Music Teacher's Helper Blog

Hi everyone! It’s Rock again with your weekly software updates / announcements.

We have 1 update this week….

  • We’ve updated our billing module in the new version of Music Teacher’s Helper so that new changes in rates / events affect only current and future lessons / events. Prior lesson and event billing will not be affected.

We also have an announcement..

We’ve made a change in how you pay for your Music Teacher’s Helper account.

Starting Tuesday, Oct. 17th, 2017 we will no longer use PayPal for new or updated MTH subscriptions as we transition to credit card only payments for your MTH account.

Your students / parents will still be able to pay you with PayPal.

For more details, see this article.

Our team continues to work behind the scenes to make Music Teacher’s Helper a better product for you all week, every week.

If you have any questions for us or have any issues, please reach out to support team at support@musicteachershelper.com

(Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash)

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Photo by Fineas Anton on Unsplash

Hi everyone! It’s Rock again with your weekly software announcements.

This week we’re going to share a little more of the workings here at Music Teacher’s Helper — a special thank you to teacher Garreth for the input from last week.

 

Today we’re starting with news about our staff…

We’re happy to announce that Ken Rhodes, our long time Senior Customer Service Rep, has been promoted to Product Designer. Ken is also a music teacher, plays electric and classical guitar, and has 2 associate computer degrees.

Ken knows our software inside and out, and will be working closely with our programmers to make Music Teacher’s Helper work optimally for our teachers. Seriously, he’s one of the nicest and hardworking guys. Congrats Ken.

 

Next up our software team has resolved 14 issues this week — here are some of them…

  • We’ve resolved an issue where student notes were not displaying in the student profile
  • For the teacher and student side, the proper rate will now be applied to canceled events
  • Fixed an issue causing problems when students were not assigned a rate
  • Teachers can now change an adult student to a child student without issues
  • Team has updated the text in multiple areas of MTH and corrected typographical errors
  • An issue where a family had a duplicate entry has been resolved

Our team continues to work behind the scenes to make Music Teacher’s Helper a better product for you all week, every week.

If you have any questions for us or have any issues, please reach out to support team at support@musicteachershelper.com

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Vacations are just to get away from myself.

I love to travel and explore new places, but I’ve begun to notice something: each time I go away, I gain something.  It’s not just the usual rest, relaxation, and renewal.  That’s vitally important,  but it’s beyond that.  I gain some mental space,  I can think clearer, see my best options, and make better decisions.  I become my best self.

But it doesn’t have to be a big trip.  

Coffee shops, libraries, and hotel lobbies are some of my favorite places to write, plan, and get work done.  Why?  I started wondering about this.  Is it just the beautiful furniture?  The ambiance of the space?  The people?  What I’ve begun to realize is that I’m running away from my stuff!  

Have you ever rearranged the furniture in your home or studio?

I tend to do this a lot.  I feel better immediately with some arrangements.  

Wind and Water

When I lived in Hong Kong, I had a friend who was a feng shui master.  This is the ancient art of harmonizing with the physical environment.   Feng shui literally means wind and water.  As a musician, I have no trouble understanding harmonization!   Who wouldn’t want to be in harmony with their surroundings?   It works, but over time, I forgot about it.

This summer, I was sitting in a state park reading,  The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying:  the Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo.  You may have heard of this book as it has been a NY Times best-seller.   

Metaphysically Speaking

As I read, I was intrigued.  Kondo is a bit wacky, and I like that.  She speaks metaphysically about objects and clothes.  If you’ve ever seen any films by the Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki, then you will feel right at home.  Musicians are metaphysical too!  We believe in the power of sound and waves of energy even if we don’t fully understand it.

So here’s what I realized: you can access your best self from the outside in.  By decluttering and purging unnecessary stuff, you clear space physically, emotionally, and mentally.  It allows you to be the best you can be.

Each and every possession takes a little bit of our mental quota.  Have you heard of decision fatigue?  (I wrote an article about it here.)  It’s why they don’t allow presidents to order their own meals.  There’s a finite amount of decisions a human being can make each day.  It’s why Steve Jobs wore the same outfit every day.  It’s also the reason car salesmen wear you down with an overwhelm of options!

A 3-Step Process To Your Best Self

1) Purge your unnecessary stuff.  

Donate, sell, or throw it away.  If it doesn’t, in Marie Kondo’s words, “spark joy,” get rid of it.  “Letting go is more important than tidying…Being surrounded by things that spark joy makes you happy.”

2) Digitize papers and/or sheet music.  

Use a scanner or even your smartphone.

3) Organize.  

Don’t buy all the fancy bins and organizing tools, use your closets, shelves, and cabinets.  Kondo has a rule about storing everything vertically.  Even clothes.  She has a special way of folding clothes.

For digital organization, use Evernote, Dropbox, Google Drive, iCloud, or something similar.  See the guided tour of Dropbox below.

Depending on how much clutter you have, this process can be a weekend project or up to six months!  But it’s worth it,  soon your space will be reflective of the person you truly want to be.  Detoxing your home and/or workspace will also detox your body and mind.  

Clearing Space For Learning

Students and clients can also feel the difference.  By having a clean, clear, tidy space for learning, they can focus on the content, not the clutter.  It’s subtle, but clearing your space will free up energy for them as well.

I’m not quite finished with my detoxing, but already, I feel lighter, clearer, and happier.  It’s a surprisingly simple way to change your life and access your highest, best self.   If you feel overwhelmed during this process, take a break and listen to something like this.

“Laughter is an instant vacation.” – Milton Berle.

Recommended Reading and Resources

 

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