Last month my home was the feature story in Australian House & Garden, the leading home design magazine in the country. Pretty cool, yes?
I shared the news with my friends and some of my best clients but haven’t really said too much about it. I’m so proud. Really.
The house looks amazing and the story was 10 pages of prime real estate in a magazine with hundreds of thousands of subscribers. Plus, they included my business name and my personal story, which is publicity that would normally cost $$$$$$$ to buy.
The story had photos of so many rooms in the house and even multiple photos of my dog, Kona. It was pretty amazing.
And, the magazines ( I bought 10 copies ;-)) could be such an asset if ever we decide to sell our converted warehouse.
My house really IS as beautiful as it looked in the magazine.
But, here’s the thing:
If you’ve ever been at a photo shoot or at a studio where a show is being filmed, you know that what you see is just a small part of what is happening.
While the cameras are rolling — or in my case, while the camera is taking photos, behind the scenes are two assistants moving things a few centimeters this way and then the other way, weighing up how each incremental move influences the overall look.
To the side are piles of discarded items that didn’t make it into the frame: the vase that wasn’t the right shape, the throw that wasn’t the exact shade of grey. Further out of shot is the clutter of excess items that were rendered unusable and dog toys piled up on a mat, along with Kona’s dog bowl, blankets, and beds.
And, while we DO have a TV in our living room, the photo you see below shows no TV because apparently TVs are unsightly in home magazines. ;-)
Instead you see a beautiful piece of art hiding the television.
Our bedroom doesn’t have artwork on the wall closest to the closet, but it does in the magazine because the stylist figured that would be a good place for art. Out of shot is someone holding the artwork in position while the photographer snaps the shutter — having the piece in the exact right position for the photo. (Click link in P.S. to see this image.)
And while I love flowers, I don’t know how to arrange them the way the stylist did for this feature.
And while I often move about the house in ‘loungewear,’ on this day, I had hair and makeup done.
Our beautiful home was styled to make it magazine-ready. And she was ready. She shone brightly.
In a time when we can crop, edit, and add a filter to everything we share with the world, it’s rare that we’re seeing the RAW footage.
When we look at someone else’s business we don’t get to see:
- The business that operates month-to-month always on the brink of running out of cash
- The marketing funnel that bombed despite a ton of paid advertising, hundreds of people in a free challenge and more Facebook LIVES than ANYONE would care to do
- The book that took years to write and thousands of dollars to design and print that is gathering dust in boxes in a garage
- The leader whose business has a revolving door of staff starting and leaving, putting operations in a flux
- Things are not always as they first seem.
So, the next time you look at someone and think…
“Wow! They are doing so well and I feel so far behind.”
“I don’t know that I could ever be that good/rich/accomplished/popular.”
… know that perhaps you’re seeing the styled-for-a-magazine version of that person’s life or business.
It’s ‘show time’ and you’re seeing what’s in front of the curtain — the show that is being performed, not the chaos possibly happening behind the curtains.
Maybe knowing that you might be looking at the facade will allow you to give yourself some grace.
To know that you’re doing the best you can. To realise that turning your attention to your own development and growth; and measuring up who you are today vs who you were last week, last month, or last year may make for a happier life than comparing yourself to the styled versions of others’ lives and businesses.
You’re making progress. I know it.
And I’m so glad to be part of the journey alongside you.