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How to Find Your Why- Part 2

March 10, 2020

In Part 1 of this series I talked about the power of why, the importance of why, what why is and what it’s not. If you have yet to read that post. Stop what you’re doing RIGHT NOW and CLICK HERE to go read it before proceeding. Everything discussed there is CRITICAL KNOWLEDGE if you want to learn how to find your why!

How to Find Your Why | Marketing Ideas and Tips for Photographers with Ariel Dilworth

How to Find your Why

In my More than Marketing course, I help photographers find their why. Hence, the reason I titled it “MORE than Marketing!”

In the first module I explain how photographer’s run their business when they don’t know their why. And honestly, it usually brings tears for them annnnnddddd let’s be honest, sometimes me. Because sometimes we don’t even realize how foggy our windshield is UNTIL it becomes clear.

They watch a series of videos where I lead them through some activities to increase their self-awareness. I give them things to do that challenge them to dig past the surface.

As Megan states above, this process is “mentally tiring.” But, it’s a critical part of my proven process to find your why. The reason I do this is because self-awareness is the #1 thing that MUST BE IN PLACE for a why to be discovered.

Here are some of the activities I have them do:


Photography requires building relationships with others. We do it online in our marketing. In person during sessions and networking. But when it comes to building relationships, we must start with self-knowledge and that starts with personality.

I know some people feel “limited” by personality tests. Like they don’t like it because it puts them in a box. But I don’t think that’s true.

“No, your personality doesn’t determine your future. But it is that inherent driver of how we act. It’s what we fall back upon when all the other forces of the outside word (life circumstance, failure, success, other peoples’ actions, our own ability to be better and more charactered) are accounted for.”

Ariel Dilworth

There are quite literally one million personality tests in the world. Ha! But in my course, I have my students take one that is my absolute favorite as a psychology guru. The reason is because this personality test doesn’t focus on behavior, it focuses on INTENT. I like to describe it like this, four people can behave in the exact same way but have completely different reasons for doing so.

Either way, understanding your personality AND the personalities of those around you is critical to the success of your photography business. Not to mention a critical piece of the “how to find your why” puzzle.


Now, I’m not talking about journaling in the 90’s, “dear diary” fashion. Yes, journaling does unburden your mind and get creative juices flowing. But ultimately, I give my students prompts and quotes to help them explore themselves and their mind. For example:

  • What are some qualities you love about yourself and NEVER want to lose?
  • What are some traits about yourself that you hope you don’t pass on to your children? How come?
  • Write down the feelings and thoughts this quote triggers in you:
    “Perfectionism isn’t really about deep love of being meticulous. It’s about fear. Fear of making a mistake. Fear of disappointing others. Fear of failure. Fear of Success.” -Michael Law
  • Write about one of your highest highs in your life. What triggered it? What emotions did you have surrounding that event? Who was present?
  • Write about one of your lowest lows in your life. What triggered it? What emotions did you have surrounding that event? Who was present?
  • When you encounter limitations and set-backs, how do you respond? What’s healthy/unhealthy about this response?

What it has to do with your success

After completely all the self-awareness activities, including the two above, I have a one-on-one call with each student. This is one of the reasons I only allow 20 photographers to enroll at one time. 🙂

During this call I help them discover their why. The reason is because our why CANNOT be discovered alone. Even Simon Sineck the founder of the why concept acknowledges this.

Trying to find our why by ourself typically leads to us getting in our own head. We are two close to see the big picture. We can’t be truly objective. Having someone else to offer a new perspective and to see what we cannot see is the only way. Now, if that scares you, don’t let it! Here’s what one of my students from last seasons said:

And my life wasn’t the only one changed by “why.” Here’s what some of my past students have said:

After you find your why, my course teaches you how to infuse it into your business.

“Because your why doesn’t just do something powerful for you and your personal fulfillment. Your why helps others to see your unique value and inspires them to choose you.”

-Ariel Dilworth

And i’m sure you know, getting others to see your unique value as a photographer isn’t just a part of marketing, its ALL of marketing! By infusing your why into your business and your mission, you will connect with people on a deeper level. You’ll notice that people will start to contact you not because of WHAT you do but because of WHY you do it!

my urge for you

Whether you take my course or not, I hope you take time to find your why. When we begin to waver in our thoughts or our mission, it’s such a relief to review one sentence that sums up our life from a personal AND professional standpoint. Your why will always stand as a sturdy foundation to help you as you navigate the real world at any age. 

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