lady isn't for those who aren't willing to lose a little to gain a lot. Honestly, I stress all the time about where everything is going to come from. I could think of a ton of things that LA trip could have paid for, but I know that it was an investment in the bigger picture. Nothing is worth more than that.
3. Goals, Goals, Goals.
Be it for work, for your health, or for success, one of the most important ways to stay positive is to set realistic daily or weekly goals. Specifics are key. Check them off as you go and then set more. Before I left, I said that I wanted to schedule at least four feature shoots for my LA romp. I got to work, contacting people and maximizing the connections I already had and, voila! Goal accomplished.
Do you have daily, weekly goals? What are they? Once you start setting goals, you’ll feel accomplished—that's like positivity straight to your blood stream. No one can resist that thrill.
4. Trust The Good Feelings.
It’s easy to focus on all the negative things that happen. When you focus on the negative, that’s what you get. There were a few things that didn't necessarily go my way during this trip, but when spending my days writing on the site, going to a closet shoot, and editing images (from that handy dandy camera of mine, mind you) gave me an overwhelming feeling of freedom and purpose, I started to trust it. Even when shots didn't work or lighting was 10 kinds of sucky, I tried to focus on what I could do with what I had. The good feelings I got from doing exactly what I loved in that moment pushed me to be better, to test out new ideas, and to just go for it.
5. Allow For Some Down Time.
I went to LA to work. I wasn't there to play around or be a tourist, but allowing myself to enjoy some of the things SoCal had to offer really added even more joy to the trip. From a trip to Nike Town (duh) and isolating Friday night for some social time with friends (The rooftop at The Standard is amazing, by the way) to a hike at Runyon Canyon that was absolutely breathtaking, I made time for me. The wins will never be sweet if you can't enjoy them and revel in the moment. After the work was done, I made sure to enjoy myself. Whether you're on a work trip or simply going from your 9 to 5 to your 5 to 1 or 2 am, it's important to find a moment just for you.
What tips do you have for new entrepreneurs? Share them in the comments below, after you view some of my LA snaps, of course!