Posted in Personal Skills, Time Management

3 Simple Tips To Improve Productivity

I am constantly looking for ways to improve my productivity in an efficient manner that honors the self care I’ve committed to myself. I’m on a journey of professional and personal growth and I want to share 3 tips that have helped me become more productive (when I follow them).

Now, one book that I read this past year that truly helped me to understand how habits work and why I should start small is from James Clear’s Atomic Habits. It also made me realize why I stopped running long distances after completing my half marathon. I had a large goal that I reached, but ultimately, I didn’t keep it up because I didn’t have another goal to work towards lined up afterwards. If you haven’t read this book yet, do it, because the advice seems so simple, yet powerful at the same time. It’s really about starting with small manageable steps toward larger goals.

Create a Morning Routine

Another book that I read recently is the Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod. While I don’t do everything on his list, I try to implement the practice of being intentional when I start my day. I’ve especially been work on trying to stop snoozing my alarm clock in the morning so I can wake up a bit more refreshed.

In the book, Elrod talks about using the SAVERS method which stands for: silence, affirmations, visualization, exercise, reading, and scribing. I’ve kind of merged Atomic Habits together with this, so I don’t do the exact lengths of time he recommends. I try to get up, make my bed, stretch, make coffee, and sit to write down my daily affirmations. After that, I go over my to-do list for the day and prioritize what needs to be done first.

Time Batch Similar Tasks

One method to improve productivity is to batch like tasks together in a single time block. For example, I might set aside 7:00am – 9:00am to complete household chores or do laundry. I also recommend only checking email at set times throughout the day. When it is easily accessible on our phones or in our Internet browser tabs, we are more likely to run to do whatever comes across instead of staying focused on the thing that was in front of us in the first place.

Another strategy is to use the Pomodoro technique to work in 25 minute increments with a 5 minute break. Spend 2 hours of your time block utilizing this technique to tackle a big project or report for work or your home life. I spent several months organizing my day using the time blocking method to make sure that I was able to get to everything on my list.

Narrow Your Daily Focus

I used to create these big long to do lists because I thought it made me more productive to have long lists. What I realized was that if I didn’t get to everything on my list, I would get mad at myself for not being as productive as I could have been. When I start my morning routine, I now focus what my priorities will be for the day. I use a variety of different types of to do lists, but I try not to overload or overwhelm myself with listing everything that needs to be done.

I can be proud at the end of the day if I manage to check off the majority of things I wanted to get done.

So what can you do if you’re trying to be more productive?

  1. Get a morning routine
  2. Batch similar tasks in the same time block
  3. Narrow your daily focus

Remember it’s okay if you have off days because that’s life. Best of luck on your productivity journey!

Note: Post contains affiliate links, for which I would earn a small commission if purchases are made at no extra cost to you!

Posted in Goal, Inspiration and Motivation, Manifestation, Personal Skills

5 Inspirational Quotes I Live By

I love anything inspirational or motivational and my friends and family know it. When I taught K-12 students I used to have quotes all over my classroom. My favorite candy is Dove chocolates because of the sayings on the wrappers. Of course, I do like chocolate as well, but the quotes are what keep me coming back to Dove. I get lots of gifts like inspirational calendars or cards that I can reference or hang up in my work space.

In this post I want to share my top 5 favorite inspirational quotes and how I interpret them for my life.

“If you’re always trying to be normal, you’ll never know how amazing you can be.” – Maya Angelou

I love this quote because it reminds me that I don’t have to be like anyone else in this world. Also, normal is an abstract thing because what is normal anyway? It also encourages me to take risks. If I just stayed complacent with where I am, I may never discover that next new amazing thing that brings me happiness.

The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.


Now this is a quote I often use in my courses when I teach goal-setting strategies. It kind of relates back to the first quote I mentioned here. As the first person in my family to graduate college, I saw an opportunity to keep going and now I have a terminal degree. I set my goal for the highest education possible and while it was challenging and time consuming, I did it. And if I hadn’t set the goal, I may never have known how much I was capable of.

Leadership is about empathy. It is about having the ability to relate to and connect with people for the purpose of inspiring and empowering their lives.” – Oprah Winfrey

As an aspiring leader who hopes to make a positive impact in this world, this quote really stands out to me. I’ve really tried to become a person who displays empathy and encourages others to build this quality. I think I’ve gotten better at it as I’ve gotten older and experienced lots of different life circumstances. I may not fully be able to understand someone’s unique situation, but I can provide grace and space as much as possible.

“When one door of happiness closes, another opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened for us.”

Helen Keller

I love this quote because it’s a reminder that opportunities are always in front of us and we have to let go of the past in order to embrace the possibilities of the future. It’s easy to dwell on negativity or rejections because it’s not great to feel those emotions. And it’s okay to feel them and recognize it, but I cannot let it bring down so much that I miss out on something even more amazing right behind that new door.

“Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That is why it is called the present.” — Alice Morse Earle

The quote above keeps me grounded in the reality that every day and every moment we have with one another is precious and we shouldn’t take it for granted. As someone who relives past mistakes and creates future problems, it’s also a quote that speaks to fact that I should focus on the here and now. I can’t change the past and I don’t know what the future holds, but I know that today I can be kinder, work hard, and appreciate the many blessings that I do have.

Please leave a comment if you’d like me to do any more blog posts on quotes I enjoy!

Posted in Blogging

My Method For Writing Blog Posts

Since I just started working on my blog a few months ago, I’m still finding my groove in how to develop posts. I’ve done some research on how to write posts and what length to target. A lot of things I read actually have quite lengthy blog posts as the ideal, but I’ve been focusing on shorter posts that get right to the point. I suppose I’ll have to invest in some longer ones and compare how they do.

Now at first I didn’t know what I was doing (and probably still don’t know nearly enough), but I’m starting to develop some strategies for content development and ideas. My initial plan was to keep a list of running ideas in a Google Sheet and then add to them as I came up with fresh ideas. I was planning to create a whole monthly calendar, set aside a couple of days to write everything, and then schedule the posts to run. As an organized person, I still think of that method as my ultimate content creation goal. However, as a busy person with a brain constantly filled with tasks and new knowledge, I discovered another way to write content for blog posts.

What do I do now?

Well, I found that adding headings and bullet points to my posts seems to help them track better in views. Even though I’m focusing on shorter content for now, I noticed that longer posts have more space for advertisements, which in turn would equal more revenue if I made the effort to create longer content. That could be financially beneficial down the line.

The method I use now is not fancy, but it’s working, so I’ll continue to use it until I’ve got a better routine. I often listen to podcasts, read news articles, and follow lots of productivity gurus.

Just like how Marie Kondo tells us to keep items that spark joy, I keep tidbits of information that spark curiosity.

As new ideas or innovations come to me, I add them to my draft posts right away. And if I don’t have access to my WordPress site at the moment, then I text or email myself the idea so I can put it there later. In my current draft post folder I have 17 different posts that I have started. As I learn more, I continue to add to that post until it’s ready to go out into the world. Sometimes when I have designated time on my calendar to work on blog posts, I’ll pick the idea that sticks out to me the most and I’ll work on adding information to flesh it out.

In my research, I read that it takes about 8 months for blog posts to reach their highest viewer audience and after a year, I should track the posts to see which ones are most popular. Right now, I periodically review the post insights to see which topics are trending or have more likes. For example, my original short post on time management tips actually has the most likes out of everything I’ve written. It’s simple, but shows me that there is more room to add time management content with more blog posts. Interestingly, super specific time management strategies, such as using the Eisenhower Matrix, doesn’t seem to be as popular as just a short list of ways to make a to-do list.

I’m sure my methods will evolve as I continue to grow in knowledge on how to create useful content and share it with others.

Be on the lookout for more posts because I’ve got at least 17 more ideas on the back burner!

Posted in Personal Skills, Time Management

3 Ways to Respectfully Say “No” to New Projects or Commitments When You Want to Say Yes

Do you feel guilty saying no when someone asks you to do something at work or a favor from a friend? Do you say yes even when you don’t want to so you won’t let someone down? It’s easy to say yes because you feel like you have to, but true reflection is necessary to decide which things are worth saying yes to. And sometimes you may think you’re saying no to something, but your message comes across as ambivalent and you feel it’s too late to back out at that point.

I was just having a conversation today with a friend who thought she said no to something, but still got an excited email about continuing to be part of a project. I had her read me the initial message she sent and let her know that it indeed did not come across as a no as she intended. She ran her response by me to check that it was clear and the new tone of the message was still friendly and encouraging, yet set a clear boundary on participation in the project.

Now, this blog post will focus on generic ways to respectfully say no, but I’m happy to write new posts catering to both professional and personal life boundaries. Before saying flat out “no” to an opportunity, gathering, meeting, or project, it is okay to ask clarifying questions. For example, about 6 months ago I was asked to take on a 4-5 month consulting project. It would have been an awesome learning opportunity for me, but I already had 2 part time commitments and was completing my final semester of grad school. Part of my response included:

I feel confident in my abilities to meet the requirements of the position, but I want to make sure I have a clear understanding of the expectations and relative time commitment.

After the response became clear that this would be a 20-30 hour per week commitment, I knew that I could not add that to my workload. I really wanted to say yes and do it, but I also wanted to make sure that I could carry out the responsibilities to the level of competence I wish to display. And this comes from previous experiences where I did overload myself and not perform to the best of my abilities.

Discerning when and how to say yes and no to opportunities is a lifelong practice of finding balance in your life. There is not necessarily a one size fits all method to this. I was listening in to a conversation on Clubhouse last night and someone said that it’s easier to start with no and change to yes later than to say yes to everything and have to eventually say no. Here are 4 ways to respectfully say “No” and manage your time effectively.

  1. Ask them to check in at a later time

This strategy works if the ask is something you’re possibly interested in saying yes to, but just don’t have the time at the moment to commit or to learn more about it. Your schedule is packed and you just can’t imagine taking on one new thing. Say you are not available at this time, but they can check back in with you in XX number of weeks or months. And if the person follows up and it comes back around and you still cannot commit, clearly state that unfortunately, you will not be able to take on this project or endeavor. Here is a sample of what I would say:

Thank you so much for reaching out to me about this opportunity. I am interested in this possible partnership, but unfortunately cannot commit at this time. Will you check back with me in 3 months if you are still interested in collaborating?

2.Express support in other ways

Now, this is the response that my friend used to make her no clear to the people in the email thread. She was truly excited about the project idea, which was expressed in the initial communications. However, she didn’t want to be one of the main people involved in the idea creation and the day to day of the project. So she sent a nice message back stating she was fully cheering them on in this opportunity, but could not take an active role. However, she left room for them to check back in if they had a specific task related to her area of expertise. Therefore, she was not committed in any way, but could offer support on very specific items if time permits later and there is a need.

3. Suggest an alternative

This is a great comprise “no” answer. Perhaps you don’t have the time or capacity to take something on, but you know someone who is. Check with that other person and then make the recommendation or connection. Personally, I like to check in with my contact before sending the other person to them that way I know if they are truly interested in the opportunity. It also creates a more positive interaction for everyone involved.

Maybe you want to say yes, but you can’t commit to 2 hour weekly check-in meetings. Clearly define your boundaries and say that you would be available to meet every other week or once a month. It is much better to set those boundaries up front from an overly cautious time commitment and then later decide to become move involved if you are able to do so.

In order to properly provide an alternative to whatever the ask is, it’s important to continue to build up your social and professional network. Take advantage of opportunities to meet with others in your field and areas of expertise.

At the end of the day, if something is a definite no for you, make that clear in your response and wish the person well. You don’t necessarily owe an explanation and this is something I’m working on. I feel the need to justify my time by saying “oh, I already have this commitment and this commitment”, but the reality is simply saying no so you have time to take a break and protect your mental health is just as important.

Posted in Work From Home

The Importance of Eye Health When Working From Home

*Post contains affiliate links

After working on the computer and being on video calls throughout the day, do your eyes feel more fatigued than ever? I know I am often more tired than I used to be when I could actually have face to face conversations with people. And it doesn’t seem to just be me. My friends and coworkers are all saying the same thing.

In a study conducted during the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, researchers sent a questionnaire to over 1000 participants about their computer use and eye strain (Ganne et al., 2020). They found that digital eye strain was highest among students taking online classes, followed by teachers teaching online. Additionally, eye strain was highest among those who were younger, had increased screen time, and poor habits of not taking breaks (Ganne et al., 2020).

Those of us working from home need to come up with strategies to give our eyes a break. It’s just as important as stretching or standing to combat back and neck problems from sitting for long periods of time. Here are some of the things that I use to help keep my eyes as refreshed as possible in the digital world of work.

Strategies to combat eye fatigue:

  1. 20/20/20 rule

Originally suggested by Dr. Jeffrey Anshel, the 20-20-20 rule was developed as a way to reduce digital eye strain as computers began the rise in popularity for work and home. With the onset of the pandemic, this rule gained new momentum as a recommendation for anyone staring at their computer screens for long periods of time. Essentially, the rule states that you should look away from your screen every 20 minutes for 20 seconds at something that is 20 feet away. Well, I don’t work in a 20 foot long office, so I try to look out the window to get my distance in. I use Alexa as my timer to help make sure I remember to follow this rule.

Additionally, it’s important to make sure that the computer screen is eye level so you’re not craning your neck and that the brightness is set to a comfortable level.

2. Blue light blocking glasses

I have heard the recommendation to not look at screens anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours before sleeping because it can disrupt the sleep patterns. However, the research is mixed on whether blue light actually contributes to digital eye strain. Personally, I have found fewer headaches and fatigue when I do wear my blue light blocking glasses. If you already wear glasses, it can now be added in to your lenses in many eye doctor’s offices.

3. Take breaks

Simply stepping away is a great strategy to give your eyes a break from the screen. In addition to the 20-20-20, make sure to step away from the screen multiple times throughout the day for extended periods of time. It’s easy to wake up and immediately grab our cell phones because they are right next to us. In order to remove the temptation of using my phone first thing in the day, I bought an actual alarm clock that I use. I try to be intentional about taking a lunch break where I’m outside away from technology whenever I can.

Other strategies to help combat eye fatigue include making sure the computer is at the right height and using a laptop stand if needed, making sure you have proper lighting in the room you are working in, and changing the brightness or glare on the display you are working on.

Whatever you do, practice being mindful of how you are feeling and take steps to care of yourself!


Ganne, P., Najeeb, S., Chaitanya, G., Sharma, A., & Krishnappa, N. C. (2020). Digital Eye Strain Epidemic amid COVID-19 Pandemic–A Cross-sectional Survey. Ophthalmic epidemiology, 1-8.

Posted in Goal, Lifestyle, Manifestation, Personal Skills

Limiting Beliefs: Strategies I’m Using to Overcome Them and Create the Life I Want

I feel like the universe is trying to tell me something. Lately, everywhere I turn I hear someone mentioning limiting beliefs, including my therapist. So I took that as an opportunity to do a deep dive into what that is and give myself some strategies to overcome them.

So first of all, what the heck are limiting beliefs and how do I know I have them? I had to break it down for myself to truly understand what I was dealing with. First I looked up the definitions for belief and limiting at

So putting it all together, I realized that these limiting beliefs were confining opinions or convictions about certain aspects of my life. The thoughts such as “I’m not smart enough to deserve this degree” or “I can never have as much money as that person” or “This business idea isn’t going to work out even if I try hard so I might as well give up.” I could go on and on and I bet if you think about it, there is at least one aspect of your life where this may be the case. Perhaps the limiting beliefs are not so obvious to you anymore because these are things you’ve been telling yourself for so long that you truly believe them to be true.

What I’m learning is that we can make conscious choices to change our thought patterns and that can have direct impacts on our daily lives. It’s one of the reasons that I started to write daily affirmations to change these limiting beliefs and start to create limitless beliefs and strategies to work through them. Here are some of the things I’ve been doing to help myself grow:

Look for Solutions

If my immediate reaction to something is “oh, that won’t work” or “that’s impossible” I look at the big picture and try to find solutions. Perhaps it seems like it won’t work or it’s not possible because I haven’t tried before or that’s the way I’ve always done it. For example, I’ve been struggling to lose weight. Instead of saying that nothing is working, I can reframe it and say the things I’ve tried haven’t worked. Therefore, what else can I try? Perhaps I need to combine some strategies and make them work in tandem to see the kind of results that I’m looking for.

Take Breaks – let it marinate

If I have lots of negative thoughts or limiting beliefs in a row, then I know it’s time to step back or step away. It’s easy to get caught up in the rat race of work, work, work, but that connection to a greater purpose needs to stay front and center. This is where I use strategies of visualization or go outside for a walk and breathe in that fresh air.

Recognize the thoughts in real time

This is a challenging one that I’ve truly been working on. It’s especially difficult when limiting beliefs have been such a part of my practice and I didn’t even realize it. I’ve particularly had a lot of financial blocks associated with what I thought I deserved or what was possible. So even though my blog hasn’t even made a full dollar yet, I’m taking any limiting belief or thought that comes my way and transforming them.

Now when I have thoughts about an action or activity or myself, I analyze them and decide if it serves me in a positive or negative capacity. If I determine that it’s negative or holding me back from greater potential, then I go back to the solutions aspect.

Write positive affirmations and surround yourself with them

Truly one of the most powerful things that I’ve done to break free from limiting beliefs is to write down affirmations. I have a goal of at least 3-5 per day that should be written. I also have cards posted in my office work area – “I am thankful”, “I am capable”, “I am valued”, “Anything is possible” so that there are constant visual reminders of that change in thought patterns. My therapist and I have a goal that I will repeat my chosen affirmations to myself in the mirror at least 3 times per day. That has been transforming me to see myself in a more positive light as well.

What can you do?

This process is highly individual and requires a commitment to change. The first thing you need to do is recognize the limiting beliefs you have about family, personal growth, finances, professional goals, and prioritize the areas you wish to change. Limiting beliefs can be a detriment to reaching personal goals and creating the life you want. And realize that you don’t have to be the way you’ve always been or believe the things you’ve always believed. Start small and set guiding goals for each week and keep going!

Posted in Goal, Personal Skills, Time Management

Setting Guiding Goals for the Week

Yes, I admit I am very attached to my calendar, my to do lists, and effective scheduling. I even set weekly plans months in advance. However, I used to make those weekly lists much more detailed than I do now. And that’s okay because time management and task management systems should evolve as your needs change. There are definitely strategies that remain helpful at any phase of planning, but what worked for you 2 years ago might not be as effective anymore. It’s important to continually evaluate if your systems are working for you and make changes as needed.

I recently started to keep my schedule a bit looser in some sense, which is the opposite of the time blocking method I’ve used in the past. Time blocking works really well for me when my schedule is packed and I have a lot to get done. Fortunately, since finishing my degree, I’m in a new stage of creating, where my schedule is much more focused on personal and professional development goals. I call these GUIDING GOALS.

So I’ll shared some of the strategies I’m using now to stay on target to reach my goals.

  1. First I set up my summer 2021 weekly planning document. For each of my category buckets, I list out my goals for the week being mindful of busier weeks and what is realistic. For example, I need to earn some additional money on non-teaching weeks, so I set a money goal for, which is one the ways I made additional money. I also forward to potential expenses and set that as my guiding goal for that bucket. This document is my roadmap to success.
  2. Meet with an accountability partner – This step is especially important for me because it helps me prioritize my tasks each week. I may have my guiding goals such as write 2 blog posts, design a new Etsy template, or exercise a certain number of minutes, but they are not prescribed to a certain day yet. This one hour conversation allows me and my partner to share what we’d like to accomplish in the given week, explore our calendars, and set potential work times to meet those guiding goals. We sometimes even block out special work sessions during the week if our calendar allows. I suggest finding someone to be an accountability partner for you because it definitely helps you stay on track toward whatever it is you plan to accomplish.
  3. Set daily intentions – While I have a general overview of what I’d like to get done within the week and potential work times, I use the beginning of each day to sketch out what that day will look like. I go back to my goals document and see what I have already knocked off and think about what could be a good focus for that day. So even though I may not have every minute of my week planned out in advance, just that 15 minutes of reflection each morning helps me stay on track and not jump all over the place. Additionally, if I wake up in a particularly non-motivating mood, I may use some of that day for a nature recharge.
  4. Communicate, communicate, communicate – I feel like I’m a broken record with this one, but it’s important to communicate your schedule, your goals, and your needs to those who work closely with you. I do have a part time job which requires me to be present for certain meetings or get certain tasks done. However, those hours are not set and differ each week so it is important for me to communicate my weekly goals with my supervisor. I am extremely fortunate to have a supervisor who advocates for mental health breaks and prioritizing, and I know that is not always the case for employees. On the flip side, if blocks of time have been scheduled for meetings and they haven’t been filled, I always ask if it’s okay for me to remove that block from calendar so I can work on some of the other guiding goals I have.

TAKEAWAYS from this post:

  • Be mindful of the need to change systems in different seasons of your life
  • Communicate effectively
  • Set weekly guiding goals
  • Set daily intentions
Posted in Work From Home

Does Every Meeting Need to be Video?

After over a year of pandemic working, I think we can safely assume that many people are burned out from Zoom. A recent article, citing research by Dr. Jeremy Bailenson, explained why Zoom is in fact so much more tiring than meeting in person or just simply having a conference call. I encourage you to read the article, but the short version is that we have lots of close-up eye contact, looking at ourselves more, higher cognitive load, and that mobility is reduced. The article linked above offers some solutions to these issues.

Meetings take up so much time in our work schedule, and the reality is, does everything really need to be a video meeting? The default was Zoom this past year, which grew from 4 million in revenue in 2018 to 21.7 million in 2020. And now it almost seems like people have forgotten the phone since we aren’t necessarily walking to our coworkers office. Now the question becomes how many people are planning to go back to the office? What does the future of work look like? And if people continue to work from home, do we need to continue video meetings all the time?

Personally, I have started to ask for a phone whenever a video isn’t necessary for the communication piece. Yes, a lot of communication is nonverbal, but quick check-ins can be much more expedient through a phone call rather than waiting for everyone to log into Zoom because inevitably someone will talk and forget they are still on mute and then have to repeat themselves anyway.

I admit, my default this past year has also been to just initiate a Zoom meeting from the get go. However, I’ve started to ask people what they prefer when scheduling meetings. A little over a month ago, someone asked for phone and it got me thinking about how automatic my response is these days to schedule a Zoom. So now I like to give people the choice. I have found that even if you are sharing documents, you can actually do so by using Google Drive products and just use your full screen to view the shared document while having the phone on speaker.

However, my very informal Twitter poll is informing me that 82% of the people voting (of my tiny sample size), do in fact still want Zoom for a meeting with 2-3 people, and someone even commented that they prefer phone for 2 people, but Zoom for 3. So perhaps there’s an advantage to Zoom with the more people you have on the call. It’s certainly easier to tell who is speaking when you can see their little square light up.

For me, I’m going to start scaling back on the video and upping my phone usage, or maybe just declining meetings in general. Perhaps it just needs to be an email. Check out this post for some email tips and this post for video tips.

Pro tip: When scheduling meetings, be empathetic to the people you’re asking to be on video. Ask them if phone would be easier. Maybe they need to do the dishes on the conference call or maybe, just maybe, like me, they are Zoomed out.

Posted in Blogging, Lifestyle, Personal Skills, Time Management

My Favorite YouTubers That I Follow: Inspirational Channels to Keep Learning

Since I recently started my YouTube channel and blog, I thought it would be fun to share some of the channels I watch on a regular basis that have inspired me. There are a lot of wonderful, engaging, and informative channels that can help you learn to grow your channel, build your blog, and create content as well. Or, if you’re just looking for helpful information, I will share some topic areas and suggested YouTubers to follow. I’m not going to rank them in any particular order because it’s not content to necessarily compare since each offers amazing videos and helpful advice.

Productivity and Time Management:

The YouTuber who’s video inspired me to just put myself out there and do it, whether I’m ready or not, was Ali Abdaal. He includes videos on productivity, technology, and tips and strategies for a variety of things, including staying motivated and managing your time. There are tons of other productivity YouTubers, but Ali is my favorite.

Blogging Tips:

I love going to Nakisha Wynn for blogging tips and strategies to stay motivated and make the most of your content and marketing. She releases a video a week that provides useful information about finding a niche and ways to make money as a blogger.

If you’re interested in learning about marketing using Pinterest, my go to resource is Shruti Pangtey If you subscribe to her email list, you get access to a free webinar where she breaks down content strategy for using Pinterest to market your blog.

Interesting Information:

I love to eat good food and a great channel to get healthy and budget friendly recipes is from Fit Men Cook. And the recipes are yummy!

Now, this person is newer to YouTube, but has an amazing blog that I’ve been following for quite some time. Anne-Laure studies neuroscience and provides really interesting articles about how the brain works and how to be productive.

The videos on the next channel never disappoint and no wonder there is a stampede following Kelly Stamps. Whether you want to learn strategies for YouTube, follow interesting vlogs, or get general life advice, this is the channel for you.

Growing on YouTube:

So in order to reach my goal of 1000 subscribers by the end of 2021, I watch videos on strategies to do that. A really helpful channel is Annie Dubé. The videos are to the point, super clear, and provide actionable steps to grow your YouTube channel.

Creative – Etsy and Designing:

The first YouTuber I like to watch videos from is Alissa Rose. If you are looking to sell on Etsy and open up a shop, this creator has tons of helpful tutorial videos guiding you each step of the way. There are videos on social media strategy, designing digital products, and more.

The next YouTuber I like to watch videos from is Kirstin with KDigitalStudio. I recently got an iPad and bought the digital creating program Procreate. It is an amazing program and Kirstin has excellent videos on how to create digital designs on Procreate.

Study Tips:

This channel has over 1 million subscribers and it’s easy to see why. The study tips and note-taking strategies are so helpful and the videos are easy to watch. The channel I go to for study habits and advice is StudyTee by Therese.

Another helpful channel with study information is Estella with Study To Success. One day, I hope to have as beautiful an office set up. I love all the colorful products and it’s fun to see how to making studying not so boring.


There are tons of YouTube channels designated for the stocks and Bitcoin, but the ones I follow provide a little bit of everything. The first one I follow is SaraFinance, where you can learn about affiliate marketing, drop shipping, budgeting, and more.

The next one is Charlie Chang, who has a large following on Tik Tok as well as YouTube. This is a great channel to learn about side hustles, investing, and other ways to make passive income and become an entrepreneur.

There are lots more channels that I follow, but I wanted to share some of my favorite ones with you here. Hopefully, you can find some useful information from them like I do. If you have another suggestion, drop it in the comments below!

Posted in Finance, Work From Home

Ways to Make Money Working From Home

Well, now that I’ve had the privilege of working full time from home for over a year, the one thing I can say I have enjoyed the most is autonomy over my schedule. I did have that before, even when going into the office or teaching at my school to some extent, but more time was available to me without the commuting back and forth to different places.

Now, I’m in a bit of a 3 month limbo here between my current part-time job and my next full-time venture. I’ve utilized some of these freelancing sites before off and on to try to make a bit extra, but I’m especially interested in earning a stable income over the next couple of months from these opportunities.

I will share the two main sources of part-time WFH income I’ve used and then some of my aspirations to grow over the next couple of months.

  1. – This is a transcription company that has clients from all over the world submit interviews and meetings to be transcribed. You have to apply by completing a transcription test. There is a learning curve by getting used to their system and platform, but once you figure it out, it gets much easier. You start out at the lowest level and then if your stats are high enough after 800 minutes, you move up to the highest tier. This is better because you have access to higher paying jobs and clearer audio files. Some of the initial files can be tough in the lower category, but if you stick with it, you’ll find it’s actually pretty fun. The pay is per minute and varies by each file, and is paid out weekly.
  2. Upwork or Fiverr – So far, I’ve only completed jobs on Upwork for editing and formatting. Because of my background in education and research, this category works well for me. Upwork is what I started with about 3 years ago, but now I’m interested in setting up a profile on Fiverr as well. It’s pretty simple to set up a profile, but be prepared to answer questions when you’re bidding on jobs to show your level of experience or expertise.

New WFH goals:

  1. Etsy – I started a shop a few months ago, but haven’t had a lot of time to continue adding products. I’ve watched a lot of YouTube video tutorials on making and selling digital products. My shop is called Tracy Dee Designs and currently I have 11 digital productivity products and 1 physical product. I am learning how to create more designs on my iPad using the Procreate app so I definitely hope to keep adding to my inventory and create some more income from that.
  2. E-books – I have a lot of training in education and since writing is still in my routine, I was thinking about creating some e-books to sell. I made a 30 day time management journal that I posted in my Etsy shop. Another avenue is to use Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing and make sure to format designs in Canva to match their requirements.

If you google making money working from home, you’ll get tons of articles and websites directing you to opportunities. I know I only listed 4 different avenues here, but I prefer to start with some small, proven websites and then build from there if I still need more. For example, if you stay consistent with transcribing on a little each day, you could make a pretty decent monthly side hustle.

The thing that is appealing to me about the Etsy store and the e-books is that it really turns into passive income over time. It takes effort to create everything up front, but with digital products, you only need to do it one time. I’m also taking time to market on Pinterest and of course, here on the blog and on my YouTube channel. All of that is part of committing to a goal that may take a little bit of time to get off the ground.

Whatever you choose to do, make sure to verify it is legitimate and decide if it is worth the time investment to get started.