One of the easiest traps to fall into, while starting a business, is the comparison game. It usually starts with good intentions, we’re are looking for inspiration, but it quickly unravels into question ourselves and doubting our worth.
Kaitlyn Montanaro owner of Kaitlyn Montanaro Photography is familiar with this issue. Today she has agreed to share her story and the strength she found in embracing who she is as a photographer.
The photos Kaitlyn takes are gorgeous and each one of them tells a story to the viewer. Her ability to completely capture a moment makes her the perfect photographer for any situation. You can find more information on her photography on Facebook or Instagram.
Tell us about yourself.
I have lived in Washington my whole life but am eager to travel and see so much more of the world. I love music and almost all forms of art.
So much beauty and freedom comes from following your heart and your dreams; I am so grateful I have been able to make a business out of doing something I genuinely love.
How did you get into your business?
Although I am still growing my business to be full time; I got into it by wanting to make my own path, not being held back by standards and companies where I’m just another employee.
I never knew what I truly wanted to do and have had so many different jobs. I finally got to the point where I had to really re-evaluate where I was needing to go with my career. Where was I going to go next? Could I grow there? Could I crawl up the corporate ladder? But I always ended up essentially hating every place I went.
Everyone has to put their adult pants on and do what you’ve gotta do to make it, but I just went for it and did what I could to become a legit business. I worked hard for myself and what I truly wanted. I had to hard core “fake it till you make it”
I found such a love and passion for photography. Capturing and being surrounded by celebrations and special moments makes my heart feel so full. I am blessed with people who believed in me and now, years later, I’m still here hustling to keep at it!
What has been your biggest challenge?
One of the biggest challenges I’ve faced is not letting myself get sucked into comparing myself to other photographers. I’ve learned to just march to the beat of my own drum and understand that everyone starts somewhere. It’s not fair to compare myself to others who have been doing this far longer than I have.
Growth takes time and we are all on different timelines.It’s pointless to compare and bring yourself down because someone else seems more successful.
What do you wish you’d known when you started?
I wish I would have known to not let what other people think bring me down but to let it drive me to work harder instead.
If you could narrow your success down to one thing, what would it be?
Narrowing down my success to one thing – I would say hands down I owe all my success to God. I don’t know what I would do without his peace and guidance through all the ups and downs.
Where do you see yourself in a year?
I see my business hitting another level of success and growth!
What are you top three tips for women going into business?
- Educate yourself as much as possible in whatever you are doing.
- Follow your heart and what feels right.
- Don’t devalue yourself or your work based on how new you may be to the business world.
What is a typical day like for you?
Every day is so different. I work another job on top of photography so I’m either at a desk all day, having a full weekend of shoots or am editing all… day…long…till I go cross-eyed!
What is your business model or quote you live by?
Great things never came from comfort zones.
If you were starting your business over again what would you do differently?
I would learn a lot more about the basics instead of kicking myself when I made rookie mistakes I could have avoided.