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Do you charge friends and family for your time?
17 Apr

Do you charge friends and family for your time?

This is a question most people who, at any level, class themselves as self-employed. During my research I found this quote I love.

You know you’re a hairdresser when your invited to a dinner party and everyone else is asked to bring a plate, but your asked to bring your scissors

I’m not a hairdresser, but I am a geek and do IT support. I’ve lost count of how many times I’m asked to take a quick look at someone’s laptop, iPad, printer or any other digital device.

Specifically though lets talk NXFIFTEEN.

I wanted to host my own emails. I wanted something with full groupware support, email, calendar and contacts the full range. Since then things have grown. More and more family and friends have been added to the server and as server usage has grown.

I’ve had to upgrade my hosting more than once to support more people. I’ve been covering these costs cause I was stuck in a mindset never changed, at start it was something I wanted and everyone was just tagging along. The problem is, it’s not as true as it used to be.

In the beginning I had a host that matched my needs, but over the years I’ve added more memory, a faster processor and recently a bigger hard drive. Not to mention my time spent updating software making things secure and backing everything up.

So at what point am I no longer doing this for myself but start doing it everyone else. The truth is it’s long since passed.

Now do I start charging for the services I offer or do I continue footing the bill?

The truth is I don’t want to charge, and that’s my choice. Others in similar situations may feel differently. There really is no one size fits all rule. So I’ve had to weigh up my own pros and cons, plus consider my own feelings but in the end I want to pass on the bill to someone else – after all how do I decide how much to charge anyway.

So if I’m not planning to charge, whats the alternative? I’ve opened the site up too contributions…. who knows what this will end up like

Everybody Writes
15 Apr

Everybody Writes

The only way to improve my writing is by writing. So what do I write about?

I intend to write more tutorials and how to guides, but since I’m resolving to give my work the time of dwarves these will take time to write and research. So what do I write in the mean time?

As with most problems I started at Google and asked it. I came across this PDF from WordPress. Intended to give writers a new topic to blog each day of the year. I’m not yet ready for a daily blog but it’s, still a great resource and full of ideas I can play with.

So I’m setting up a new tag Post A Day. Each of these post will be off topic compared to the rest of this site, but I hope they’ll still be of interest to someone out there.

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Self Control Isn’t Working Anymore
14 Apr

Self Control Isn’t Working Anymore

Full disclosure, I hate reading self-help books. In my 670 library I think there are only 4 such books. That all said this post was spurred on from such a book.

As many may know I’ve been on a health journey for more than a few years now. And to say I’ve been taking the seismic route is just a polite way of saying “five steps forward four steps back”.

Self control has been my main method all this time, despite reading, more than once, willpower is a finite resource. And it’s true, least for me. As the day goes on it gets harder and harder to saying no to the temptations all around.

So if will power and self-control aren’t the answer what is? That’s kinda where I am just now, working out what the solution is, and why I’ve been reading this book; Willpower Doesn’t Work by Benjamin Hardy.

According to his book

A lot of the basic research in psychology says that your willpower is essentially an exhaustive resource,


It’s not unlimited; it runs out very fast.

Since that matches my experience I can relate, and that’s probably the only reason I keep reading.

Hardy goes on to say our behaviors are out sourced to our environment. His premise is most things are addictions, either for types of food or simply short-term rewards.

It sounded strange to me at first but the more I think about it the more it makes some sense. I know when crave sugar and sweets I’m at work. At home it never crosses my mind. Over the weekend my diet, for the most part, is better. Far from perfect but better all the same.

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What is food
13 Apr

What is food

We all need it and we all eat it. We have a relationship with food and I think that relationship defines our health.

I want to eat healthily, but I’ve not been for years so this is still something I need to talk myself into. When I’m good it’s easy, when I’m not I slip.

My Slimming World classes teaches me to plan and organize my meals, and I do try, but no amount of planning will make up for a general apathy when the time comes to cook.

Just now food for me is a mechanical thing. I’m eating what’s to hand and what’s easy. The number of sandwiches I’m going through is disgraceful. I’ve misplaced my passion for what I’m eating. If I don’t enjoy my food how do I find the enthusiasm to cook it in the first place.

I know this relationship with food is at its best holding me back and at the worst dragging me backwards.

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Friends Don’t Let Friends See Ads
11 Apr

Friends Don’t Let Friends See Ads

I’ve run this site for years and like all things it costs money. Hosting, domain names and even some of the WordPress plugins I use and highly recommend. These things all have costs involved, costs I happily fork out each year. I’ve tried monetizing this site in the past with little or no success, yet I’ve decided to try once more. But this time I’m thinking about it. I have come up with a plan.
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