Getting super vulnerable on the blog today, as I don’t typically share struggles such as this. Many aren’t aware quite how many hours go into a photography business behind the scenes of just showing up and taking photos. That’s probably only one-quarter of the job, to be honest.
To get those jobs, you need to work on advertising, SEO, social media, networking, backlinking, publication, blogging, editing and countless other things. Different from many photographers, I’ve always loved that side of the business. But during this off-season, I got a little bit too obsessed.
Anyone who works an office desk job would know this – sitting isn’t great for you. When you get tired of sitting regularly, sometimes you change it up or become unaware of how you are sitting. This offseason, this was me. I injured myself. I’ve always had minor neck pain, most likely do to all the office work, but this winter it got too much to handle. I put it off a little too long, and soon enough I was seeing an RMT and a chiropractor – frequently. Anything I could do to relieve the pain.
I was starting to get a reverse neck curve; my neck muscles were getting really strong, in the wrong direction. I was sitting hunched with my head out forward too far. It’s funny how the body reacts to try and protect itself, but sometimes that does more damage to other parts of the body. I’ve developed nerve, ligament, and muscle pain – and at times, immobility.
I’ve been using this type of foam roller for a short while in the morning and in the evening to try and tell my neck how it’s supposed to bend. I’ve also downloaded a timer app to my iMac and MacBook reminding me every so often to look away for 15 seconds and that gives me the signal to take a check-in where my neck is. Less frequent than that, it locks your computer telling you to step away for 10-15 minutes or however long you set it. There is a free version, allowing you to get the notifications, but I may consider jumping to the paid version soon because it’s all too easy to hit “skip break.”
This week, I’ll be trying out this new Primate posture brace to try and make myself more conscientious of where my shoulders are. This is a little cheaper of a version. My only concern right now is it’s a tad irritating under the arms, but so far so good. Next step is probably looking into a new, less-than-cute, office chair. Perhaps a standing desk.
Photographers and desk workers, protect your body! Sit properly, keep your chin back, get a supportive office chair, get up and walk around. I don’t want to be just another one advocating for outsourcing, but every little thing you don’t have to do specifically yourself is one less thing to do to be able to get yourself up out of that chair!
I’ve huge HUGELY into automation, and fellow industry creatives will tell you how long I can speak about that too. If you’re scared to outsource but interested in ways that you can automate your creative business and social media, feel free to email me questions! I love helping people set this up!
Protect your body or you won’t be able to keep up with the job as long as you think you will!