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Welcome to our blog! We are a husband & wife photography team based in Madison, Wisconsin who document weddings & anniversaries for joyful couples who believe in marriage. This blog is a journal about real love stories, marriage & our own adventures along the way! We are so glad you're here — please stay awhile!




Productivity Does Not Equal Identity | Personal Post | What I Learned From a Bad Day.

November 12, 2015

Today’s post was not part of the blogging calendar (there actually wasn’t supposed to be a post today, but here I am writing one, so I have some explaining to do)! I always post weddings from the previous weekend on Wednesdays (+ also on Fridays if it’s a double header weekend). This schedule helps me to keep myself on track + not fall behind in my editing + workflow cycle. If you’ve been following the blog this week, however, you might have noticed that I didn’t blog last weekend’s wedding on Wednesday but rather yesterday, on Thursday. And would you believe it, we’re all still here. The business is still here. 

Our identity is NOT found in our productivity. That is the ANTHEM of my post today. A post for the small business owner, the blogger, the photographer, creative … you name it. Your identity is NOT found in your productivity. Do you believe that? Honestly. Do you? Do you feel that you are a better business owner, better mom, better wife, better employee, better PERSON if you start the day with a mile-long to-do list + have every single thing checked off by the time the day is over? Don’t get me wrong, being productive is a really good + positive thing! It’s often when we hustle just a little bit more that we see those big changes happening in our lives + in our businesses. Working hard pays off + success comes to those who choose it. We can’t just sit around + wait for our business to take itself to the next level. Or that promotion to just happen. Or the tasks around the house to complete themselves. I mean, we have to work. We have to do things!! BUT.

But, but, but. 

Do you find yourself thinking you are more worthy or more lovable because you’ve done x,y, or z. Do you believe you are a better person than so-and-so because of everything you’ve accomplished in any given day? Do you FIND YOUR IDENTITY in your productivity? Gosh, I so often do, + let me tell you, it’s NO way to live. Not fulfilling. Not rewarding. Not joyful.

I had a hard day on Tuesday. It just seemed like one bad thing after the next kept happening. Disappointing news, sad news, discouraging situations. You get the idea. And I just couldn’t get myself to finish the wedding for Wednesday’s normal post because 1. I was dealing with the things that were happening + 2. If I’m being completely honest, I just didn’t feel I could edit + finish it with the love + joy it deserved because I was just having a really hard day. So, I decided to postpone the blog until Thursday. In hindsight, + as I write this, I see how much of a big deal this ISN’T. I posted the wedding one day later than normal. But in all honesty, as I laid in bed Tuesday night + I remember I felt panicked + worried that somehow, some way, our business was going to suffer in a big way because I didn’t post a wedding on Wednesday.

So ridiculous, right?

But I believe, in one way or another, we all find ourselves in this position + believing these sorts of lies. That our productivity, our busy-ness, our to-do-lists + check-marked boxes — they define us. I’m here today to simply remind you that they don’t. They don’t define you. Your productivity does NOT define you. We ALL have good days + we ALL have bad days. Productive days + unproductive days. Instead of measuring your worth in your productivity, I hope you’ll measure it in the joy you bring to others’ lives + in the love you lavish on those around you. Because in my opinion, those are the things that are worth finding identity in.


  1. Ashley Durham

    November 13th, 2015 at 2:30 pm

    I literally could have written this blog myself. Like, word for word, pound for pound, heartbeat for heartbeat. I think that there are some of us – and I’m not sure if it’s a Type A thing, or the result of being a goal-oriented, ambitious small business owner thing … But there is tremendous guilt over truly non-important things – like posting a blog a day late.

    I don’t have any words of advice or anything like that, but I want you to know you are NOT alone in this struggle. You aren’t alone in the go-go-go mentality, and you aren’t excluded from the pressure and guilt we feel as business owners, as creatives and honestly – as friends with our clients. ❤️❤️❤️

  2. Maison Engel

    November 13th, 2015 at 10:01 pm

    Aww, Ashley! Thank you SO much for posting this 🙂 Means so much to know we’re not alone!! And I definitely agree — it’s a combination of Type-A, the fact that we love our clients + want to spoil them, + the fact that our business is an extension of ourselves!! So important to check in on ourselves constantly! Anyway, sending love to you from WI!!!

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