Okay – raise of hands… how many of you have been told that the way to get ahead in your business is to automate as much as possible?
I can’t tell you how many people are shocked to hear that, as a systems expert, I still do quite a bit of work manually. Sound like a contradiction? Not if you zoom out a little.
Automation is a great way to share the burden of your workload with tools and apps. However, unless done thoughtfully, too much automation can cause some serious problems for you. There’s a sneaky little trap hiding in automation and if you aren’t looking for it, you’ll end up in a pretty big hole.
Continue reading “3 Ways Automation Can Hurt Your Business”
Keeping our inboxes organized can be a bit of a nightmare. If you’re like me, your inbox is an extension of your task list, which makes everything a bit harder to keep straight. With the constant flood of messages, it’s hard to have insight into what you need to do, what you’ve responded to, and what’s important.
The key to optimizing an inbox is using the tools at your disposal to making it work for you – and therefore, eliminating some work!
If your inbox is a little out of control, I recommend starting with using these three labels/categories to give you visibility into what’s in store for you.
Continue reading “3 Inbox Labels You Need to Use”
Daylight Saving is upon us once again – causing great confusion across the nation. Time change trips up even the most experienced world-traveler and international business professional. This crash course will give you the basics of getting your bearings as the time changes and never mess up scheduling a meeting again.
This post focuses on time change in the United States.
Would you rather watch a video on this instead? Great! Click here to catch the video on YouTube.
Standard versus Daylight Time
First and foremost, it’s important to understand the difference between standard and daylight time – and it’s completely counterintuitive.
Continue reading “Your Time Change Crash Course”
One of the biggest pain points with organization that has a significant impact on our productivity is the existence of piles. And when I say piles, I mean both physical and digital piles. For example, stacks of mail, unpacked boxes, unread email, a full but clean dishwasher. Things pile up and suddenly getting through the pile is no longer a task – it’s a project.
I offer a number of tools to help you work through the piles (have you checked out Detox Your Inbox?!) but let’s talk about how you stop piles from starting in the first place.
All you need to know is three little words…
Continue reading “Staying Organized with the One-Touch Rule”
Have you ever been in a meeting and while you do your best to focus on the content, you can’t help but think of all the other things floating around in your life? Or someone’s comment puts a thought in your mind and you find yourself stuck on it? Sure you have!
It’s always the most random stuff too. Did you ever hear back from that person? You’re out of laundry detergent. Someone recommended a book and it reminded you of that other book you bought and have been meaning to read.
While a simple concept, ensuring you always have a parking lot ready will capture all those random thoughts and keep you present where you need to be.
What is a Parking Lot?
Continue reading “Maintaining Focus with a Parking Lot”
I wish I read more.
I think this a few times a week as I try to balance all the aspects of my life. I love reading and probably fall above average for my reading time, but still… I wish I read more.
Turns out, I’m not not alone. According to this article, Reading More is one of the Top 10 New Year’s Resolutions made by well-wishers. Whether we want to read more for professional or personal reasons, somehow we seem to be falling short of our desire.
How do we fix that?
Well, I have seven tips to increase your reading consumption without overwhelming your schedule.
Continue reading “7 Tips for Reading More”
Creating new habits is a struggle for almost every person on the planet. Have you ever met anyone who said, “I wanted to do this…and so I did. Boom! I’m perfect.”? No? Neither have I.
If you are this unicorn, I’d love to meet you!
For the rest of us, habit building is a constant cycle of start, joy, frustration, stopping, and restarting. Even if the new habit is small, like a skincare routine. Why?!
Well, because you’re rewiring your brain, that’s why! If changing or creating new habits was easy, we’d all be perfectly fit, kind, organized, productive, skilled, fabulous people.
However, there are two main reasons we fail on the path of creating or changing habits:
- We’re aiming too big/broad.
- We’re focusing on the end characteristic – not the behavior.
Let’s explore this a little more.
Continue reading “The Art of Creating New Habits that Stick”
Call it whatever you want – on some level we all experience some level of guilt around our jobs, especially if our work is particularly demanding. Today, there’s a focused emphasis on “Mom Guilt” but the reality is that dads experience it, caregivers experience it, married people experience it, single people experience it. Unfortunately, the guilt is real for most workers.
Why is guilt so prevalent in our society? First, it’s important to note that this guilt is nothing new. We’re just talking about it more – and making more memes about it. However, due to the climbing cost of living, we have more people in the workforce who are working longer hours to make ends meet, which is resulting in less time at home with our loved ones. Also, technology, while wonderful, is keeping us perpetually connected to both work and home, stretching our attention to full life awareness at all times. We’re hyperaware of all the things we aren’t doing and all the people we aren’t spending time with.
Work Guilt can be overwhelming and lead to emotionality, rash decisions, and mental breakdowns. While you may not be able to change the circumstances around the core of the work guilt (if you have to work, you have to work), there are ways we can manage how we feel.
Continue reading “How to Handle Work Guilt”
Self-awareness is all the rage lately. Emotional IQ training. Meditation. Journaling. We’ve made self-awareness trendy.
And that’s not a bad thing.
Slowing down to figure out how we are affecting the world around us is more productive and expected as we interact with each other.
I learned the Left-Hand Column Exercise years ago at my first full time job and it’s been a valuable tool for me over the years. Whether a tense verbal conversation with a coworker or customer or an uncomfortable interaction that you can’t quite put your finger on why it was awkward, this exercise will help you identify factors you may not have noticed or considered before.
Continue reading “Increase Your Self-Awareness with the Left-Hand Column Exercise”
Planning an event for your company or business can be an insanely overwhelming. The sheer number of details can trip planners up. However, have no fear – there is a method to the madness. You just need to have some insight and help.
Whether putting together an all-day meeting or holiday party, the tips below will set you on the right path to hosting a successful event.
Have a clear purpose and audience for the event.
The first step in any event planning is getting clear about the purpose of gathering everyone and defining who needs to be in attendance. The purpose and audience dictate the rest of the planning parameters, including venue, budget, meals, and materials needed.
Continue reading “10 Tips for Planning a Successful Event”