Busy On the Outside. Busy On the Inside.

Busy on the outside

Go to work

Go to the gym

Go to class

Family events

Friend events

Run errands

Help a friend

Add your own…

Busy on the inside…

Make that deadline

Plan the week

I don’t want to…

I don’t have to…

I don’t need to…

I want to…

I have to…

I need to…

I can’t…

I won’t…

I’ll never get it all done

Add your own…

Stressful all this ‘busyness’, isn’t it?

There will always be more to do than there is time to do it. Pick the most important one and do it. Feel the stress start to melt.


There will always be self-talk that starts…or stops…us in our tracks. It’s also stressful. It’s holding you hostage. Replace it with positive self-talk and watch the magic happen.

Thank You for Your Time

jose-balartJose Diaz-Balart is a news anchor on NBC who usually fills in for Lester Holt. They are both ‘my kinda journalists’ because they report the facts without all the fanfare.

But the thing I love about Mr. Balart is the way he signs off from his broadcasts. He always says…

This is it for NBC nightly news, I’m Jose Diaz-Balart, thank you for the privilege of your time.

It struck me the first time I heard it and I’ve never forgotten it. I remember it because honestly he acknowledges that our time is limited and we chose to give up some of it to listen to him and his broadcast. When is the last time someone thanked you for your time (and in such an eloquent way!)?

I can only say I wish I had thought of it first…I would have been using it for the past 25 years! But I’m workin’ on it…

Thanks for taking time to read my blog. I’m grateful for your interest.

Super Bowl and Life

super-bowlThe priest at my church is very big picture, innovative and deeply committed person. In his sermon a couple weeks ago he used an analogy between the Super Bowl and…our faith. Personally, I couldn’t wait to hear it because it sounded so novel (note the ‘innovative’ listed above) and I wasn’t disappointed.

He broke out the Super Bowl approach into 3 parts:

  • The Game – The game itself–and I would argue the ads as well–are something you look forward to. It’s a ritual. It’s an annual event. It’s fun in the making. There’s a winner and unfortunately a loser, but you get ready and anticipate this every year.
  • The Reward – The reward is there not so much to sell us something but to ‘shape what we value’.  I mean, think about. What are considered the best Super Bowl games or even ads? Generally the ones where our team or our favorite ad  (think Budweiser ads with the kids, puppies and clydesdales) wins the evening because it spoke to what we wanted, liked, or believed in . Fair enough.
  • The Entertainment – The value of entertainment is to take a minute and celebrate the game and perhaps the halftime show. Wow. Look at this. Look at that. Have you ever seen anything like that before or since…?  You get the idea. It’s new. It’s different. It’s fun.

The more I thought about this analogy, the more I realized it’s a bit like what we do when we decide to change something in our lives for the better. In my line of work that could mean overcoming procrastination or getting organized or any other of the habits developed over time that have challenged your daily 24 hours and peace of mind. It might look something like this:

  • The Game – Perhaps you want to change a habit ( let’s say…procrastination) that hasn’t served you in the past and this is the year you’ve decided to tackle that. You’re committed. You have a plan. Your game is to work on your plan until your new habit becomes part of your life rather than feeling like it’s something additional you have to do or practice. Once your new habit is incorporated into your life without a lot of thought or struggle you win the game. Now it’s time for the reward.


  • The Reward – You came. You saw. You conquered.  With a plan in mind and a focus towards change, you’ve become a better version of yourself. With hard work, determination and a cheering section you experience the fruits of your labor and victory is sweet. And a big part of the reason it’s so sweet is that it’s something you probably always valued, wanted or admired to begin with, but kept wondering if you’d ever be able to change. But you made it — so now it’s time for some entertainment.


  • The Entertainment – OK…now it’s time to celebrate all the ways your life has improved. And, I might add, the lives of others. You experience less stress, less negative self-talk and more positive emotions in your day to day life. And think of the all the family, friends and even colleagues who are happy for you because you created a better path for yourself.Celebrate.

Why not start right now?


‘Hope is Not a Strategy’ is the name of a book I haven’t read.

But for years I’ve said the title is my absolute all-time favorite.

Because having a better future (2017?) won’t happen if you simply hope for it.

Or wish for it

Or dream of it.

It involves seeing what you want and being motivated to go after it. Owning your vision. If you don’t do this, then pick another thing to go after.

Then figure out the different ways you can get it.

Then pick the most effective way.

Then do something every day to get there. Even if only for 5 minutes.

That’s how all of us get to our goals. One step at a time.

Now get moving!


Design Your Time

clock 2I thought this post was interesting because it refers to ‘designing’ your time, rather than ‘managing’ it.

Because we all know that we don’t manage time…it’s still 24 hours a day, no more, no less.

What we really manage are our decisions about how and where we spend our 24 hours.

The post refers to breaking tasks into quadrants and I’m a big fan of that.  And perhaps there are a few other things mentioned that aren’t new…because there really isn’t anything new in time management….except our tools and how we use them.

So take a minute, read the post, and see if you can design something that helps you begin to design the day-week-month-year-life you want!

Motivation and Environment

motivation 2I’ve started exercising and watching my food…again. 3 other friends were interested in doing the same thing so we started a private group online.

Today I ran across this post entitled Motivation is overvalued. Environment often matters more.

The 3 things the author lists under ‘How to  design a better environment’ are spot on.

So I have…

  • Automated – Anything and everything requiring decision points.
  • Removed whatever physical roadblocks existed  – Lay my clothes out the night before and found the closest gym .
  • Planned – Got organized about measuring progress (a Fitbit, My Fitness Plan app, etc.).

Works like a charm.

You can take a similar path when it comes to improving your productivity. Ya just gotta wanna!

Why not start now?!