Start Where You Are | Lynchburg Wedding Photographer


April 6, 2020

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I’m Emily! James, and I are a husband and wife wedding photography team based in Lynchburg, Virginia. We specialize in weddings & engagements and serve our EH Couples in Virginia, South Carolina, and beyond!

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Nice To Meet Me Monday Series | Lynchburg Wedding Photographer

If you have been a part of my story this past year you know that I have shared some personal stuff with you. I have shared my business strengths and weakness, how we’ve improved and grown, and the behind the scenes of our life. I thought it would be difficult to share with you guys but it hasn’t been bad as I thought! I have loved meeting and getting to know so many of you this past year and am so thankful for your love and support! Now I don’t want to go into another spiel about the Corona Virus but this pandemic has got me thinking a lot about health in general.

This is going to be really hard to admit and I really REALLY hope I am not alone in this…. but this isn’t the best version of me. My health and self care is not a priority in my life right now nor has it been the last 5 years of my life. Gosh admitting that just makes a girl feel like a failure. Like I am ashamed of the decisions I have made to make me this unhealthy as a 26 year old!! I’m not happy or even the same person I used to be!! I mean on one hand I am the same person because I am who I am but I mean I’m not who I once was on a much deeper level.

Since my mental and physical health have not been a priority the past few years, I am now the most unhealthy I have ever been in my entire life.

And it’s not because of an one event in my life, my marriage, or the business that I am in this current situation. Up until now, I made decisions to eat unhealthy and hold truths about myself that are so restricting and negative. It’s no wonder I would turn to sweets and food for comfort all these years!

To be completely honest, I am scared even now to admit this. I know that on social media I am supposed to say “everything is great, I am great, life is great, etc”. That is not always the case my friend. I know that I am not the only one who feels this way right now too. I don’t know why but I just felt in this month’s Nice To Meet Me Monday post, it was the right time to share this with you.

So if you are feeling like you need to prioritize your health then come along this journey with me because I NEED accountability and you do too! Private message me and let’s help each other throughout this process!! I am READY to make changes and I think you know deep down, you are too!


Let me also preface this journey with: I am not following any specific diet plan. I have tried Weight Watchers, Keto, cutting out carbs, cutting out soft drinks, cutting out sweets. None of those worked for me because it’s just not practical (for me) to completely cut something out or follow strict guidelines. So I am going to be using a macro system on My Fitness Pal and eat whatever I want in moderation. I find this is more realistic in my current life situation.

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As excited as I am, I’m also worried that I will quit a month or two into this “change” I am making. Up until now, I always had this mindset about dieting and being healthy. I had every excuse in the books ready to spill out if people brought up my “lifestyle change” that wasn’t really changing.

I was believing the lie that this long journey would never be successful for me. That I would fail.

If you have ever started a diet and gave up because you slipped up once, then you understand what I mean. For some reason, I had it in my head that if I didn’t have a “perfect dieting week” that I might as well give up. My controlling tendencies had really taken over my thoughts. It was so unhealthy mentally which turned into being unhealthy physically.

If any of this resonates with you, friend, let me tell you that this no way to live life! The past few months I have been working on giving myself grace and it has been so freeing. The quote at the top of this post stood out to me when I was listening to Lara Casey’s Cultivate Your Life Podcast. “You don’t have to be perfect to live out what matters, and you don’t need a perfect track record to make progress”. That last line just repeats in my head now!!

This simple phrase broke down all the lies I was telling myself. I WILL FAIL over and over again.

  • Christmas cookies with Grandma? yep.

  • Thanksgiving gathering with family? Give all the turkey and mac and cheese.

  • Delicious southern cosine while I am on vacation? OF COURSE

  • Sweet tea with my Chickfila nuggets? The half cut tea is just as good!

  • Chocolate chips in my protein pancakes? You bet.

  • Ice cream every week or night? Perhaps not every night or week but yes I will eat ice cream!! It’s my favorite!!

And ya know what? That is ok. This doesn’t mean that the entire year or my progress up until then is for nothing!

What causes people to change though? The one thing I know is that what causes people to change starts with one pivotal moment. It’s the moment when you decide that the pain of staying the same, that frustration you feel right now looking back on 2019, when you think about staying the same and doing the same old things over and over again, when you start to believe that I actually don’t want to stay here anymore, when the pain of staying the same outweighs the pain of change, that’s when people change.

It’s the moment you decide that you are tired of doing the same things you’ve always done and getting the same results you’ve always gotten. This might be that moment for you. Now, you could just stop here and quit before even trying.

You could do that. I won’t judge you. I’ve given up on a whole lot of things in my life right at the starting line, but here’s where that might leave you like it did me. Going through the motions, not feeling confident that you’re on the right path, getting distracted, lacking motivation, you know, not taking care of what you’ve been given and generally wasting your time or you could end 2020 knowing that you lived your best year, with direction and motivation, but I want you see this in a big neon sign, but no perfection required.

Lara Casey

I know that excerpt was a lot to read but it stood out to me because I have reached this limit. I’m in my mid 20’s and things have to change!! I’m tired of feeling like I am 90 years old… These should be the “best years of my life” and it’s not feeling like it…so this means it’s time for a change.

I’m so EXCITED for this year despite all that is happening.

In fact, by the end of this year I want to be able to tell my kids and grand-kids that I took on this challenging year head on and it was the best year of change and growth ever. I know that I am probably in the small margin of people feeling optimistic throughout all this but now is as good a time ever to start. Don’t wait for that miraculous light bulb moment to start. You don’t need permission!! Seize the day!

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So one last thing I will say is that I am sharing this today with you to keep me accountable. I am also leaving this up for me. I will need to read this post again and again until I reach my goals because this is a long journey ahead of me. This type of change takes time and motivation to keep going.

There will be days when I want to quit. But how do you stay motivated during these times?? You have to know WHY you are on this journey. “Knowing what matters changes everything. Knowing what matters is the step most people miss in setting goals that last.” -Lara Casey

Yes I am doing this for me, my family, my future kids, my business & couples, etc. but the current reason I am doing this is to be a healthier mom to my kids. They are not on this earth yet, but I know that they deserve a healthy mom. So if this isn’t motivation I don’t know what is!! If you are in the same boat as me, find what truly motivates you whether that is to be bikini ready for your trip to the beach, run your first race, get into those high school jeans, or whatever it is!

To help remind myself daily I am actually printing these quotes I made out and leaving them around the house. This is a trick I learned from James’ grandma, Sarah. He grew up reading encouraging quotes on her mirrors and reading them every day does help focus your thoughts and can help you stay motivated!! So I will be printing these out and leaving them on my fridge, my pantry, bathroom mirror, my car, etc. Feel free to do the same if you are joining me on this journey!

Let me know in the comments what your motivator is and let me know if you are starting this healthier journey with me. I would love to cheer you on and help keep you accountable!! Thanks for following along this journey with me and I can’t wait to look back on this year and see what all is accomplished!! Love you all!

Until next time,


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Hey there, I’m Emily! James, and I are a husband and wife wedding photography team based in Lynchburg, Virginia. We specialize in weddings and engagements and serve Virginia, DC Area, South Carolina, and beyond!

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I’m Emily! James, and I are a husband and wife wedding photography team based in Lynchburg, Virginia. We specialize in weddings & engagements and serve our EH Couples in Virginia, South Carolina, and beyond!

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