Happy July! I hope that all is well with you and your loved ones.
This year has stirred up just about every emotion possible, and I still don’t know what to make of it all.
I’m afraid I have to disagree with many of the things that have happened this year. From the management of Coronavirus to the issues resulting from the George Floyd situation, things are bad. Hate has consumed just about all aspects of the United States and even the world. It’s sad. It’s not how it is supposed to be. Things need to change.
🤟 Though there are many things to direct anger at, the world needs more love and patience. I have avoided lashing out in anger because it would likely be misguided. I am upset, but I was not personally attacked. Until I must protect myself and my family, I will lead with love and patience.
⛰️ In May, we moved from California to Montana. I plan to share more about that soon. I started planning the move about two years, and last year after our summer trip, we decided that we would move after our kids finished their 2019/2020 school year.
💼 The pandemic affected my business to some extent. I had some photography jobs canceled, but I had a lot of client work through my online marketing agency, Hill Media Group. Companies had to pivot quickly and take more of their business online. Though I sometimes beat myself up over going in too many directions professionally, it paid off this time. I have also been doing a lot of Real Estate Photography since arriving in Montana. I am currently working on redesigning my Photography website.
📹 It has been hard to make video content for my YouTube channels with all of the changes going on. The kids are home all day, which limits my time to film. The pandemic kept me indoors. I haven’t figured out where to film since moving to Montana, and the weather has been a little wet here. I’m figuring it out, and I plan to get back to a regular schedule of producing video content soon.
🏋️ Remember that weight I lost late last year eating healthier and achieving 20,000 steps for an entire month? I gained some of that back during the pandemic. I recently got a gym membership here in Montana and have been hiking once a week with my family. I am still intermittent fasting and am starting to eat cleaner again.
📤 I have sat down many times to write a newsletter. I initially promised a weekly newsletter, but I struggle with the need to provide value. I feel that if I don’t have something to teach someone, I should keep it to myself. Sharing in this way was a stretch for me today. I decided to share today because I want to maintain my relationship with all of you. It means so much to me that you would subscribe to my newsletter. Even if it only contains life updates, I want to be sharing it with you.
Thanks for subscribing to my newsletter. Stay safe and healthy,
I have hesitated writing because if you are like me, you’ve received plenty of emails. I wanted to make sure I had some value for you, but before I did that, I had to get over a few of my own issues I was experiencing over the past month. I was immediately affected by Covid-19 losing about $35,000 in business due to the cancellation of several event video production jobs.
Last month was not the most productive month for me either. I outlined why in a video on what’s changed in my Notion usage especially in regards to my Daily Log. With everything going on, it was enough to provide the kick in the pants I needed to get back on track.
Many of us are facing uncertainty, which makes us feel vulnerable. I remember feeling this in 2001 when 9/11 hit months after I had opened my first brick-and-mortar retail business. I remember feeling it again during the market crash in 2008. It is different this time, as I know you’re aware, but we still have to keep moving forward.
I believe that this experience is going to change the way we communicate with each other. We are utilizing our mobile technology more than ever before because it’s the only safe way to communicate right now. You might find this video I did on 5 Apps You Need to Survive Social Distancing:
Businesses also have to get smart about how they can maintain relationships with their customers. I am helping my clients do that right now using social media and video.
I have also put up some new videos on my YouTube channels, so I wanted to share those with you.
I am planning to start going live on Instagram a few times each week. I have a couple of interviews set up that should be pretty interesting for those of you who are small business owners. Make sure to follow me on Instagram and turn on notifications so you get pinged when I go live.
I hope that all is well with you and that you are safe.
Working From Home
If you are working from home, I have some tips for you. I started working from home again over a year ago. With my family now home all day, it has changed the way I work. I put together a video on 10 Tips for Working from Home.
If you are a Mac user, you might like this video on the Top 5 Mac Productivity Apps for Working from Home I put together.
With extra time on our hands due to not being able to take part in our communal activities, what should we do with that extra time? I believe times like this are opportunities for us to grow. I have a few ideas on What You Can Do While Social Distancing. Check out the video:
Communication is changing. We are using video, even more, these days which means learning How to Film Yourself. I put this video together discussing how to do that.
I have been using this opportunity to rethink what I am putting out to the world through my websites, social media, and YouTube. I love to teach and I want to lean into that even more. Many of you have taken one or more of my online courses, I plan to work on those. Some of them are old and need to be updated. I have other ideas that I want to work on as well. I plan to get some new course content on LearnWithJerad.Com soon and I will update you first when it is ready.
I also want to be communicating more often, so I will be using Instagram Live and Facebook Live to do that. Make sure you are following me there.
Podcasts are on the rise. Make sure to check out my podcast, The Jerad Hill Show. Click the image to see some of my recent episodes. You can get the show in your favorite podcast player or in Spotify.
Being told to stay put is hard. We are used to being able to go where we want when we want. With the recent Covid-19 pandemic in full swing, the best practice we have is to keep our distance from others. You don’t really notice just how social you are until you can’t go be social.
Whether you are working from home or not, chances are you will have some extra time on your hands that you would have filled with extracurricular activities. Our kids’ sports have been called off, for now, we can’t go to church, and they won’t even let more than a few people in the grocery store at a time. It’s crazy.
Many will fill their time binge-watching shows or doing whatever they can to make the time pass. I suggest you use it to grow. In this video, I discuss 5 Things You Can Do While Social Distancing to keep sane.
My hope is that you use this time to grow and position yourself for success. This will pass but the world will likely look a bit different. Some companies may go virtual which means working from home is a new lifestyle for many. People may decide to start homeschooling their kids after getting a taste of what it’s like.
I am very interested to see what changes happen in society as a result of Coronavirus.
Let me know what you are doing to pass the time. Have any tips? Share them with me in the comments section.
We’re sure living in interesting times aren’t we? I can’t count the amount of movies I have watched where crazy things have happened like this but I never could have imagined living through one. It would be easy to simply wait this thing out, but I don’t want to look at this as wasted time. I believe we are given this time to do something with it and that is what I intend to do. Many people are sharing about what they are doing with their families and themselves during this time, so I thought I would share what we are doing in my home.
I work from home, so this is going to be a test for me. I am used to having three of my kids in school at least half of the day and my wife usually stays pretty social which gives me quiet mornings at home for work. On days when there was all day activity at home, I would work from a coffee shop. Those options are not available for my wife or myself now. We all have to be at home.
This will be good for me and my family. When we travelled full time for two months last year, we had to get used to being in close quarters as we were sharing a travel trailer between the six of us. It will take a few days for us to adjust, but I know it will be good for us as a family to have this extra time together. I believe it will help each of us learn to better appreciate each other and the things each of us have to do in a day.
I’m writing all of this out for a few reasons. The first is to force myself to think through it all. It is important to process everything and to make plans. Without that, I am only hoping for the best. That is not a strategy.
The second is to share what we are doing in this unique situation. Not only is this situation totally different for us but it’s different for many others who’s kids are home from school and find themselves now working from home. It can be quite chaotic and different in so many ways for most.
The third is to set public intentions. Sometimes we have to declare something publicly in order to stick to it. I did this earlier this year on my YouTube channel with my goals for 2020. I intend to use this time well both for myself and for my family.
Our Daily Family Schedule
My kids will be out of school for at least the next three weeks. My wife and I decided it is important that our kids have a schedule for the day. When at school, there is a schedule they have that they can count on. Each day they know what to expect and I want that to continue while we are at home. Most of you with kids know that a schedule is important. It helps keep things sane.
Our kids will still have school requirements during two of the three weeks they are home. One of the weeks is spring break. We will have a modified schedule for that week, but still plan to have a schedule for it.
Our daily schedule will look like this:
Though we have a schedule we intent to stick to daily, we understand that sometimes things need to be adjusted or changed as needed. This schedule is to guide us and to give our kids structure. Given the opportunity, we will try to change it up from time to time to keep things from getting boring.
My Day/Work Schedule
Working from home has already become more challenging for me lately. I started the year off pretty strong until I injured my back. That got me out of a routine and I have struggled to get back into one. A good routine for me starts with a solid morning workout which I am going to have to try to do from home for now.
My goal is to try and work out each morning. That means going for a walk or run, riding my bike, lifting the few weights I have at home, and doing some body weight workouts. With that accomplishment each morning, the stage will be set for the rest of my day.
I plan to front load my day with my work. I want to get all essential work completed early so I can be available to assist my wife if needed later in the day. My kids are not going to get the normal social interactions they get during the day so I want to be available in the afternoons to engage with them.
We had just started baseball and softball practice, which was postponed for now. When that is allowed to start back up, I want to have been practicing at home.
We have not gone crazy with our household preparedness. I went to the store today to get a few extra things but we had done our normal grocery shopping just a few days ago.
We will naturally consume more as all of us are home all day. Being that we are at home, we don’t need gallons of disinfectant or an over abundance of toilet paper. We just need what we would normally consumer plus a little extra. That is it. Everybody else needs what they need as well. It is not responsible to hoard.
The best thing that my wife and I can do as parents to our children is to maintain a sense of normality and structure for them. They are kids and should not have to deal with all of the anxieties that we have to deal with as adults. We can use situations like this to show our kids that their parents can lead in a time of crisis and we can use that time to grow closer as a family. It won’t be easy, but it is what my family needs right now. It took us less that 15 minutes to come up with a daily schedule and that will relieve a lot of stress and anxiety starting first thing tomorrow morning.
Be a Leader
I encourage you to be a leader to those who rely on you. My wife and I called all of the parents and grandparents in our family today to check on them and to see if there is anything we can do for them. They are more at risk than we are and because of that, we can help. It doesn’t matter if there are disagreements or frustrations within your family. Those things get put aside because they are not important during times like this.
Our church has also set that standard. If people who are more at risk need something, the rest of us can step up and help. That is what a healthy and productive society is supposed to do and my hope is that we hear amazing stories of how people are stepping up to help those around them for years to come. This is not a time to search for a monetary edge or to better position ourselves for success but to band together with those who are close to us and be there for each other.
This is scary and there is a lot of uncertainty. I have had a few large jobs cancel on me this past week and that will put a financial strain on things for a while, but there are people who are less fortunate, who have less control than I do. There are businesses that won’t survive this because they can’t afford to be closed for a few days let alone weeks. The best thing we can do is to be there for each other and to let those in our circle know that we are there for them.
This afternoon I told my wife and kids that it would be cool if we could use this extra time to learn something new. There is so much information online that is free or near free to consume. Most of it does not take that much time to watch. You can learn something you had no experience with during these next few weeks. Your kids can learn something they have never experienced in the next few weeks. We can use this time to grow. Here are a few ideas:
YouTube: You can search for just about anything on YouTube and learn how to do it. There are tutorials from a multitude of people on YouTube and all of those videos are free. Just search for “thing you want to learn tutorial” and you will find many who have taken the time to teach their methods in video form.
SkillShare: This is a website with structured courses on a wide variety of topics. SkillShare offers a two-month free trial. My oldest son and I started watching a course on Illustration on the iPad using an app called ProCreate, as he has shown an interest in making his own comics. Get 2-Months of SkillShare Free
Disclaimer: The SkillShare link is an affiliate link that gets you the two months free. You don’t have to pay for anything to get the free trial and you can cancel it at any time. If you do decide to stay subscribed, SkillShare provides me with a small commission. Use the free trial to learn some new skills.
My Courses: I have a few online courses on Photography and using WordPress to build and maintain websites. Almost all of my courses are free and I invite you to check them out if you have ever wanted to get to know your camera better or how to create a website. Visit LearnwithJerad.Com to see my courses. One of my goals is to update and expand my catalog of online education as I believe self-education is the way of the future for many.
I encourage you to make the most of this time. It very much feels like a set back but it is what you make of it. Use this time to learn and grow. Also use this time to grow closer to those who mean the most to you.
We are all learning just how reliant we are on others just to exist in times like this. Some have jobs they can not do and others will lose their jobs over this situation due to businesses closing or being unable to operate. The best thing you can do is to use this time to set yourself up to be less susceptible to situations like this in the future. Use this time to grow and add to your skill set so that you are more in control of your life.
If there is anything I can do to help you, please reach out. Please stay safe and healthy. Be blessed my friends.