If you anything like me, you came to doula work because you felt called to support parents and families in and around birth.
But, the running a business part - that part was COMPLETELY foreign to me.
Today, I'm going to share a bit with you about a tool I've found so helpful in keeping my little business running smoothly - Dubsado.*
Now when I say tool, you could think of, say, a can opener or a power saw, and Dubsado is most certainly the latter.
So what is Dubsado? Dubsado is a client management system that seamlessly puts together client inquiries, intake forms (they call these questionnaires), service selections (they call these proposals), contracts, invoicing, and scheduling.
Do you struggle with getting contracts signed, consults scheduled, or invoices paid? Dubsado can significantly lighten your load, allowing you to automate your workflows. The path from scheduling a consult, filling an intake form, selecting a package, signing a contract, and paying an invoice can all flow automatically.
Do you spend significant time crafting emails that essentially say the same thing again and again? Dubsado's canned email feature can save you a ton of time. You still have the option to customize and edit before one goes out, but having a blueprint to follow can be an amazing help.
Do you want to keep all your client information organized and easily accessible no matter where you are? Dubsado makes that possible keeping all client emails, forms, appointments, and payments together in one tidy and easy to navigate client file. I love that I can access it on the go, no matter where I am, making it easy to pull up my appointment schedule, a client's preferences for in-home overnight support, and more.
Do you want to streamline communication with your clients and make it easy for them to access all client materials? You guessed it - Dubsado does that, too. The client portal feature give clients a clean, professional user interface to represent your brand.
That said, Dubsado does require some time and effort on your part to set up forms and workflows - but these are infinitely customizable so they can truly reflect your brand. And, they offer tutorials as well as extremely responsive customer service, so if you find yourself a bit confused, help is just a chat box away.
Want to give it a whirl? When you sign up, Dubsado let's you experiment with three client leads for FREE without a time limit. That means you can take your time setting things up and exploring the platform before you commit. And, when you are ready, you can use my affiliate code nestedmama to save 20%.
All in all, Dubsado let's me spend less time on the mundane business aspects and MORE time with client support - and isn't that what we all want in the end?
*This post includes affiliate links for Dubsado.
Are you a prospective doula looking for information on training and certification? Head here for more info!
Sometimes, early pregnancy can feel really lonely.
You've taken a test. Maybe you feel elated. Maybe you feel overwhelmed. Maybe you feel worried. Maybe you feel all those things and more - all at once.
Ooof. It's a lot.
Do you wish you could talk to someone and be completely honest about all these feelings, someone who really gets it?
Enter Prenatal Doula Support for early pregnancy.
The first trimester of any pregnancy can be hard as hormones increase dramatically and the pregnant person's body experiences changes. Add in other factors like previous experiences with loss, fertility challenges, pregnancy that came sooner (or much later) than expected, big feelings from a previous pregnancy or birth, or any number of things, and these early days and weeks can feel tremendously hard.
Here at Nested Mama you'll find Prenatal Doula support designed with you in mind. Online packages offer emotional and informational support no matter where you are, and if you are local to me, you can pair this with In-Home visits when you need a helping hand.
Jones, Catherine and Rose Ann Hudson. Eating for Pregnancy: Your Essential Month-by-Month Nutrition Guide and Cookbook. 3rd ed. New York: De Capo Press, 2019.
Recipes in the early months include ingredients targeted to ease the difficulties of nausea, too, which can be helpful when the thought of deciding what to eat feels much harder than it should. In addition to this middle recipe section, the book includes introductory chapters on prenatal nutrition as well as a discussion of eating, breastfeeding, and postpartum weight loss.
There is much to appreciate about what Jones and Hudson offer in this weighty book. When we found out we were having our first child, it inspired us to take a serious look at our eating habits and learn more about optimal nutrition and how we could make that more of a priority for our family. I love that the recipe section includes easy to read labeling for those looking for gluten-free meals or vegan meals or several other dietary concerns.
Though this newest edition advertises itself as "completely revised and updated," the discussion of alcohol and breastfeeding could use an evidence-based update. And, in the discussion of the difficulties of life after baby, more talk of reaching out for professional help if possible would make this book even more comprehensive. I do note, however, that having a chapter on postpartum mental health in this nutrition book was unexpected and much appreciated!
If you are a reader who has a history of disordered eating or struggles with body image, I would caution against the opening and closing sections of the book. With its emphasis on calorie discussion and "ideal" weight gain, the early chapters may be less rather than more helpful for some readers. Similarly, the discussion of dieting in the later chapters, while gentle, still uses a lot of the mainstream language common in diet culture and may be triggering for some readers.
If you'd like a helping hand exploring new recipes and emphasizing whole food habits as you gestate your sweet babe, the thoughtful month-by-month layout of this book may work well for you. But, please be gentle to yourself and understanding of your own relationship with food as you approach the opening and closing sections of the book.
Looking for more evidence-based info as you prepare for birth and baby? Nested Mama offers a full range of classes including childbirth education, breastfeeding, infant sleep education, and planning for postpartum.
Johanna received a Ph.D. in English in 2014. Now a postpartum doula and educator of childbirth, breastfeeding, and infant sleep, she blogs about pregnancy, birth, postpartum, and parenting.