#FreelanceLife: Week 2 - Send Chocolate and Wine

 804RVA co-working mug!

804RVA co-working mug!

Send Chocolate and Wine

Well, this week was a doozy. I started off super excited about my new week and calendar I created that mapped out certain days to do what work, gave me time for myself and scheduled Friday as an 'off" day from the business.

HAHAHAHA.

I quickly realized that to make money, I would need to work 25-30 hours per week with my freelance writing jobs while spending at least two days developing Chic Stripes - creating blog content, figuring out marketing channels, implementing systems so I could work smarter not harder, booking clients, etc. Suffice it to say, there goes those fantasy Friday off days. I don't really mind though because 1. I need to make money (hello mortgage, food, and my hot yoga membership) and 2. I'm incredibly happy and fulfilled with the work I am doing now that I am freelance. I still want to make sure I am taking at least one day out of the week to not do anything business related (most likely Sundays), but knowing that some weekend work may have to happen. 

So here's how this week went down....

My week:

Monday, April 11 - Had my business mentoring session (love these, highly recommend getting yourself a mentor for anything and everything!). Kinda a weird day because I didn't follow my calendar so I didn't produce any content for the blog and just felt super behind schedule. I did have a great fitting with a client this night - she is outfitted for a few months at least. ;)

Tuesday, April 12 - After a kinda random Monday, I was super excited about implementing an automatic booking and appointment scheduling feature to my website. Spent about three hours getting one set up and paid for when I realized that I couldn't put in coupon codes.... Had to completely scratch that (and loose three hours of work) and start fresh with another service that I found that worked for me. Good news - I got it all up and running within this same day and it looks a lot cleaner than my first one. Still not perfect, but it will do. AND I was able to reduce my payment processing fees to 2.9% (+$10 monthly) instead of the 5% I was paying originally (highway robbery people). Loosing money makes you get creative! This day also included an early AM coffee meeting, a trip to see a new event space in Richmond, pitch practice with our VCU entrepreneur students and then late night blog post writing (so you had a post to read on Wednesday). Also, lots of wine. And random cobbling together of food because I totally forgot to make any food over the weekend and no one wants to cook at 9 PM which is when I ate dinner. 

Wednesday, April 13 - Slept in until I was forced to get up. I did two yoga classes Sunday, a run Monday, and hot yoga Tuesday. My body felt BEAT.  This was my first writing day, and I literally spent ALL day with one of my writing clients, but it felt good to actually be super productive and knock off a lot of my to-do list. I also finally got my email from my friend who wanted me to do freelance writing work with her! Now to respond to that and juggle her with my other 3 clients.... I Andrew and I had a date night - we rode our bike route for our super fun side project and got to spend an hour outside and together. Also, I realized I had no beautifully shot or curated photos for Instagram AND I was actually to busy to post. I need to get on having a stock photo shoot ASAP. Can't let those social media platforms be neglected for too long!

Thursday, April 14 - Early AM meeting with my newest freelance client, work on her projects, finish up writing projects for another client, coffee with a friend and then finally calls and work on my OTHER OTHER freelance client. The VCU Pre-Accelerator student mentorship program I have participating in since January had their final pitch - it was so amazing to see how much ALL of the groups have grown. 

Friday, April 15 - On my calendar for today is one customer meeting for Chic Stripes (over coffee of course), some freelance writing work, meeting up with my client from Monday for some exchanges, and my closing out the week routine (at the end of each week I tally up any expenses, tax deductions I need to track, etc.).  There are a few meetings for our side project scheduled and but I'm feeling really tired and ready to relax once this day is over... 

#FreelanceLife takeaways:

  • Red wine is better than white wine
  • Meal planning and preparing no longer seems crazy, but rather a life saver. Here comes weekend cooking!
  • Flexibility is important - I am a super structured person, so I swear by my calendar, but the freedom to be flexible and then take advantage of those opportunities is amazing.
  • Streamline meetings - I am slowly working on creating a calendar and work flow that prioritizes ME. I scheduled random meetings throughout the week and booked a closet cleanse for a Monday at 10 and realized that while these are good things - I need to be more upfront about having people fit into my schedule and not the other way around.
  • Co-working is fun! I have been working out of 804RVA and it's such a great gathering of smart, talented and dedicated entrepreneurs that it just feels like productivity pours out. And not having to spend all my time in coffee shops is nice. I think I have spent a month's salary on coffee over the past few weeks.

You can read the first installment of #FreelanceLife here.