I’ve been writing about emotional labor for years. When I was married, the load that I carried in my mind each and every minute of each and every day was legitimately intolerable – but guess what? Being a single mom is…well, it’s not worse, exactly, because there’s one fewer person whose needs I have to keep track of, but it’s also not better. I still have to maintain a constant and ongoing list in my head consisting of approximately ten thousand tasks per child (and a few for me). And the pets. And the house. And the self-care (hahahahaha).
And! Did I mention I’m moving? I’m moving! (Yes, again, and we’ll discuss; I’m going to be putting up before and afters that I think will be super fun.)
You know what moving is?
A FULL-TIME JOB.
When we add that to my parent-job and my job-jobs, I am overwhelmed.
Which brings me to a recent discovery that – I swear to you – changed my life. As in, makes a tangible and significant difference in my mental health and general happiness situation every. single. day.
There’s this brand-new company called Duckbill – it’s officially launching Wednesday, which is why you haven’t heard about it yet (Ramshackle Glam, breaking the news!). You will definitely be hearing about it, though, because what this company does is function as an endlessly helpful partner who never gets annoyed at you. Basically, it’s a personal assistant service that combines extremely capable humans and extremely advanced AI so as to be able to offer both phenomenally helpful results (not bot-type results at ALL) while being totally affordable, especially since you can sign up for packages that assist multiple family members.
I can hear you being skeptical. I was skeptical, too – outsourcing is not something I’m usually comfortable with, and I’m pretty particular about results. I couldn’t imagine how, for example, the service would be able to provide me with results comparable to what I’d come up with if I did the task on my own, especially for more complex tasks like, say, inquiring with a mortgage company about a rate increase. So I decided to try it out for a month to see if it really did work as well as the website says.
It’s so much better.
Here is a sampling of just some of the work I’ve outsourced, with results as top-quality as if I’d hired an actual, supremely capable, personal assistant to sit next to me all day:
- Cancel gym membership that I have not used for over a year
- Extend payment deadline for traffic ticket
- Input kids’ schedules (minimum days, holidays, soccer games, etc) into my calendar
- Figure out why TF my mortgage payment increased for no apparent reason
- Call Black & Decker to get tech support for an appliance
- Fill hard-to-find prescriptions (they even arranged for a courier to bring the medication to my house, saving me a 45-minute drive to the closest pharmacy that had what I needed, WHAT)
- Find estate planning attorney and schedule appointment
- Find affordable tennis instructor
- Call Home Depot to confirm terms of credit card
Oh, and since I’m moving? I also requested help with these items:
- Set up utilities at new house
- Cancel utilities at old house
- Set up internet appointment at new house
- Provide quotes for furniture delivery
- Arrange furniture delivery
- Assist with mail forwarding
Each of these tasks was something I was dreading. Waiting on hold, sourcing options, inputting schedules…all of this stuff takes up SO MUCH TIME in my day (and in yours), and I hate doing it, and it gets in the way of all the stuff that I/you either need to do (like the aforementioned chauffeuring, or, say, work) or just want to do (tennis lessons with my son!). Now? I leave the site – it’s also an app – open on my desktop all day long, and whenever a task occurs to me I just put it in, go back to what I was doing, and wait for the magic to happen.
I cannot stress enough the extent to which Duckbill has been a total life-changer, both in terms of what I can get done in a day and in terms of lessening the mental load. I recommend the service wholeheartedly, and after just three weeks I can’t imagine going without it. Sooooooo…I asked the company if they’d be up for providing a code for one month gratis personal assistant service so you can experience what this kind of freedom from emotional labor is like. And they agreed.
It’s magical. Try it.
Use code RAMSHACKLE for one free month of Duckbill personal assistant services, and get ready to have your life change, too.