The Don't Quit Podcast

The Get Motivated Series: Nora Wendel, Founder of The Photo Forest

What's your Name?

Nora Wendel

What’s your business or occupation about?

My latest venture is The Photo Forest, it’s going to be the first community driven stock photography platform where members get to request the type of images they need! I am on a mission to revolutionize the stock photography industry!

I like to call myself a Creatress of Beauty as every passion or product I create revolves around the theme of making my world a more beautiful place.

The Photo Forest is my fourth online business all within the span of 5 years so you can also call me a serial #fempreneur as well.

My background is in visual communication, design and creativity, oh and does being born as a nomad count as well?

What does your average day look like?

As I run my own schedule, I don’t have an ‘average’ day and I love that fact!

Self care is my number one priority as an entrepreneur and I wouldn’t be able to work on my laptop without some form of movement and expression of creativity.

Meditation or as I like to call it ‘sitting within myself’ is one of my non-negotiables, and of course my yoga practice, a dance class or a long walk.

On any given day you can find me;
• On my yoga mat at home or at a class
• Going to pottery
• Moving in 5 Rhythms flow dance or going to an ecstatic dance class
• Working at home or in a co-working space (when I want some fellow entrepreneurial company)
• Attending an entrepreneurial meet up
• Hula hooping outside or in a hoop jam
• Watching sunset

I just love being able to be flexible with my time, and of course running online businesses that allow me to work from anywhere! I travel often from Cape Town to Bali to Hong Kong to Europe so I never have to take ‘days off’ work as work can follow my dreams of where I want to be!

What’s the hardest part about your work?

The hardest part for me was to get used to the fact that ultimately I am working alone. I do miss working in a team and being able to have input and creative ideas from a variety of people.

I did have a business partner in one of my online businesses but it didn’t work out the way I thought it would. I run all of my other businesses by myself. I am just starting to outsource some of my work tasks to developers, designers and VA’s around the world.

I have been in control of my own businesses for the last 5 years, so I can also
say that I find it hard to give up the control! However, now that I have, I have more free time to work on the parts of my businesses that really light me up! Like connecting with people, like traveling and working or planning my next business which will be around business and wellness immersions!

What keeps you motivated?

The Photo Forest is my biggest venture yet and we are only in pre-launch mode at the time of writing! (We launch mid October 2016). I have had many mindset blocks and self-doubts about being able to run a global online business, which is what The Photo Forest is going to be.

However, every single morning when I check my social media accounts and emails for The Photo Forest I see comments from strangers across the planet that are telling me what a great idea this is and that THEY can’t wait for us to launch. This has been such a humbling experience for me and has kept me excited and motivated to continue to build this platform that in the end will serve others.

What’s the best productivity method that works for you?

I try and do two things every night when I am in bed.

The first is I do a brain dump of every single thought that is floating around my head. It doesn’t matter what it relates to – everything gets written down. I then have a visual representation of my to do list. Out of that I can then categorize my lists into business, health, life etc. I then write the most important actions that I need to take the next day to move forward in that category. Saves me a lot of time the next day as I know what I have to do already!

The second thing I do might be considered a little ‘out there’ for some people but I have a mindset tool that I use which works for me. It’s called Emotional Freedom Technique or EFT and it relates to tapping on certain meridian points on the body while thinking about what is bothering you and what you want to achieve (it’s more complex then that but that was the simplified explanation!) I do EFT usually as the last thing before I fall asleep and it sets up my thought patterns so I can be clearer and more confident the next day. Give it a try!

How do you recharge?

I am sure you can guess what I am going to say! I recharge by being off the computer and allowing my creativity to express itself through physical movement or creation of something (ie. In pottery).

I notice that if I am not able to let my creativity flow then I start to get more negative thought patterns and self- doubt starts to creep in. No one wants that right? So I keep flowing, moving and creating!

What’s the best advice you’ve ever heard?

The motto that I live by is

if not now, then when?”

If you have an idea, why wait five years to start working on it? If your dream is to travel to Fiji, why wait till you think you have enough ‘time’ to go?

If you don’t do something now then you’re most likely never going to do it.

The only time we have is NOW. You hear this being said from everyone from Eckhart Tolle to the ancient sages in India. But you know what? It’s true!

That is why I live the life of a digital #fempreneur nomad. I am living in my NOW and if that means I go to a yoga class at 12pm then I am going to do it because it’s my life and if I don’t do it now, it’s not going to happen!

What’s something that you haven’t said, but is worth mentioning?

Have some self-compassion. Be kind to yourself, especially if you’re working for yourself.

It is too easy to get stuck into the;

• ‘I should have done this’
• ‘Why didn’t I complete that in time’
• ‘I am not good enough…’

Honestly, forget all of those thoughts, instead soften your heart a little bit, go on try it right now – feel the muscles in your chest relax a little bit. There you go, doesn’t that feel better already?

You will be surprised at how much more you can accomplish on your to do list if you allow yourself a little leeway.

It’s OK. Everything will be alright. Tell that to yourself instead….

You can find Nora and her design work over on

Go and check out her new stock photography platform The Photo Forest :


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