This month has been a busy one on the goal front. I spent more time working on my blog website than expected in March, but the work is more or less completed on time and I learned more than I expected. Here are my March accomplishments towards my 2016 goals.
I established five goals for myself:
- Get back in Shape
- Expand Thomas Woodcrafts
- Continue Growing DadGoesRound
- More Family Time
- Smile More
Get Back in Shape
I spent very little time at the gym and have not been tracking my food intake. It may seem that I have fallen off the health wagon. In actual fact I have had to change course somewhat. I have long had chronic back pain, sometimes it is a general ache and sometimes and acute pain. Since I started back at the gym I have had a number of acute pain episodes and one of them finally drove me to the doctor to see what I could do about it since the core exercises I was doing at the gym were not resolving the issue. The doctor sent me for physiotherapy and I have been going for physio very regularly this month and my therapist has been alternately torturing me and teaching me exercises and stretches to get at the root of my issue which is a few bulging discs in my lower back. It is helping, more than the gym. I haven’t weighed myself in a few weeks. The last time I did I was down 12 lbs. from the start of the year and gauging by how my clothes are fitting I think I have dropped some additional pounds since then.
As for the gym, I am quitting the gym. I am going to take up Aikido with my seven year old. We signed her up in January and I had the intent of also joining and I just needed to figure out whether I would also do the gym or just Aikido. Truth be told I would prefer to continue going to the gym in the morning and then do Aikido twice a week. I can’t afford to do that so instead I am dropping the gym. I am going to continue getting up in the morning to do exercise. Instead of the gym I will be doing the targeted exercises shown to me by the physiotherapist so I can continue to work on resolving and ultimately preventing my back issues.
I did four years of martial arts training as a teen and I am looking forward to returning to a similar art and shaking the rust off 20+ year old muscle memory. I am looking forward to taking this journey with my daughter.
Expand Thomas Woodcrafts
I continued to make new products.
And took all new photos of the products that I have in stock.
I have struggled to keep up posting new content from other sources on my Facebook page. I did succeed in increasing the number of followers by 30% from the start of the month so I am now over 100 followers. Please feel free to like my page and invite your friends.
I have found a good rhythm on daily Instagram posts with a mix of products and wood/creativity/play quotes. I think that effort is driving some traffic to my Etsy shop. It is hard to be sure. When I rebuild my website I think I am going to create a landing page for people coming from Instagram so that I can better track my efforts. I have made some minor website tweaks and done some backend maintenance in advance of rebuilding the site in the next couple of months.
It turns out that Etsy is also updating their site and our respective shop formats so I also updated my Etsy shop in advance of the launch of the new store fronts in early April. I also booked my first craft show of 2016 and will be exhibiting in Ottawa as part of the Heart, Home and Handmade show May 15th.
Grow DadGoesRound Blog
If you have been to my site before you will notice that it now looks completely different. I took some time off writing so I could focus on building a new site and doing some planning for my site. I still have work to do on the design and I expect the majority of that work will be done by mid-April. I didn’t expect to become a WordPress developer in order to put my site together, but I am learning coding and have to edit the site in order to get it set up how I want it. I discovered I had to do quite a bit of backend work on the site before I could even start the process of building new. It turns out I missed a few things when I transferred the site from a previous host last year. Now things are working better! I would be interested in your feedback and suggestions on my new site as I further refine it and make better use of the space.
I have made a little more use of Instagram and will step that up – I like this platform a lot. I am doing my learning and experimenting over on Thomas Woodcrafts and will start to apply those lessons to my DadGoesRound account. I have continued to curate content on my Facebook page and started adding more of my older content into the mix. This is going well and driving some traffic to my site.
Last year I attended the BConnected conference in Ottawa and I decided it was a good investment to go again this year. I learned a lot and made some good connections there last year. So I will be attending the 2016 conference in late April.
This month I proactively reached out to companies and PR firms to start pitching partnerships and campaign ideas. No paying gigs yet, however my family and I did have a Ford Edge to test drive for a week and the story of that adventure will be coming to this blog in a couple of days.'This one step - choosing a goal and sticking to it - changes everything' - Scott ReedClick To Tweet
More Family Time
This continues to be a struggle and is going to get more challenging in the coming months as my partner starts doing more paid work, which tends to be on weekends and evenings. That will result in more Daddy-Daughters time, but less all together time. It is a necessary step and we will sort it out. It means that I think this goal is going to be more about quality instead of pure quantity. I will get more of that time with our seven year old as we throw each other around at the Aikido dojo! The girls and I will generally have more focused time together which will be good too. It will force me to pay a little less attention to the computer and more to the breathing little people in my house.
In April I’ll be finishing up the remaining pieces of design work on my blog site, starting to stockpile products in advance of the May craft show, pitching more brands, attending the B Connected Conference, which will result in a whole bunch of homework for May and beyond and we’ll be adjusting to new demands on our family time. That should keep me out of trouble and off the streets for a bit.