Learn to Stop to Keep Going

by ianmckenzie on April 17, 2014

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Imagine getting behind the wheel of your car and driving continuously, without any thought to refueling or maintenance. It would run along for a while, but sooner or later something would bring the car to a halt.

To keep a car going, you need to stop it periodically. Frequent stops are needed to add fuel. Less frequent stops are needed for maintenance and repair. Neglecting these stops will soon turn a new car into a pile of scrap metal.

It’s amazing how many people don’t see that same principle at work in their life. There are limits to what anyone can accomplish without taking breaks. These stops are necessary on every level of capacity:

  • physical
  • emotional
  • psychological
  • spiritual

If you’re looking to keep moving forward in a focused and productive fashion, you need to have some space in your schedule.

Stop

  • Put aside a little time every day to plan what you’re going to do.
  • Put aside a little time every week to review your outstanding commitments and organize them for the following week.
  • Put aside time once or twice a year to review your goals and dreams, and why they are important to you.

Anticipate

  • Things are going to go wrong, or at least different than we anticipated. Knowing that you have a plan in place can help you pick up the pieces and keep moving forward.

Set your attitude

  • Our attitude is a result of deliberate action. We choose the ways we respond to difficulties in our lives. That’s not to say that some situations are going to be more difficult than others, but there are ways to maintain a positive mental attitude.

Focus

  • Discern what your skills and strengths are.
  • Say yes to those you are confident you can complete with excellence.
  • Say no to everything else.

Energize

Each person’s down time needs to suit themselves.

What are some of the things you do to refuel, re-charge and repair? Leave a comment.

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Use Lists to Manage Your Life

by ianmckenzie on April 15, 2014

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My wife is the queen of lists. She uses an iPHone 4s and can, a swipe and a couple of taps, pull up whatever information she needs to plan her next action. For example, she uses SplashShopper to track all our shopping lists. If we pop into Home Depot to pick up a gallon of paint, she checks to see what other hardware items we might need, saving a second trip. She has lists of gift ideas, quotes for greeting cards, honey-do’s and much more.

Lists are the simplest tool or system for managing your life. They consolidate all your tasks in one place. They can tickle your memory or stimulate your creativity. Lists can be as simple or as complex as you need.

You can read lists that give insight into who we are in the Sasha Cagen book, To-Do List: From Buying Milk to Finding a Soul Mate, What Our Lists Reveal About Us.

Here is a quick outline of some of the lists you can keep:

  • Reference
    • Dates
      • Birthday
      • Anniversary
    • Personal information
    • Account information
    • Action
      • To-do
      • Bills to pay
      • Projects
      • Communication
      • Planning
      • Context-based
    • Shopping
      • Groceries
      • Clothing
      • Household
      • Gifts
    • Ideas

    What are some of the lists you use?

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Control your body language for effective communication

April 11, 2014
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Communicating effectively means more than knowing what to say and when to say it. Communication involves the subtle signals your body language sends to those listening. Over half of the information you provide  as you connect with others comes from your body language. Some body language provides positive information and some negative information. Positive bodylanguage says, “I am interested in what you are saying.” Negative body language says, “I don’t believe anything you [...]

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How to Automate Evernote

April 8, 2014
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or… “Put Evernote on Autopilot, Save Boat Loads of Time and Make Your Life Easier (and More Organized)!” If you’re really using Evernote to “remember everything,” you know that you need to be diligent in getting your stuff into Evernote. There are a few built-in features to speed-up the process: a dedicated e-mail addressing for [...]

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How to Keep a Time Log

April 1, 2014
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One of the simplest time-management tools is a daily time log. By selecting a typical week and gathering data on your daily routine, you can find areas where you could improve your use of time. Instructions For Keeping Daily Time Log Gather Data: Keep a daily time log for one week. This will provide accurate information for you [...]

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Outline of time management principles

March 28, 2014
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I’ve yet to find a pithy quip that summarizes time management. Until that time, here’s my outline of time management principles. Identify time over which you have control Set systems for routine tasks Use technology Make best use of the 80/20 rule Identify and use your energy cycle High energy tasks scheduled during high-energy peaks Save less [...]

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Life lessons from a dog

March 12, 2014
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  There’s lots we can learn from a dog about living a good life. Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joy-ride. Get the most out of the experience of fresh air and wind in your face When family members come home, always run to greet them. Be obedient; when it’s in your best [...]

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3 Quick Steps to Preventing Clutter

February 24, 2014
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If you want to prevent clutter, you have to be preemptive. Before you add an item to your home, office, yard, workspace, etc., ask yourself three questions. Are you going to use it? The gadget looks like the latest in efficiency tools. You buy it, you get it home, you use it once and it’s now [...]

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5 Tips for Effective Phone Management

February 21, 2014
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The telephone has been a part of our lives for so long we probably don’t even think of it as technology. The telephone is a great communication tool. However, just like any other technology or toll, the telephone has to be used properly to be effective.  Here are some ways to manage your telephone use: [...]

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How to Love Your Job

February 20, 2014
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How to love your job [Infographic] by the team at Adecco  

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