That’s fine

Is it really? I was having a discussion with my wife the other day and was trying to explain my confusion about the wedding guest list she had to prepare for my son’s upcoming wedding. I knew that she wasn’t very happy with my explanation when she replied with a “that’s fine.”

I took it as sarcasm. You can compare it to what’s often said down south when someone says “bless his/her heart” when the person it’s directed at has made an attempt at doing or saying something that doesn’t meet your standards. Or that you think is below your standards.

It’s a low-level insult, but an insult nonetheless. The one saying it might not realize he or she has uttered something offensive if he or she doesn’t pick up on certain signs from the other person. I’m not sure the signs I gave were the right ones.

The guest list my son wanted from her were the names of my wife’s close friends who were planning on attending, not the entire guest list of everyone. When my wife told me she had to get the guest list ready I thought she meant names of everyone, not just the names of her friends. When I tried explaining why I was confused she said: “that’s fine.” I don’t think my explanation lived up to her standards, bless my heart.

I should learn how to have discussions without explaining myself.

Self-marketing: BLECH!!

Whenever I research ways to improve my photography business I usually come across articles that mention self-marketing. And that’s usually when I stop reading. What is it about promoting myself that I don’t like? Everything. Personal branding is narcissistic. Some articles tell you that self-marketing “improves your image and reputation” allowing you to advance in your chosen career. That might be true for a twenty-something but I think it’s a little different for a sixty-something. My image and reputation were set many years ago, and now neither of them makes any difference. That’s just the way it is. So, what sort of self-marketing or personal branding could I do that doesn’t make me feel like I’m a narcissist?

I’ve been uploading my photographs to a website called Flickr, I think it’s probably the best way for me to self-market my photography business. I’ve also chosen to set up a Facebook page and, of course, there’s my blog, here, that serves the purpose too. None of this feels like self-marketing, but I suppose it is. Perhaps as long as I don’t have to market myself in person I’ll feel okay about it.

I guess I should explain why I’m italicizing “business.” It’s because my photography business isn’t a legitimate business. I have no tax number, no business address, no legal documentation or anything that would make TC Conner Photography a legitimate business. Yes, I have a Facebook page and yes, I sometimes do paid photo shoots for family and friends. But I don’t make enough money to warrant tax reports to the IRS. I took a stab at it once, and discovered that self-marketing and the initial investment dollars and all the other stuff you have to do to get a business up and running(?) just wasn’t for me. It could’ve, and probably should’ve been for me 50 years ago, today however this sixty-something is on the downhill slide to full retirement. Furthermore, worrying about all the “should haves” and “could haves” gets you nowhere.

What sort of self-marketing or personal branding could I do? The simple, and probably the only answer: None.