Posts tagged productivity
Everyday Shortcuts

When it seems like there's constantly more things we need to make space for in our days, it pays to save time wherever you can. This is why I love keyboard shortcuts. I can easily navigate various digital actions without constantly jumping back and forth between my keyboard and mouse, and hardly ever touching that top menu.

Today I'm excited to share my must-have shortcuts with your digital life. A lot of these you might already be familiar with, but you may also find some gems here as well. That said, cheers to taking the easy way!

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Put Your Work First

I think we can all agree that now more than ever it's hard to find time for ourselves—whether that means getting your portfolio website up-to-date, finding the time to exercise, or making the time for that project you've been dreaming of starting. When our jobs and responsibilities and the world come knocking, our stuff gets pushed aside.

“I'll get to it next time,” you tell yourself. “Someday when I have more time.” But it never happens, does it?

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The Keys to Consistency

When folks sign up for my branding newsletter, the first thing I ask is “what are you struggling with in your brand?” When I first created my newsletter, I expected the answers to be all over the place and while there's been a decent variety, over time I've noticed a trend.

Consistency is tough for all of us

It seems like so many of you struggle with being consistent in your brands. I totally get it. Consistency is a complex, relentless beast.

You've got all these ideas, but you don't know where to start. There are so many responsibilities, distractions, and “shoulds” pulling at you every second of every day. Sometimes you just can't find your groove. And on top of all that, you can't help nitpicking at your own brand as it starts to feel lackluster and stale.

So how in the heck are you supposed to be consistent with the weight of all this dragging you down? I wish I could tell you there's some magic formula, and while I can provide a guide I can't promise you it will be easy. But sometimes a shot of honesty and insight is just what you need to get your head right and find your focus.

So with that in mind, these are the steps that help me be more consistent. I hope they can do the same for you!

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Working to Live

In a “live to work” world that's relentlessly obsessed with “the hustle” it can be tough to know when it's time to clock out, especially when you're trying to hone your craft and/or build a business. It's a topsy turvy balance act, trying to give work your all while also prioritizing your loved ones and your own needs. Trust me, we're all working on it and no one's got it perfect.

You'll notice on the My Story page of my site that I list balance as one of my core standards. I take this one very seriously, and I'm no stranger to the struggle of work vs. life. Some days I find myself so engrossed by work that I fight to tear myself away for things like quitting time, lunch, or even a break to stretch and let out the pup. But quality time with my loved ones is essential to me, and I know how the business inevitably suffers when I don't take time for myself. So unplug I must.

It can be tough to clock out when the emails are piling up and you can't seem to make time for enough quality social posts amidst your real work (or vice versa). How can you balance your work and life well in today's “always on” world? I know this challenge all too well, but thankfully I've found some tools I've integrated into my work life that make the balance a whole lot easier. Here's hoping they'll do the same for you!

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Harnessing Instagram for Your Brand: Part 3

We've made it to the final part of the Instagram series—yay us!! I started this whole thing off by covering why to separate personal and professional content and how multiple Instagram accounts can help. Then we went deep on the idea of curating what you share and why it makes such a profound difference for your brand.

QUALITY & CONSISTENCY ARE EVERYTHING

The more you share targeted content on a platform like Instagram, the more magic it will work for your business. Today's post is all about streamlining how you share so you can post even more killer content without driving yourself nuts. The key is creating standards for quality and consistency, then harnessing systems to support them.

Please note that I'm sharing the apps I use here. There are many other alternatives out there worth exploring. Do some research and play around, but in the meantime these have worked wonders for my brand's Instagram feed. So without further ado, let's dig in!

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My First 2 Months of Owning a Design Business

I cannot believe it's been two months since I officially quit my full-time job to take my brand design business full-time. It's definitely been a whirlwind, filled with personal victories and a lot more adjustments than I was anticipating. Much like my two week check-in, I want to take this time to pause for a bit and look back at my first two months of owning a creative business.

My Two Month Takeaways

So what's new since my last check-in? Where have I struggled? What's been going well? What have I learned? Read on and I'll tell you all about it, dollface.

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Save Time & Sanity With These 6 Systems

Now that you've started your creative business, I'm sure you can't wait to share your magic with the world. The problem is that as a business owner, there are so many other responsibilities that now fall on your shoulders. Let's be honest, at first you'll be wearing all of the hats. As a result, it can be hard to find enough time to devote to the actual work you want your business to be known for.

What can you do to fight back? Save time wherever you possibly can. Hustle smarter—yes this means saying “no” a lot more so you can say “heck yes” to what's truly important. Another way to hustle smarter is to implement systems. There are tons of apps out there that can help your workflow work better. Use these systems to save time and make sure the facets of your business play nice with one another.

Saving on Systems

I know what you're thinking.

Melissa, I don't have the money to invest in fancy apps right now. I'm just getting started!

Believe me, I hear you. Being relatively new to business ownership myself, I've done a ton of research to find the best bang for my buck. What I've found is that many great apps are scalable for your business, meaning you can start using them with very little investment (or even for free!). Once your business and your needs grow, you can scale your subscriptions up too.

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My First 2 Weeks of Owning a Design Business

Remember a couple years ago when brightly colored pants were coming back into style? I sure do. I'd see a girl walking down the street rocking those fuchsia skinnies and think, “Dang, I wish I could pull those off.” Even if fluorescent pants or bright red lipstick weren't your thing (yep, I've been there too), we've all been in this position.

So many of us waste our lives in the shadows—wallflowers swooning over what someone else is doing. We can't help putting them on a pedestal and thinking, “If only I could pull that off...” If only you could wear those pants or that lipstick. If only you could quit your job, and finally do what you love. If only...

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