The Choice to Be Present

If I’m completely honest, which I will be, I didn’t want to go. I had a million things on my to-do list, like responding to emails, editing images, finishing my new website, launching my first workshop. And that doesn’t include the everyday stuff like the never-ending piles of laundry, dishes (that won’t seem to do themselves no matter how much I ignore them), and cooking dinner. But my husband, this man who pushes me to step out of my comfort zone (aka on the couch in my yoga pants with my MacBook and Netflix playing non-stop) sweetly nudged me, encouraged me to close my computer and join him and Chloe at the park. They had already made the plan to go, now he was inviting me to join in, instead of sitting alone in the house. As he said it, deep down I knew that the highest priority, the most important ‘to-do’ of the day was to be present and to be Ryan, wife and mom.

It was to wipe off and put on my 20-year old pair of soccer cleats from high school, (yes, I’m old, and yes I’m that creepy person who can’t get rid of anything that was a significant ‘memory’ from my past…hence the 20 year old shoes). Because it was more important that I put them on and showed my eight year old daughter that hard work, perseverance and passion for what you love is what it takes to be successful. Successful in sports, school and business, but what I didn’t realize until that moment, is that it’s also what it takes to be successful in life, love and parenthood.

So, in our new geeky matching Phoenix Rising t-shirts (what can I say, we’re all in with this sport lol), we headed to the soccer field down the street to do some drills and show her some moves. And the giggles, oh the giggles and the smiles that ensued as I went hip to hip with my ever so quickly growing only child, was worth every precious second. It hit me that not only were Steve and I teaching Chloe soccer skills, and how to play with heart and aggression (anyone who knows me, knows how much I revel the memories of going toe to toe with opponents and even eating turf at times, but man what an adrenaline rush I get from physical competition!) but we were showing her LOVE IN ACTION. Not talking about how much we love her, but showing her by showing up.

When I mentor other photographers, the statement “it’s about choices” comes up more often than not. The choice to be an artist, the choice of what to charge, when to quit one’s job to make a dream into reality, the choice to run a business, and the choice to serve others through it. But today reminded me that how I spend life itself, something I take for granted, is a choice. What I didn’t get at first, was my husband was asking me to invest my time in them, and it’s something that I should have automatically done, instead of being prodded to do. I have to choose to breathe the same life and passion that I do into my couples and my business, into my personal life too. It takes as much intention and action to love ourselves and others well, as it does to love and grow our businesses. Yet the more we love and feel loved in return, the better business owners we are able to be!

So, my hope for you friend, is that you’ll choose a few minutes to step away from the never-ending ‘to-do’ list of today, and let life in. Just take a second to be present. Because you’ll miss those little giggles, lunches with friends and conversations with our parents, when they’re gone, on their own adventures, or on to another place, but today is ours. It’s right here, right now. Take a moment to tickle them, give a hug or make a call. Your business will benefit from it because you’ll feel happier and more fulfilled!

I’ve got something special in the works for those of you trying to balance your burgeoning business with your inexhaustible family. Pretty soon I’ll be putting on a two day business intensive workshop that will be especially beneficial to the momtrepreneurs, motherbarons, and maternal-magnates that are out there hustling their cameras off to build a future. One that thrives, not just survives. So if that sounds like something that could help you than click below:

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Email: ryan@ryannicole.com

Phone: 623-239-2853

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