How I’m working better and smarter this year

Does everyone start off a new year ready & rarin’ to go? I’m probably not too unusual in that respect. While I don’t make crazy resolutions or run myself ragged trying to accomplish all my dreams in the first two weeks of January, I do try to set some goals, re-think how I work, and brainstorm ways I can work smarter and focus on what I want to do and accomplish. With that in mind I have a few recommendations for those of you who might find yourself in the same new year new energy boat. 

  • I always do one of those “brain dump”/mind map things when I’m planning out a new year. I do believe that writing things down helps me narrow my focus and leads me to accomplish more of my goals. This year I’ve also been using the Your Best Year 2018 book by Lisa Jacobs. It’s been a really helpful tool to be even more intentional about how I spend my time and what I accomplish. Hopefully it will help me stay on track when the shine of January is far behind me. 
  • I’m determined that 2018 is the year I finally get a handle on my business finances and accounting. I’m not going to lie, I HATE this part of business, but I’m finally ready to embrace it and I know my business will benefit from it. I’m using the resources and wisdom of Melissa Whaley, a tax advisor and financial strategist especially for creative women entrepreneurs. I’m learning TONS.
  • I also finally did a one-on-one consultation with Jennifer Nelson, the founder and artist agent behind Jennifer Nelson Artists. Jennifer is so incredibly generous with her advice and support that I’ve been thinking about doing a one-on-one with her for awhile. It really helped me know what I don’t need to worry about and how to move forward in the best way. It was awesome and I think it’s really important for those of us out here chugging away on our own to have someone we can check in with, whether that be a paid consultation or having a good support group (ideally, a little of both!)
  • I‘m also taking charge of some of the technical issues involved in my business. My computer is getting a badly needed upgrade that will (hopefully) drastically improve my workflow. And I’m also using some new tools to help with my work. I just took a Skillshare class by Elizabeth Silver called “Optimize Your Design Workflow: Adobe Bridge for Artists.” I don’t currently use Bridge and I know it can help me, so I’m diving into that.

Those are just a few of the things I’ve been using in this new year (one month gone!) to work better and smarter. Of course I’m also making new art! Here’s a little show & tell of some new stuff: