#DIYDaycare: Update From the Thick of It PLUS Videos!



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Katie Hellmuth's picture
All #SmallBizDiary Entries by Katie Hellmuth
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Typing this as fast as I can because writing a next installment of #DIYDaycare has been on my todo list for two weeks now, and that's a very long aging time for my todo list! My 2 year old is finally in a nap which is a processes, so I have limited time to do work that is brain-related. But don't skip this installment, because I've just launched a mini-video series of #DIYDaycare, and those videos are at the bottom of this post (so scroll down to skip this stuff and get to the "play" button).

It's the middle of summer and we've already been on one road-trip vacation where I had to call in as a regular listener to our weekly #TuneUps (I love calling in and listening to Sabina and our guests dish about small biz strategy and insight - which are available as recordings right here for you!). I've had to be a silent listener on nearly all of our #TuneUps lately because of my #DIYDaycare schedule, and one of these days I'm going to pop out of the phone and surprise Sabina by hitting *6 to unmute myself. LOL.

Anyway, much to tell you about what I've learned running this #DIYDaycare program, but I'll boil it down to this:

  • Daily ToDo List is Mandatory. When I go to bed, in the silence of my room, I type my todo list into my iPhone calendar. It's not an alert that pops up to stress me out. It's just a calm little list that is broken down into important things. That way, I know what to jump into when I have a window of a work session without have anxiety about "ooohh...what to do first?! So little time!?" I already know, and the items are small and large, so depending on the work window, I can start one. Sometimes, sending an email to someone is very important. Like following up on an advertising pitch. Or actually sending a pitch to be in a magazine. I usually write those emails in the morning when I have "good brain" and see if anyone follows up during the day. Writing articles like the one you are reading now is harder because it takes think-time, which is why I must be realistic in my list-making and assign one or two articles a week to myself (I write articles for Tin Shingle and for my local blog A Little Beacon Blog). The list is easy and looks like this: - sign if it's not done, and + sign if it is done:

    ToDo List from Katie's DIYDaycare Work Schedule

  • Teams are Mandatory. Sabina and I have been building Tin Shingle for a number of years. We now have Jackie and Ashley, two wonder-women who do a lot of the every day stuff. Finally this year, I let go of newsletter production, and even let Sabina be in charge of putting together images. Sometimes, if Jackie and myself are unavailable for making images, she makes her own (could you spot her style in this picture of Sabina in a canoe?). But this wouldn't be possible without plates spinning by other people. No doubt. And my gratitude goes out to Team Tin Shingle.
  • Forgiveness: I learned this last year, but forgiveness of self if I don't get these todo list items done, and to let it go when my kids need me. Key to the success of a good day is if I give my kids a dedicated dose of Mommy-time without being on the phone or attached to a computer, and if I give my work some dedicated Katie-time without little heads needing more apple juice. In the end, whatever needs to happen work-wise will work itself out. The relationship I have with my kids will be the rock of all that I get done professionally.

DIYDaycare Paint Project

Sabina has insisted that I make videos of life inside of #DIYDaycare. So here they are. From now on, they will just be posted one at a time with each SmallBizDiary entry :)  If you can't see these videos, click here to see them in YouTube.