Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Holy Crow, Where Did March Go?

Seriously, I am getting tired of writing these pathetic, oh, my goodness, I lost track of time and now days/weeks/months have slipped away without any news on my sad, neglected blog. All that says to me is that I am not managing my time properly. Last month I decided that if I ever want to be a full-time artist, I would need to learn to think and work like someone who already IS a full-time artist. This means that I need to be beyond organized, step up my customer response time and schedule the hell out of every waking moment, not to mention my sleeping ones. To that effect I started setting some personal goals to strive for and at the end of every 30 days I create a report based on how I was able to do. Last month (March) my goals were to list an item on Etsy or Ebay every day, write in my journal everyday and implement a new time management technique called "time blocking".

Of course, I am 0 and three at the end of 30 days, but I did learn some interesting things:
First of all, the only reason I didn't make my "list every day" goal was because I went away for a week for training and did not want to list anything that I could not ship. I actually did pretty good, going all the way from the 6th to the 26th, and ended up selling more than I usually do this time of year. In fact, it had an interesting effect on my customer response time: when I was listing daily, I felt compelled to respond right away and was much more focused on actually getting some work done versus the apathy that has been eating away at me for the past few months. And as a result of that, I have some really fun custom orders to make in April. So I have decided to continue this goal for April and have hopes of actually meeting it, if at all possible.
Second, I wrote in my journal maybe four times all month. Really. That is pretty pathetic, but I either didn't have anything to say or was so grumpy I could not make myself write (and pain-induced grumpiness just makes me want to curl in a ball and do nothing). I decided to revise this goal for April and change it to writing in my sad, pathetic, lonely blog a minimum of 3 times a week. So y'all have permission to poke me if you don't see at least three posts here per week!
Third was time blocking, which is a method of time management where you dedicate a particular block of time to focus on a particular task before stopping and moving on, regardless of whether or not you actually completed the task. Yeah, that so didn't happen. As usual, I spent most of my time scrambling to catch up on orders, correspondence, and work on my stock for my rapidly approaching fairy festival. So I am renewing this goal for April, and I want to use it in particular for my standard production methods: my theory is that if I know I only have an hour to work on a step, I will work harder to get as much as possible done in that time.

So what was I doing in March, you ask? Well, I was planning my wedding! I had help, in the form of my charming fiance (man it still feels weird to call J that!), and we actually were able to pull everything together in record time. Our save-the-dates will be mailed out this week to inform our family and friends who do not already know that we are getting hitched on October 30th!