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WordCamp US Plans

I’m planning my trip to WordCamp US and am wondering if anyone is planning the same. I figured I would share my plan incase anyone else is looking to team up or run a similar schedule.

If you’re interested connect with me on the Nashville Slack group.

General Details
My plans
  • Fly out Wednesday for the cheapest flight on Southwest
  • A Wed flight will allow for WC volunteer hangout after work hour for Wed and Thur
  • Potential book an office for Thur – sharedesk: philadelphia market street
  • Book room via AirBnb they have some around $65 a night. I would consider a hotel if the prices are comparable and there was someone to team up with.
General budget
  • $300 = room
  • $440 = flight round trip, if you buy now
  • $200 = food
  • $200 = random
  • $1140 = total

Time Sheets

With out a doubt the most important piece of my daily workflow is keeping time. I feel like most poeple believe it’s important, but most people just don’t get it right and just give up.

The keys

  • Keep it simple to start
  • Don’t get wrapped up in time tracking apps and tools
  • use a spreadsheet to start
  • if you need to crunch numbers use a tracking app as a supplemental tool

A spreadsheet will simplify this whole process and allow you to have the control you might need in at the start. Time tracking is a pain in the ass and while the apps out there have made it easy they all rely on you entering the data or clicking the start and stop buttons.

What I’ve been doing for 2yrs

  • Track my time in a spreadsheet. Use a google sheet, it’s editable everywhere!
  • 5 minute minimum time tracking
  • Grouping related tasks as a single tracked item
  • Always include a link to a client task
  • Every morning I add my times to my harvest account and the respective time tracking software for each client
  • I track everything, client work, personal work, volunteer work and even writing this post.

Why

  • You now have the data you need to get your current hourly value
  • Seeing the daily totals can tell you what your patterns are
  • You can now estimate with informed data
  • Validate your hours if there is ever a discrepancy

A starter template

Below is a google sheet template that includes tabs for starter and advanced uses. The starter version is just for in and out tracking. The advanced include day, week & month sums. This is all manual stuff. Every day you have to add new rows and update related calculations on the sumIf statement. Once you get the hang of it the time is completion is less than 5min

Cutting Boards

About 7 years ago I realized that my computer was sitting on my lap for 4-6hrs a day. I could feel the heat digging into my legs, and it was hot! This was also around that time when mac batteries were exploding. It never happened to me, but it could have.

In a scramble to find something to keep my legs from catching on fire I found a board in my house that fit just right! The board went missing almost immediately so I had to find a good replacement, and that is when I realized that cutting boards are perfect!

All the ways they help

  • Sitting on the couch, bed, counter, grass or just about anywhere you might not want to place your expensive work tool 🙂
  • Stickers! Lots and lots of sticker!
  • Holding your phone, I like to put velcro on the back of my phone case and then I know my phone will stay where I want it too.
  • Small spills on a table will never make it past the wall of the cutting board!
  • Fanning your dog when they are hot.

Coffee Time

Coffee is great, that is if you’re a coffee drinker. I am a coffee drinker and will probably be one until my doctor tells me to stop. Why talk about coffee? Because 90% of people I’ve spoke with, who drink coffee, don’t have any boundaries for it and they inevitably find themselves an oatmeal stupor. ps, I actually do these things 🙂

1) No more than 2 cups per/day! 12oz preferred, 16oz max

What? Yes, that’s right only 2 per/day. “But I drink 4 cups a day”, you’re crazy and your body is pissed at you even if your brain says otherwise. You might need more sleep.

2) A cup of coffee can not be sipped from for more than 1hr

That’s right, you can not nurse a cup of coffee from 7am to 10am only to realize you still haven’t eaten breakfast. Your hangry coffee induced email rate will go down 50%.

3) Have one cup in the morning and one in the afternoon

You have to space it out or you’ll never make it. Don’t drink both cups before 9am, you’ll never make it. Plus now you’ll feel like you’ve earned your afternoon coffee and a mini break.

Edge cases

There are a million edge cases and this isn’t about that one-off coffee. This is about that perfect day at work turning in to a spiraling mess because you’ve consumed your entire stock of espresso. What are edge cases? Kids, puppies, ill-timed 11am meetings, no sleep nights because of stupid pieces of chicken.

Micro movements!

I have this thought at least 20 times a day.

Slow, micro movements are the way to go on this one. It’s going to take you 30min no matter how fast you try to move.

It’s better if you figure out all the tiny movements it will take to complete one larger movement. Rinse and repeat. It’s basic, consistent and reliable.

Some examples

  • Time tracking & time entry
  • Creating tasks for the simple items and giving them actual due dates
  • Writing a log entry for each commit
  • Creating a new password and not recycling!

In short, the idea of micro movements is a method of thinking that help stop the cutting of corners.

Hello world!

Hello world, lets get this started! I’m really excited to work on the grind of posts. There are a handful of easy items work related that I’d love to talk about so here we go. I hope you enjoy!