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NYC Branded Lifestyle Photographer - Blog

NYC Branded Lifestyle Portrait Photography Blog | Hi, I'm John DeMato, and I collaborate with thought leaders to create powerful, purposeful and authentic images. This is my blog where I talk all about the magic behind the portraits we create.

How to combat setbacks

 

How do you handle setbacks?

 
 

What keeps you on the rails when your plans go to shit? 

 

How do you give yourself the space to mourn, then recover from your setbacks?

I encounter this negative feeling a bit more often than I’d like, but fortunately, I have a way to channel all of that negative energy and focus it on something constructive.

When I’m having a rough go of it, I simply pick up my camera, go outside and shoot what I see.

I know, a real shocker from a professional photographer, right?  But hey - I was an artist way before I started getting paid for it.

It’s one form of self-care that I practice when the moment calls for it.

Unlike all of my professional, client work, I do not create a shot sheet, put together a schedule, or have any form of a plan in mind - I like to go into the activity blind, and figure shit out as I go.

I just grab the camera, walk outside the door and shoot whatever interesting person, place or thing pops out at me.  

Sometimes, my thoughts move me to the train and I’ll go into a random neighborhood in the city.

Other times, I’ll just take a long lap around the block and make it back to my apartment in 20 minutes.  

It really depends on how much TLC time I need with my camera.

I’ve taken these little departures from my workday in the rain, when it’s dark outside, during heat waves, while it’s snowing - I don’t let Mother Nature’s mood that day affect my decision to shoot.  

When I narrow and focus my attention on capturing interesting moments, compositions and activities, I find that I distance myself almost immediately from whatever BS inspired me to pick up the camera in the first place.

I place myself in a zone that forces me to ignore everything else and be mindful of the moment.

And that’s why this activity manifests itself as a form of mediation in my life.

I feel at peace with where I am and what I’m doing because, at the end of the day, beyond all of the bullshit…

...all I want to do with my life is take awesome pictures, and that’s exactly what I’m doing.

While all that time behind a camera doesn’t always lead to a paycheck, it certainly leads to a life of fulfillment.

As a result of walking around and shooting what I see, the frustration and anger within me wanes, which then sets the table for me to experience a deep sense of gratitude for taking the time to blow off some steam and create something compelling and fun.

Not a bad way to get through a shitty blip on the radar, if you ask me, :)

How do you get through those tough times? What fun ways do you blow off steam and get your emotions back to neutral and trending north?

Please share your strategy in the comments section.

 

PS - For those of you who aren’t in the know, I mail out these blogs 3x a week, and lemme tell you, they’re a real party, so, if you’d like to get in on this, sign up for it here and I’ll throw in a free gift for you, because I care, :)