The official blog of author Jean Marie Bauhaus

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New Directions

No, I don’t mean the glee club.

My new day job and I parted ways on Friday. Suffice to say that it just wasn’t a good fit. What it comes down to is that I should have known better than to accept a job at a salary that was far less than what I needed to support my family on the assumption that I could just keep on freelancing on nights and weekends, no problem, because, HUGE PROBLEM! As it turns out, I totally do not have the stamina to work two jobs. I was exhausted and miserable, and my husband was miserable from hardly ever seeing me, and I was starting to get sick, and I wasn’t making any progress on my book, and when I asked why I was doing this to myself, neither of us could come up with a good answer. So we sat back down and did the math and weighed the pros and cons, and decided that we’d be better off if I returned to freelancing full-time and putting the focus back on our business.

Of course, we have some trepidation. A steady paycheck, even one that’s too small, provides a measure of reassurance that you don’t get with freelancing. But I’m optimistic. I’ve got a new business plan in place, which is not something I’ve had before; up until now I’ve been making it up as I go. That new plan includes a new marketing/promotion/finding clients plan, and it also includes a whole new slate of self-publishing-related services, including coaching and consulting for new and wannabe indie authors who need to be shown the ropes or require hand-holding. I’m still working out the details, but I’m ready to start lining up clients, so if you are or know anyone who might be interested in that, feel free to drop me a line here or private message me on Facebook.

The day job itself wasn’t a total loss, and I don’t regret the experience. It taught me a lot — not only about WordPress development, but also about myself. I know now that I’m really not cut out for the type of job where you only do one thing all day long, no matter how much I like doing that thing in smaller doses. As much as I get weary of having too many irons in the fire, I do tend to thrive in the sort of job that requires me to wear a lot of different hats. Also, my wiring is just not compatible with a rigid, 8 to 5 work schedule. I knew that already, but I guess I needed the reminder. At any rate, the last six weeks have provided the kick in the pants I needed to shake me out of my rut and motivate me to make my business work. And I’m more motivated now than I’ve ever been, willing to step as far outside of my comfort zone as I need to in order to keep this going. Also, I finally have a vision for my business, for what I want it to become in the next five years, with measurable goals along the way.

I’m more excited than I’ve been in a very long time, and I’m ready to get to work.

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A Spark of Hope, Extinguished

Goal Post & Update

Wow, y’all. Work has been busy. I didn’t blog last week because there just wasn’t time. This is excellent news for our ability to pay our bills, although this pace is already threatening to burn me out. I haven’t been able to touch my novel, either, and any time off I’ve managed to grab has been spent trying to cram in all of the stuff that has to be done that I don’t get paid to do. I am, in a word, tired.

So now that I’ve got the productivity goal conquered, my goal for this and the upcoming weeks is to work on finding balance and pacing myself. I need to manage that extra eight hours better and give myself a little more time to do things I WANT to do and not just what has to get done. That way, hopefully, lies sanity, and avoidance of that mental energy wall I keep running into by Thursday afternoon.

To that end: it’s after 9 PM on Monday night, and instead of working till 11 like I have been, I’m going to go put my feet up and find something to watch on Netflix, and then I shall read until I get sleepy, and it shall be bliss.

What are YOU doing to stop the insanity, my fellow goalies?

ETA: I can’t believe I almost forgot! One of the projects that’s been keeping my nose so hard-pressed against the grindstone is finished (mostly — I still have to redo the blog template and revise the video on the home page) and officially launched last night. Check out my handiwork for FutureWave Consulting.

Now if I can just find time to update my portfolio (without burning out my brain)…

Goal Post: Week 5

Well, despite being crazy-busy all week, I didn’t finish anything, but that’s mostly because of waiting for other people to get back to me before I can continue. I did come within only $40 of my weekly quota, which I don’t believe will be too hard to make up. The main thing is that I’m getting more billable work done in the allotted time, and if I can get through a week without any major schedule interruptions, I should get all of my work in just fine.

Goal Post: Week 4

[Cross-posted]

I didn’t even have time for a goal update this week, and by the weekend I was too brain-fried to bother. The good news is that for the first time ever last week I earned too much to qualify for an unemployment check — which is really excellent timing, since my unemployment year expires at the end of this month. I didn’t make my “Need to make $X to make ends meet” quota, but I would have if I hadn’t spent most of Monday on unpaid hours trying to fix that broken WordPress blog.

Goal Post: Week 3

I’m running behind this week, thanks to an entire day lost to trying to figure out a problem in WordPress and making no progress.

State of the Goals – Week 2

[X-posted]

It only took two and a half days for the combination of the cats and my uncomfortable office chair to drive me back out to the living room couch. I’m not giving up on the office yet. I think sharing my office with the cats (it’s where we keep the litter boxes, so shutting the girls out for more than an hour at a time isn’t really an option; and no, we can’t figure out a better place to keep them) would probably be more tolerable if I had a chair that didn’t give me a backache after only an hour of sitting in it. So “new office chair” is moving to the top of the list of things to buy when we have some cash to burn.

Goal Post: Week 2

[X-posted to Daydream Believer]

Today I’m drinking coffee for the first time in about six weeks, and savoring every drop. I’m also working in my office for the first time in about as long, on the theory that I’ll be more focused and productive in here than I tend to be when sitting on the couch. We shall see. Either way, the cats keep jumping up and getting in my face, apparently wanting to make out–either that or trying to tell me to get out of their chair. In here, if I don’t comply either way, they start knocking crap off of my window sill, trying to kill either me or my computer; whereas on the sofa they would just give up and go away. So the jury’s still out whether the office will be more distraction-free.

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