This week…

One thing I’m going to try to do (we’ll see how long it lasts) is to post a weekly update about how my week has been work-wise. This is really more for myself than anyone else so I apologize if it’s boring and promise to try post more useful things the rest of the week.

For some context, some quick notes about my situation:

  • I’m a freelancer, but most of my time is contracted to PixelMill. It’s not too much different from when I was actually employed there, except that I get paid a lot more, pay a lot more taxes, and work at home. I end up working about 30-35 hours/week, more or less, on PixelMill-related stuff.
  • I have a handful of site-maintenance relationships where I get paid to maintain their site, and another handful of volunteer site-maintenance, mostly for religious organizations or family members. All together, this probably averages out to 3-4 hours a week.
  • I currently have three active projects apart from the above; one is nearly completed, one is a new project where the client is still gathering info so I won’t start until 4/2, and one is another new project that I have to jump into rather quickly. Most of this happens during the last few hours of the day, weekends, or nights when Steve is working.
  • One of my goals for 2007 is to work on personal brand development and maybe start another [small] side business, but thinking about these only seems to happen on weekends…

Okay, now for my week update/analysis:

  • I feel behind. Most of my PixelMill time got sucked into a big project designing web photo gallery templates for an Important Customer. They took longer than I thought they would and the other PixelMill-related stuff fell to the wayside. I have a long list of overdue milestones screaming at me in Basecamp. (I use Basecamp for normal project milestones with clients, but then use milestones as a sort of daily “to do” list for PixelMill projects.)
  • I have a lot of new opportunities. My brother-in-law called me up to do some hourly work for a fast-track web site revamp, so I’m going to work on that sometime this weekend. I finalized a proposal with a new client and am looking forward to starting that project. Starting this blog has helped me to already connect with some Very Cool People and there may be some projects on the horizon. I’ve tentatively started using Twitter (and Twitteroo) and maybe that will be another way to build a professional community for myself.
  • I’ve been a little unfocused. The new blog is very fun, so it’s also a little distracting from other work. I think the list of undone to-do’s makes me a little scatterbrained as well. I spilled water on my desk twice today; the second time was all over my phone and I think it might be broken!
  • I’ve learned new things. This always makes me happy. I learned about new stuff in Illustrator while I was making the calendar layout and I learned about using WordPress. I also had an official go at making a “grunge texture” graphic for one of the photo gallery templates.
  • I was able to balance some social interaction with work. I took an hour off in the middle of the day yesterday to go walking with a friend, then took an extra-long lunch today to hang out with Steve and good friends of ours. (Plus, there are the new connections I’m making through twitter and this blog.)
  • Overall — I’m pleased with my week. It’s not over yet, so I’m hoping to buckle down and get a lot done over the next few hours.

Looking forward:

  • I need to be okay with not getting everything off my to-do list. I think I picked the right priorities to focus on, so even though I’m “behind,” I’m satisifed that I did the best I could with what I had.
  • I’ll have to schedule my task list for next week to provide enough time for this photo gallery job, which will last two more weeks, as well as my brother-in-law’s urgent web revamp project.
  • I’m going to try to be less concerned with blog stats. It can be pretty addicting, but I’ll try to keep myself to a once-a-day look.

Okay, back to work. Have a great weekend!

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