Women can do anything — but not everything. As the largest online career community for women, we at Fairygodboss realize that balance is a myth, and that picking what to prioritize on a day-to-day basis isn't always easy. In the #MakingTime series, women share with us how, for one day, they chose to spend their most precious resource: time.
Who: Allison Bethell
What: Writer, Senior Editor at The Close, Real estate investor, Wife, Dog mom, Step mom
Where: Miami, Florida
I’m so not a morning person but am trying to get up ‘early’ to get more done. The first thing I do when I wake up is say what I’m thankful for, read a scripture, a daily affirmation and play 15 minutes of brain games on an app on my phone. It’s supposed to help with memory and acts like a workout for my brain. Then I check my emails, scan for anything important and quickly get dressed for boxing class.
I recently started taking boxing classes and scheduled them in the morning so I don’t make an excuse to miss them. It’s a great way to start my day and leaves me feeling energized. On the way to class I listen to a sermon by an upbeat pastor on Sirius radio and take some time to do a short meditation.
After class I stop for a cortadito, a cuban coffee, similar to espresso and the only kind of coffee I like. They sell them everywhere in Miami. It keeps me going all day
9: 30 a.m.
I get home, let my dog outside so he can run around the lake and play with his new duck friends. While he does that, I take a quick dip in the pool to cool off. Miami summers can be brutal but having a pool and living on the water definitely helps.
I make myself a mango, strawberry and spinach smoothie, using fresh mangoes from the tree in the front of our house. While I drink my smoothie I make some to do lists for the day and answer any forums, comments or Haros that have come in from fitsmallbusiness.com.
I make my husband his favorite breakfast: the same smoothie I have, scrambled eggs with cheese and bacon, and of course my dog eats leftover bacon and eggs. Then I unpack 1 box, we just moved into our new house and I’ve been so busy with work and travel etc I haven’t finished unpacking. Really, I unpack a box just so I have something to wear.
I write three outlines for the articles I will be working on this week, set up some calls for potential sources for the articles and get any images or templates lined up. I try to incorporate at least 1 - 2 experts in the field I’m writing about so their comments can add substance to the article.
My step daughter is on summer vacation from college and staying with us. I give her a driving lesson in a nearby parking lot and let her drive down an empty side street. She is doing really well and hasn’t hit any curbs or parked cars yet.
I have a call with a mortgage lender to ask him a few questions about closing costs for an upcoming article. The call goes really well and I will add him to my list of professionals to reach out to for quotes for upcoming articles.
I make a quick lunch and grab a water and walk my dog to the park. While I’m there I call my contractor to confirm the installation date for the new flooring we are having installed in our home. It’s going to be white glass and porcelain tiles and I think it will look amazing. It will also make great before and after photos for my husband’s interior design business.
I attend a couple writing-related virtual meetings from my kitchen table. I have an office in my house but only use it for file storage and a place to put the printer. I prefer to take my laptop and notebook and move around the house as I please.
One of the meetings is with my editor and we go over what I will be working on for the week. We get along well and I enjoy these calls, catching up and brainstorming about new article ideas and ways to give the reader the most up to date, well researched information we can provide.
We review a couple calculators I have been working on including a balloon mortgage calculator and a cap rate calculator. They’re free tools that we include in some of our real estate investing articles so the reader can get a better understanding of an investment property rate of return, their monthly payments etc. After the call I make notes on the calculators and start writing the article on carrying costs.
I call my property managers in Florida and Pennsylvania to check on how everything is going. I do this at least every few weeks so I can get an update on any problem tenants, necessary repairs, etc. All seems to be going smoothly so that’s good. I managed my own properties for years, but having professionals doing it is worth the money and saves me so much time and headaches. I love knowing that no tenants are going to call me at 2 a.m about losing their keys or an overflowing toilet.
When my husband gets home, we take our daughter and dog to go look at a property we want to buy for AirBnb rentals. It’s in a desirable neighborhood, has great outdoor space and with some renovations, could be an ideal short term rental property.
Then we take out our boat and goto an outdoor bar and restaurant for dinner. I used to live in Philadelphia and really love all of the year round outdoor activities Miami has to offer. We watch the sunset from the outdoor restaurant and enjoy our meal. Next door is a local gallery and we love art so we take a look inside. Another perk about living in Miami is that so many businesses stay open late and we are definitely night owls.
After we get home, we ‘play’ Jeopardy. We watch it together pretending we are contestants and get very competitive. Then we relax in the hot tub on our patio with a glass of champagne with raspberries... my fave and then I do some more writing. I am the most creative and often do my best writing at night.
Then it's time to let my dog out one last time, take a shower, do my nighttime face ritual of lighting a candle, using serum, moisturizer and a face mask and then go to bed.
Interested in contributing to Fairygodboss' #MakingTime series? Email [email protected] with "#MakingTime" in the subject line.