1 October 2018

Achievements

  • My September has been spent recovering from spinal surgery, so today’s ‘now’ post might look a little sparse!

  • My biggest achievement has been allowing my body time to recover. I’ve rested completely, and am finally seeing the benefits.

  • I have not freaked out about having 4 weeks off work (at the start of a new 1 year secondment) - thankfully my employer has been very supportive.

  • I’ve definitely felt the benefits of having podcasts recorded up until the end of the year during September.

  • While recovering I have managed to listen to LOTS of great books.

  • I’ve also completed some creative online courses and done lots of drawing on my iPad. I feel a new direction for Martine Makes forming.

What Next?

  • I want to continue making art daily.

  • I need to focus on getting my physical strength and fitness back.

  • I am looking forward to returning to work and finding my feet in an exciting, new role.

What Am I Reading?

1 September 2018

Achievements

  • I've had a wonderfully creative summer!

  • The first draft of my book is finished. I am now doing my own edit, then will be sending it to a professional editor. It turned out to be a lot shorter than originally expected, but the content is great so I am happy with that.

  • Health-wise, the past month has been incredibly challenging - not so much in terms of pain, but getting my back operation sorted. It's now going ahead next week. Phew! My achievement is getting through it.

  • I've cycled less this month, but I've still been on my bike at least a few times a week.

  • I have podcasts recorded until the end of December.

  • My hedge veg stall has been very successful.

  • I completed the Seanwes 30 Days to Better Writing Challenge.

  • I also completed the Make it in Design Summer School and really got back in touch with surface pattern design as a result.

  • I introduced a new range of stationery products to my Martine Makes shop.

  • I moved my Martine Makes shop from Squarespace to Shopify and made my first sales.

  • I moved my email list from Converkit to MailChimp and am changing the format of my emails.

Currently Working On

  • Preparing mentally for a month of rest after my operation. There will be knitting, drawing and reading...!

  • Editing my book.

  • Reading ALL THE THINGS in preparation for the new subjects I will be teaching this academic year.

  • Keeping my creative activities going - making art and lettering.

  • Not freaking out about missing the first month of my new job.

What Next?

  • All of the above. I am not planning any more due to recovery time.

What Am I Reading?

1 August 2018

Achievements

  • I have continued cycling and am still really enjoying it.
  • I am now on my summer break and have been doing some serious relaxation.
  • I've been making art as part of the Make it in Design ("MIID") Summer School.
  • I've been writing and recording.
  • I've made yarn (and sold yarn) and started my very own hedge veg stall selling succulents. 

Currently Working On

  • Cycling more.
  • Making art.
  • Writing.
  • Resting.
  • Bulk recording the podcast for next (academic) year.

What Next?

  • Aim for the month - finish my book (waking at 6am and writing daily).
  • Complete the Seanwes 30 Days to Better Writing Challenge.
  • Complete the MIID Summer School projects.

What Am I Reading?

1 July 2018

Achievements

  • Despite having a bad month for pain, I have been to the gym (not daily) and I have also started cycling to work on my new e-bike.
  • My podcast download rate has tripled.
  • I had a guest blog post published by the Society for Education and Training and I have also been interviewed by them about becoming a Google Certified Trainer (coming soon!)
  • I have decided to complete and publish my book over summer break.
  • I got a new job! Next year I will be returning to work full time as CPD Manager and Scholarly Lead. It's a 1-year secondment. I am anxious about returning to work full-time, but it is a big job and doing it on a 50% or 75% basis would not have been sensible. It will present me with many challenges (some have already presented themselves!) but I plan to face them head-on.
  • Due to changes with the Etsy fee structure, I decided to move my online store for Martine Makes to Shopify. I am happy with how the store looks, I just need to boost the profile and start making sales (and more products).
  • I've made some small but significant changes to my home to reduce the amount of waste (particularly plastic) we produce. This fits so well with the ethos of Martine Makes.

Currently Working On

  • Cycling everywhere.
  • Resting when my body tells me I need to.
  • Reducing waste in my home. 

What Next?

  • My aim for The Teaching Space this month is to increase my email list. 
  • And then there's the book!
  • I'll also be planning the year for the podcast and bulk recording a lot.
  • On the home front, I am decluttering.
  • For Martine Makes - it's STOCK and profile raising.

What Am I Reading?

31 May 2018

Achievements

  • I've managed to keep up my weekday morning gym habit and feel better for it.
  • The podcast production process is now running really smoothly and efficiently thanks to my fabulous VA, Tilly.
  • I've invested in some advertising for the podcast and am seeing results.
  • I had a book review published for UKEdChat this month and also appeared on their podcast.
  •  I've decluttered my office and made some positive lifestyle changes to improve my rate of recycling. 
  • I've started using HourStack with Asana and it is increasing my productivity.
  • I'm still journaling. 
  • I've done some writing! But not enough... 

Currently Working On

  • Regular workouts.
  • Getting all podcast episodes recorded in time for my summer break.
  • Writing for education publications. 

What Next?

  • I'm now planning to finish my book over the summer.
  • Also, I am planning some creative activities for the summer. 

What Am I Reading?

4 May 2018

Achievements

  • My biggest achievement this month has been handling my pain levels and adjusting expectations of myself to match.  
  • That said, I have managed to get back to the gym for the first time in ages. Having completed a time study (logging every 15 minutes activity for one week) I worked out that I can survive on less sleep and get up early to go to the gym. I've been going to the gym weekdays at 6.30am and squeezing a swim in at the weekend. I have no doubt that my pain would have been much worse without this.
  • Oh and also, I achieved the age of 40 in April and did not freak out about it too much!
  • Things are working really well with my new VA for The Teaching Space. I have cut the time I spend on podcast creation dramatically. She is worth every penny.
  • I'm keeping up my journaling habit. It's a good start to the day.
  • I'm kept up my podcast schedule and have plans to record in bulk over next week's bank holidays. 
  • I introduced a new product to the Martine Makes shop this month.
  • I set up a shop on The Teaching Space website and got rid of Samcart. 
  • I've been writing! Not daily, but I have written this month and also added some new chapters to the book. I still love this book and am committed to publishing it. I also have some teachers lined up to interview for it. 

Currently Working on

  • Regular workouts.
  • The book!
  • A vision for Martine Makes and The Teaching Space.

What Next?

  • Increase The Teaching Space Podcast listenership. Consider advertising and guest posting. 

What Am I Reading?

2 April 2018

Achievements

  • Last month I took part in a Google Summit in London as a speaker and it went really well. I am optimistic that it will lead to more opportunities. 
  • At the summit, I promoted my podcast and met some great new contacts.
  • I've been journaling regularly using Day One app and finding the practice really helps.
  • I've consistently published a weekly podcast as planned (with the exception of Easter as the podcast is term-time only).
  • I've employed a virtual assistant to help me with The Teaching Space podcast admin. 
  • I've been really creative this month - lots of knitting and making. I have new crafts to explore which will hopefully lead to more products in the Martine Makes shop.
  • I've done some much-needed restructuring work on my book and hope to get back to it this month.
  • My pain levels have been bad this month, but I have managed to adjust my work output expectations and do not feel too anxious about it. This is, indeed, an achievement!
  • Despite increasing pain levels, I managed to walk to work a week ago and enjoyed it. I plan to do more this coming month.

Currently Working On

  • Regular yoga practice and walking to work.
  • Moving my digital products for The Teaching Space from Samcart to Thinkific (didn't manage this last month).
  • Streamlining my social media for both The Teaching Space and Martine Makes (again, did not quite manage this last month, although improvements have been made). This month I plan to ditch Twitter for Martine Makes and Instagram for The Teaching Space. 

What Next?

  • Easter plans:
    • I need to work on The Teaching Space's digital products range. This includes the book. 
    • Marketing... for everything! I'm so bad at this. 
    • Martine Makes - new products.
    • THE BOOK.

What Am I Reading?

28 February 2018

Achievements

  • I will be speaking at a Google Summit in London at the end of next month - my first official speaking gig.
  • I've started journalling using Day One (hurrah for daily writing... even if it is not my book!)
  • I started a book club.
  • My YouTube channel has grown.
  • My engagement on social media has been better this month.
  • I've consistently published a weekly podcast as planned (with the exception of half term as the podcast is term-time only).
  • I got approved as a book reviewer for UKEdChat. 

Areas For Development

  • Expanding The Teaching Space digital product range.
  • Marketing The Teaching Space podcast.
  • Making more yarn for Martine Makes.
  • The book has stalled. I know why. I need to get on with it.

Currently Working On

  • Daily yoga practice.
  • Writing my journal. 
  • Moving my digital products for The Teaching Space from Samcart to Thinkific.
  • Streamlining my social media for both The Teaching Space and Martine Makes.
  • Reconciling my accounts.
  • Writing an article about marking for InTuition magazine. 

What Next?

  • I need to work on The Teaching Space's digital products range.
  • Marketing... for everything! I'm so bad at this. 
  • My GSuite for Business course (Easter project).

What Am I Reading?