Last week I had a GoToMeeting client call at 9am, but I had a dentist appointment at 8am. No worries, right?
But my dentist was running 40 minutes late, so I was 14 minutes late to my 9am meeting. As soon as I got home I emailed him that I was ready for the call. The instant, and I mean *the* instant I saw the meeting email, we lost all power at my house. It flickered once and nothing for the next hour and a half.
I can’t make this stuff up, folks. I emailed my client from my phone to profusely apologize for the inconvenience…and then I had no idea what to do.
I had quite a bit of work I’d planned on accomplishing that day, and I had no idea when the power would come back on. (I wound up taking a nap, but I admit that isn’t the most productive plan I could’ve come up with.)
So what can a designer do without power? Light a candle (if need be), use your phone to alert your clients of your situation, and try one of these:
#1 Sketch project ideas
Even if you don’t have all the project details, sketch out some ideas for a project you just started. Wireframe a website, doodle logo ideas, or lay out a poster.
Sketching allows you to get all of your “okay” ideas out so that you can explore the great ones.
#2 Clean your office
While you can’t vacuum, dusting, organizing, and filing can all be done without power. Tackle that stack of paper that you’ve been meaning to get to for three weeks or organize the desk drawer you can barely get open.
A clean office makes walking into it each morning that much more appealing.
#3 Make a marketing plan
Figure out your plan of attack for the next month (quarter?). What topics do you want to focus on? How are you going to use social media to reach your audience? How often are you going to publish and where?
If you can’t do any client work, work on your own business to secure your future.
#4 Create something amazing
Put together a puzzle. Free draw. Play with playdough or clay. Paint. Play dress-up with your kids. Take a walk with your dogs and really look at all the varied plant types along your way.
Use your brain in a creative way today to rejuvenate your creativity when the power comes back on.
#5 Take care of yourself
Do yoga. Sleep. Exercise. Cut up fruits and vegetables for lunch since you can’t just microwave leftover pizza. Read a book or magazine. Take a walk with your better half. Take your kids out for ice cream (assuming your entire community isn’t out).
When your body feels refreshed, your brain can work at it’s maximum capacity on your projects instead of fighting off distractions.
With super-storms blasting the globe (and doing a lot more than just knocking out the power), the season of construction upon us, and just plain ol’ equipment failures, you might find yourself without power, possibly for a long period of time.
Use your time wisely to ensure you’re eager and willing when the power turns back on.
Now it’s your turn…
Have you ever had the power go out at an inopportune moment? What have you done to effectively pass the time? Share your stories with us in the comments on this post.