The Cultivate Retreat, Telling Your Business Story

Behind the Lens

Friends, today was just the best. 

The Cultivate Retreat kicked off today in Tampa and I had the privilege of speaking this evening about telling your business story. Though I get to do a lot of public speaking and educating in my role as a University instructor and advisor, this was one of my first chances to talk within the creative industry and I am so very thankful! 

(Photo cred from sweet Sasha of Oh So Classy!)

As an avid (read: obsessive) learner, I’m pretty much a sponge for knowledge of any kind and I also have pretty high expectations of myself as both a learner and a teacher. But, not everything has to be perfect all the time and not every idea can be curated into a talk, right? So, tonight as I wind down from day one of awesomeness I thought I’d share a few quick tidbits from my session. If you’ve been thinking about the storyline of your business and/or your clients, I hope you find these 4 quick takeaways helpful! 



I hope I’m not the only one who has experienced a moment defined by a statement like this. Being not “enough”, either because you believe it or someone/thing else makes you feel that way, affects the story you’re living. Most days, I do not feel creative or like I am “a creative” but instead of using that to hold me back, I’m learning to use it to leverage other strengths. What do you think, would you say that you are creative enough? What about just enough? Hard question that requires an honest answer to start really working on your storyline. 



Take 10 minutes today and divide a sheet of notebook paper into 4 quadrants. Q1: What’s going well, Q2: How you can maintain/increase/ continue to rock out what’s going well, Q3: What’s not going well, Q4: What you’re going to do about it. Once you to this, really truly look at what’s on your page. What does you website say about your brand/offerings? How does it match/clash with what this page says? Re-assess, go back to the drawing board; focusing on getting your Q1/2 to be in a manageable state of awesomeness.  



Once you’ve got #2 figured out, grab a new sheet of paper, the notes app on your phone, or a little notebook and keep it on you all the time for two weeks. Write down everything you encounter in your business that makes you think/feel something. Stressful client meeting? Write it down. Favorite color rockin’ it on your instagram feed? Write it down. 

At the end of two weeks, take a birds-eye view look. This is a good part of your business story–pretty, curated, messy or otherwise. You might love it, you might hate it, or you might feel like it’s that book you buy in the airport because you just need something, anything to read on your flight. Regardless of where you end up, the story can be changed! Updated! Sentences scratched out! But don’t put your editor hat on until you give the journal shot. 



I’m not one for “#getitgirl” mugs and “Throw Kindness Around Like Confetti” printables (I know, I’m a serious, fun-sucker- ha!), but I can get behind purpose and intentionality in a heart beat. Whether you’re in business to tell amazing stories or not, we need to all be able to focus on telling our stories, not other people’s. Honestly, I think we do talk about this a lot in the creative industry but I don’t think we do it well. So, let’s start! And throw purpose around in abundance 🙂 




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for small business, life & photography tips, foodie adventures & portrait specials! we'll chat twice a month-- wine and dessert recommended! xo, L