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By Camille Blanchod

🛠️ Interesting tools & November thoughts 💭

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🛠️ Interesting tools & November thoughts 💭
By Camille Blanchod • Issue #9 • View online
Hi all, it’s been a while again ! 👋
I’ve decided to let go of the weekly format of this newsletter - while I want to continue writing on a regular basis, it doesn’t have to be that often. If I get one issue out per month, then great! If more than one get published, amazing! No need to stress about it for now.
Without further ado, let’s talk about some cool tools !

What's in my toolbox?
Over the past year, I’ve grown to use & love a couple of tools.
Obviously Notion is the first one, but you already know that!
I’m not one to usually pay for tools unless really necessary, but ever since I’ve decided to jump into entrepreneurship, I’ve had to change this mindset. Sometimes, paying for tools is a true improvement in your life, especially if you’re running your own business. Plus you simply can’t only use free versions of tools ; you’ll eventually be limited.
So what are the tools that I use & pay for?
  • Notion - I think I don’t need to go deeper here, right?
  • Loom - absolutely necessary on a weekly basis. Saves me so much time, no matter if I’m the one sending or receiving a video. Very helpful to record quick video script briefs, meeting debriefs, to show bugs, make short tutorials, etc… A real time-saver!
  • Whereby - when it comes to communication, I simply dislike Zoom and got tired of creating 1000 Google Meet rooms, even though it’s quick & painless. Whereby allows me to have my own room(s) ; it has simple settings, not many distractions, run smoothly… I simply adore it. Quick & simple.
  • Circle - I love the balance in Circle between overall simplicity & complex options/deep personnalisation. It’s essentially a more modern approach to forums. Since it’s a still recent company, many features are still being added & the support team has been great every (few) times I’ve had to contact them. I use it both as a community member & community admin - both experiences are great.
  • Super - after months of using Fruition to host my personal Notion website, I ended up moving over to Super and while I haven’t spent much time playing around it, it’s been delivering all I was expecting of it.
  • Stripe - it goes without saying that Stripe has been crucial to my business. Very powerful, efficient and practical.
  • Calendly - another extremely useful tool when it comes to allowing folks to book some time with you - it’s easy to use & personalize, efficient, reliable and quick. Removes the friction from finding a time that fits both you & the person wanting to have a meeting with you.
  • Gumroad - I just love it. I love the company’s culture, I love their recent redesign, the ease with which you can create your own digital shop & start sharing and selling your creations. I’m not yet on the paid plan, but it’s on my radar in case I do decide later down the line to sell more products.
  • Canva - I almost forgot to add it to the list, but yes, I’ve been using Canva since late 2016 and only this year I became a paying user, and I don’t regret my decision. Best design tool for non-designers (and I’ve used Photoshop, The Gimp, Figma & more). Nothing beats the ease of use, friendliness and fun of Canva.
Other interesting tools
I use quite a few browser extensions (on Chrome) that help me a lot on a weekly basis:
  • Save to Notion: I use it almost daily, to capture outside content and bring it into a dedicated Notion database. It’s honestly amazing, and there are lots of ways it can be used.
  • GoFullPage: So far, the best screenshoting tool I’ve found on Windows.
  • ColorZilla: very useful color-picker & overall design extension.
  • PrevYou: if you have a Youtube channel or work with someone that does, this little extension is great! It allows you to simulate showing your thumbnail & title of choice as if it was a published Youtube video, so you can get a better feel of the result.
  • Notion Time Tracker: allow you to add a little chronometer to your Notion databases, so you can track the time spent on a task, for example.
  • Magical Text Expander: if you’ve ever worked in customer support before, it essentially works like macros. You can create your own shortcuts and it will then enter whatever text you associated to it. Very useful when you find yourself repeating things over & over.
  • Video speed controller: very useful when you’re trying to watch a video faster, but the native video client doesn’t allow you to speed it up. You simply have to click on the extension & select what speed you want, and boom!
When it comes to tools I’ve tried this year, I can name TL;DV that has a nice integration between Notion & Google Meet, allowing you to automatically timestamps your video recordings with your meeting notes ; Flurly, another simple marketplace ; Typedream, a block-based website builder ; Tally, a fantastic form builder.
Regarding online events, I’ve tried Lu.ma, Livestorm, Crowdcast and I’ve had great experiences with all of them. I especially love Crowdcast’s simplicity and Livestorm’s advanced features. I’d suggest trying them out & seeing which one matches best your needs & budget.
As I’m typing all of this, I realize that I could still name dozens of tools, so I’ll stop here for now… and maybe keep sharing more in another edition! ;)
Let me know if you’re up for it!
November thoughts
November has been way more rough than I thought. In a good way, though - just more intense than what I had in mind.
Having people staying over for a couple of weeks mean disrupting my routine, which I now realize is taking a toll on me.
I’ve struggled to work in a deep, focused manner while I also struggled to relax and rest.
Ironic, uh?
December is also going to be mostly comprised of a lot of social interactions, which are definitely more taxing for me, especially after getting used to lockdowns and very limited physical social events.
So I’m trying my best to remain compassionate to myself, to let go of any unnecessary stress, and to let go of perfection or trying to achieve it.
Even though I haven’t been able to properly follow it, Khe Hy’s course “Supercharge your productivity” has helped me question life, as well as some other interactions I’ve had recently. Once I finish all the material, I’ll write more about SYP - the snippets I got so far were all very impactful & insightful.
See you next time!
May you get all the rest you need & move towards your goals next week. Take care.
Camille
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Camille Blanchod

Findings, thoughts and ideas ranging from my usual topics (Notion, organisation, productivity, systems) to others like arts, marketing, psychology, and pretty much anything I find interesting.

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