I discovered GaryVee last year by accident really. I was searching for podcasts to listen to while out and about and on the road. I cannot remember the search string that I typed, but I decided to give him a try. One of the very first episodes I listened to, Gary interviewed a photographer and I thought, “Well, that’s relevant to me.” I kept listening.

I like what he has to say. The content he puts out is solid advice. If you do some research on GaryVee (Gary Vaynerchuk) there are mixed reviews. Some plain don’t like him for various reasons. That’s okay. Some follow his every word. That’s okay too. I think that I fall somewhere in the middle. I listen to his podcast, read his blog, and follow him on Instagram.

He’s vulgar though.

The way he uses curse words flows smoothly from his speech to get his point across. He doesn’t force it or do it to be “cool” – it’s who he is. His response to his critics might just be something similar to, “I don’t give a shit. Go create something for yourself.”

And that’s what I appreciate about Gary.

I don’t think he set out to be a motivational speaker, but there is motivation in his words. His goal from everything that he does is to encourage his listeners, readers, and followers is to get up every morning and create something.

To create that thing you’ve been putting off for a very long time. To just begin. It doesn’t matter if you have everything figured out or not. You just have to begin.

The book that I’m holding in the image at the top of the page is Crushing It! How great entrepreneurs build their business and influence – and how you can, too.

The book was gifted to me after I suggested to a friend to listen to The GaryVee Audio Experience. The section of the book that I appreciated is the section on personal branding.

I’m a photographer, but also an artist, writer, entrepreneur, employee, and a dozen other things. It’s okay to have a website and blog that encompasses all the things I’m passionate about. I’m human and I enjoy more than photography. My website is my platform.

In Gary’s words:

Personal Brands Are for Everyone

Strategically developing a personal brand through social media works brilliantly for creatives, as proven by the high number of photographers, artists, and musicians who offered to share their stories for this book when I put out a call for submissions. However, it can work for anyone in any industry who wants to put in the hustle. You no longer have to toil incognito behind someone else’s name or logo until you build enough cred to strike it out on your own. Of course, you can, and many do, often build up their knowledge, life experience, and savings accounts before talking that entrepreneurial leap.

Additionally:

Now there is more opportunity than ever to cash in on your passison than there was back then. Grab your spot, make your mark, and start living in the Crush It! universe.

If you begin listening to Gary regularly, you’ll hear him repeat statements about just begin, you don’t need more money, you don’t need more time, you don’t need to be secluded from your family. If there is something you want to begin. Start doing it.

It’s hard. I struggle too.

However, building a personal brand is a lot of social media posts. Gary once said everyone should be creating 100 pieces of content every day. I definitely struggle with this too.

I do know that as a photographer, I’m not posting for the likes, reactions, recognition. I’m posting for me because I made a promise to myself a long time ago that this is the life that I wanted. I’ve struggled with it. Almost quit a hundred times.

I’m moving forward in my journey. I hope that you’re along for the ride.

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