Productivity Simplified

I read a post recently where the author said…’The whole goal of improving your productivity is to reach the point where you never have to think about how to be more productive.”

OK, in my book, not so much.

The whole goal of improving your productivity isn’t to be just more productive.

For me, the goal is to get what you want and need out of life without all the stress.

It’s repeatedly practicing the right behaviors and turning them into awesome habits.  It automates decision making, speeds up actions and generally makes it easier and less stressful to get to what you need and want to be doing.

The end game? To be able to painlessly reallocate the time you have—so you can do anything you want.

Just a thought.

What Do You Want?

Remember when you work with a time management coach, trainer, consultant, or guru your work together is NOT about your…

systems

processes

concerns

habits

styles

delayed decision making

the confidence to get any of it done

…or anything else you can think of or name

It’s about getting to what you WANT in life.

That thing that gets you up in the morning.

That thing that keeps you going til late at night.

That thing that makes you smile.

Because without knowing what you want the distractions are many and you end up going in many directions…none of which get you to what you want.

But without owning it, you’re like a rudderless ship. You just kinda sit in the big ocean…waiting….for something different or someone to save you.

You save yourself by remaining focused on your ‘why’.

So…what do you want in life?

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.

And..

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?