Hey photographers! Today I’m blogging about 5 Tools I Use to keep me on Track all year long! I previously blogged about 3 priceless apps, which is a valuable post too, but this time I want to go a bit broader on tools I use to track and manage my entire life as I go about the year. I’m tackling managing my daily tasking, fitness, Instagram marketing, finances, and client management–so yeah, really giving you the whole picture today! 🙂 I hope you find these resources valuable as you go about planning for your year, and I’d love to hear in the comments which ones you also use+which ones excited you to try!
5 Tools I use to keep me on track all year
#1 – Simplified Planner
I’ve blogged about this one before, yes, but it’s an important mention because this is a basically my foundation tool to keep me on track every month, week, and day of the year. I reference my Simplified Planner almost daily (the weekend may be an exception). I use it to plan out my important overall intentions/goals for the month in the margin on the month’s view, and then create a to-do list every day (both work and personal things) to make sure everything is written down and in one place. I definitely use my digital calendar (ical) to manage schedules and appointments (how Andy and I stay on the same page with all of our moving parts between us and the kids), but I personally love paper for to-do’s. I also love that at the end of the day, I can close it and shut down for the day. This planner is one of my favorite tools to keep me tracking all year, plus, every year Emily comes out with new cover styles and they’re always so pretty! 🙂 If you don’t have a 2019 planner yet, you’re also in luck because with the start of the New Year her 2019 planners are 20% off (I never wait this long though FYI, because they often sell out fast! I always buy in November to make sure I get the cover I want).
#2 – Fitness Resources
This one might be a little unexpected, but exercise is an important part of my self-care. I use two resources:
A. I have a Lifetime Fitness membership which is a crucial part of getting the support I need during the year to both exercise, and also have an additional childcare resource when needed (lifetime gives you 2.5 hours of childcare a day and I’ve absolutely used this before when unexpected work comes up on days I don’t normally have childcare. Also, I just really love their fitness classes. They keep me challenged and having fun with my exercise all year (my favorites are Barbell, Gluteus Maxout, Shred, and their restorative yoga class!).
B. Active by Popsugar App (it’s free!)
This app has been such a vital resource for me since becoming a mom. It’s a completely free app, and you can apply a filter to filter the type of workout you’re looking for. I’m using this typically when I have a day I just can’t make the 90 minute+ time it takes to get to the gym and get a decent workout in. I typically apply it for a 15 minute workout and get it in–anyone can find just 15 minutes, right?! And I promise you’ll get a good burn with their workouts :).
#3 – Planoly
Planoly is what I use to create and schedule my instagram content every week. I sit down Mondays and plan+schedule my posts for the entire week, which takes probably 20-40 minutes depending on how in-depth my content is for the week. It has an automatic posting feature, but most of my photos don’t fir the crop ratio specs needed so I just post manually (it sends a push notification to your phone and then it’s just a few clicks–copy and paste–to get your image and caption in there). Planoly has been an invaluable tool to keep my most important marketing tool (instagram!) on track all year.
#4 – Profit First
Profit First is a book written by Mike Machalowicz and it is the financial system I use all year to manage my finances. I’ve read Dave Ramsey (Total Money Makeover) and have been considering reading it again this year to see if it may be more helpful after implementing Profit First strategies, but it was so hard for me to take anything away from DR initially because I didn’t have the tools to know how to manage a varying income, first. Profit First gave me a system to understand my business income and to know how to pay myself a consistent, monthly salary. Highly recommend reading the book and then setting up his process for yourself!!
#5 – Honeybook
Honeybook is what I use for client management and it has been an invaluable tool. I handle all client communication, invoicing, and even initial inquiries directly through Honeybook. I love having something that keeps everything in one place, and even has the power of automation for collecting payments and information for my clients. I’m not a super tech-y person, and I’ve tried other platforms, and Honeybook was the perfect fit for me for both ease of use as well as the incredible support they give in their onboarding process. If you don’t yet have a client management system, get one! It will save you so. much. time and stress! You can use this link to start a free trial and get 50% off if you decide to sign-up. If you sign-up, I will personally message you and ask you if there’s anything I can help you with as you’re setting up, and I mean it!
Have any questions about any of the tools I mentioned? Feel free to leave a comment and I’ll reply! 🙂