Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Fresh start for February: How to organize your business ideas one day at a time

Balancing an online shop with a full-time job, family, friends and household commitments can be difficult at the best of times.  In addition to creating our products, we have to photograph them, edit them, , write product descriptions, list them, promote them… Then you actually make a sale and an entirely different process plays out…blah, blah, blah.

I get distracted very easily.  Quite often while looking for paper for one card, I find something else that inspires a completely different idea/product/theme, etc.  I have a thousand sticky notes with ideas, sketches, and to-do lists.

Last Christmas season I started using a Whiteboard, mostly to write down all the items I was going to make for 3 craft shows over a course of 3 weekends.  I needed to be organized and I needed to stay focused. 

It worked!

But I started adding monetary goals, timelines, custom orders, and soon there was no “white” left on my “whiteboard” and I wasn’t accomplishing everything on my “To-Do” list.

I needed a more realistic way to stay on track the nights I come home from work, too tired to do anything.  I was haunted by my whiteboard.

Then it hit me, I needed something smaller. Something that would force me to keep my list of ideas and tasks in line with the amount of time I have during the week (slim-to-none).

I created an Idea Calendar.  A small (6x6”) calendar, attached to some cardstock to keep by my computer.

I sewed the pages so that I could tear them off easily each month, and I have a space to record new ideas on the right hand side.





The squares are small. Too small you say? No way-- there’s a method to my madness. I can only write one task in these squares, which means I’m more likely to accomplish one task each day and not be overwhelmed or haunted by my list. 

I can write an idea down when it occurs, and schedule it for an empty day. 

This means I’m 1) less likely to forget the idea 2) and more likely to accomplish it.

{Can you tell Blogging is something I 1) forget to do and 2) don’t accomplish on a regular basis? Winking smile}

This may or may not work for you, but I’m going to give this a real shot.  Today is February 1st and it’s a fresh start.

You can create your  own calendar and customize it to what suits you.

I didn’t want to turn this into a spammy promotional post, but if you’re interested in one of these calendars, I can put them together pretty fast, and can list them for sale.  Nothing fancy or covered in rhinestones, just simple and straightforward.  Leave a comment, email or send me a convo from my Etsy shop.

If you have any other ideas for organizing and finding balance between your online shop and ‘real life’, let me know!

Happy Tuesday!

Ciao for now,


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