“We all walk in the dark and each of us must learn to turn on his or her own light.”
My online story began in the fall of 2009, when within 5 weeks… my daughter received a diagnosis of a ‘high needs’ condition, my marriage ended, my dad died, my daughter was kicked out of daycare, my employment was suddenly terminated, and on top of all that I had yet to heal from a broken leg. One year after that Great Fall, while looking for work, caring for my daughter, going through a divorce, separating my daughter’s homes … I began building an online business as a professional photographer. All of this made me face the physical hardships I swept under the rug while working as a project manager in the feast or famine consulting world of environmental remediation were not going to fit well into full-time work, growing a business on the side, and single-mom-hood. All the stress caused the worst flair up of my conditions my life had ever experienced and after years of searching and interviewing for jobs in the environmental consulting world to no success, for the first time in my life … I slowed down, addressed my mental and physical health needs, and fully embraced my creative side. I declared myself a professional photographer and began changing my life.
When what should arrive in my world… an invite to Google+ BETA.
I literally started as a nobody online, I began at zero … I had spent my life as a self-proclaimed turtle, very little of mainstream media penetrated my shell (still doesn’t, that’s the power of living intentionally online). I had a few friends and family I shared my personal photography with in very tight circles and in July 2011 when I joined G+, I took the leap of faith into Public. It has been a steady progression, I have witnessed more than I can wrap my mind around some days and a future of amazing proportions has come alive in my mind. Instantly I saw the network’s potential, I got how social relationships were the future, and was amazingly embraced into the photography community. I made the commitment early on to take it one step at a time, to challenge myself to actually LIVE and LEARN what a camera was capable of producing, to identify my work as Straight out of Camera for that was what it was, to celebrate it, and to give myself the freedom to grow at that level until I had gained strength and confidence enough to call myself a ‘professional photographer’.
Then one day in the spring of 2012 the members of the photographic community offered an opportunity for online mentoring, I bravely raised my hand, and I was ecstatic when Ron Clifford selected me for his G+ Photography Mentorship as part of the G+ Mentorship Program for Photographers. After that mentorship I applied and was selected to participate in Ron’s 10 Week Advanced Photography Mentorship … both of those mentorships changed my life! They touched me by teaching photographers from all around the world outside the realms of space and time. My mentor was able to connect with me in ways I never experienced in over eleven years of higher education and/or online … he powerfully gifted me with the material I needed to grow and an online community to mastermind and blossom within. He created a space where anything was possible, I need only embrace his guidance … which I did with all my heart.
The concept of online mentorships inspired in me the possibility of making mentoring into another method of educating anyone, anywhere, not just for photography, for EVERYTHING … as a means to empower many to make a difference on this planet, to help create the change, and inspire people to live their dreams. The idea to create a network of mentors and provide them all of the resources necessary to mentor came to life. In June of 2013 I began mentoring online and launched my pilot mentorship on living intentionally online.
Now in addition to growing my professional photography business, I am the Just Jenuine Creations Master Mentor, I recruit Mentors to help grow the Live Intentionally Online network, am developing the Live Intentionally Online business model, writing a business plan, seeking investors, and creating partnerships … it’s all still in the early stages and I am Jenuinely excited to see just how far my light will shine!