Tag Archives: procrastination

Overwhelmed by your day?

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I often advocate to clients they plan out their day. It asserts ourselves as the creator, rather than the slave to our circumstances.

Set a clear intention of purpose, then schedule the actions that support that purpose with a responsibility to estimating accurately how much time you’ll need for these actions.

 Life will happen. Circumstances will assert themselves — an unexpected phone call, a traffic jam, a mistake in an appointment time — brings a need to shift your plans. That sense of purpose for your day can help you remain steady, as you recalibrate and recommit to your intention.

And sometimes, even with or circumstances handled, we find internal obstacles to living our purpose in a day. We need to open to something bigger than ourselves to guide us to our purpose and allow our creativity to to find the tangible actions to support that purpose.

I love this quote from artist, Jen Gray. Practicing spiritual time management is sometimes just what’s needed to cut through the overwhelm of deadlines, obligations, conflicts, vagueness, lack of motivation, or procrastination.

sparkledust

“…the only thing i had to be concerned with was
doing the next single thing that would align myself
with love and spirit.”
jen gray

If you find yourself on a rainy day, whether it’s external or internal weather, ask yourself, “What is the one single thing I could do now that would align myself with love and spirit?”

If you can go outside and be in nature, when you ask the question, see if it doesn’t deepen the response you get back.

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Trust the answer, even if you can’t see beyond the next action. Sometimes we baby-step our way with faith back into clarity.

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Schedule time, not tasks: words of wisdom from Harold Taylor

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Harold Taylor, renowned time management authority, has this to say…..

I have always recommended that people schedule more time than they think a task will take to allow for unavoidable interruptions. But you could feel stressed and out of control if you still don’t get the task completed. To prevent this, change your mindset. Schedule time to work on a task rather than the task itself. The expectation then becomes to spend one hour or 90 minutes each day (or week) until the task is finished. This way you can’t fail. But it’s important to schedule these chunks of time as far as possible in advance of the deadline.” – Harold Taylor

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I think finding a “time management” system needs to be a lot more customized than any space organizing system. It’s really an inside-out job that requires the commitment of a lifestyle. Think about it, if you’re overwhelmed by the clutter in your home, you can always escape to Starbucks, or a hotel room. You carry your time management with you wherever you go. Here are some resources to peak your curiosity about how you tick (pun intended).

Daily PlanIt

Updated 6/20/11

There are many great sites dedicated to exploring ways to use time well. Here are my top favorites. For these and more, go to my del.icio.us bookmarks list.

  • Lifehack — Daily digest and pointers on productivity, getting things done and lifehacks. Keep an eye on what Chris Brogan is up to-he’s an incredibly creative guy who writes regularly at Lifehack.org among other things
  • DIYPlanner-Paper, productivity and passion
  • David Seah-the Printable CEO
  • 43Folders-about personal productivity, life hacks, and simple ways to make your life a little better
  • Matt’s Idea Blog-Original thoughts on productivity, personal information management, creativity, journaling, personal digital storage for life, and leveraging technology for citizenship.
  • LifeDev-new. interesting.
  • Make It Great!-Lifehacks from Phil Gerbyshak
  • Productivity Goal, which is “a discussion about work productivity, time management organization, tools and tips.”
  • Productivity Pro-Helping people leave the office earlier, with less…

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“The maxim, “Nothing prevails but perfection,” may be spelled PARALYSIS.”
― Winston Churchill

celebrate

Whatever it looks like, CELEBRATE.

Only with acceptance, can we shift.

 

 

Perfectly Imperfect

Find Your Routine

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Being organized requires some level of maintenance –regardless of your brain type or style. Dread of decluttering or organizing can lead to procrastination or paralysis for some.

Twyla Tharp wrote a beautiful book on creativity: The Creative Habit, Learn It and Use It for Life. To me, it speaks so keenly to the trouble we often have waiting OUTSIDE a process — she names the creative process. I see it easily translates into the decluttering/organizing process. For each, we must find our own flow, our own rhythm, our own dialogue through the decision-making process inherent in each.

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Here is a quote from her book. I will list it twice, once verbatim, and a second time, substituting words to describe the decluttering/organizing process.

“In the end, there is no one ideal condition for creativity. What works for one person is useless for another. The only criterion is this: Make it easy on yourself. Find a working environment where the prospect of wrestling with your muse doesn’t scare you, doesn’t shut you down. It should make you want to be there, and once you find it, stick with it. To get the creative habit, you need a working environment that’s habit-forming.

All preferred working states, no matter how eccentric, have one thing in common, they impel you to get started. Whether it’s the act of carrying a hot coffee mug to an outdoor porch, or the rock ‘n’ roll that gets a painter revved up to splash color on a canvas…moving inside each of these routines gives you no choice but to do something. It’s Pavlovian: follow the routine, get a creative payoff.”  The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life, p. 17-18

And now with substitutions:

“In the end, there is no one ideal condition for [decluttering or organizing]. What works for one person is useless for another. The only criterion is this: Make it easy on yourself. Find a working environment where the prospect of wrestling with your [clutter/mail/schedule] doesn’t scare you, doesn’t shut you down. It should make you want to be there, and once you find it, stick with it. To get the [organizing] habit, you need a working environment that’s habit-forming.

All preferred working states, no matter how eccentric, have one thing in common, they impel you to get started. Whether it’s the act of carrying a hot coffee mug to an outdoor porch, or the rock ‘n’ roll that gets a painter revved up to splash color on a canvas…moving inside each of these routines gives you no choice but to do something. It’s Pavlovian: follow the routine, get a [clarity] payoff.”  The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life, p. 17-18

Books for ADD/ADHD

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Here are some resources for learning about and coping with adult ADD:

read

ADD-Friendly Ways to Organize Your Life, Judith Kolberg & Kathleen Nadeau, PH.D.

Women with Attention Deficit Disorder, Sari Solden, MS, MFCC

Healing ADD: The Breakthrough Program that Allows You to See and Heal the 6 Types of ADD, Daniel G. Amen, M.D.

Driven to Distraction: Recognizing and Coping with Attention Deficit Disorder from Childhood through Adulthood, Edward M. Hallowell, M.D. and John J. Ratey

You Mean I’m Not Not Lazy, Stupid or Crazy?!; A Self-Help Book for Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder, Kate Kelly and Peggy Ramundo

Website:

ADDitude: Living Well with Attention Deficit

Procrastination…

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…draining; habitual; perpetual. Uggh.

There are some mornings I don’t want to get out of bed. I want to pull the covers up and make it all go away. That’s the feeling. And if I breathe into the feeling and trust….I often discover that it’s not “all” of it I want to go away, just one particularly dreadful daunting task I’d rather be tied down to the railroad tracks facing an oncoming train that tackle.

It’s often a phone call, or an email to a difficult person, or one in which I have to confess I was in the wrong – one, perhaps,  in which I might encounter conflict, embarrassment or shame. Often, when I just handle the task, I’m free. Free to live the rest of my day productively and peacefully. If I procrastinate, the fear, the resistance, the weight of the task drags me down, and nothing good gets done.

When I get up in the morning, I ask: What’s “first things first” today? What one thing can I accomplish early that will give me the freedom and sense of esteem I’m looking for to have my day turn out?” When I find it, I sometimes need some extra courage. I may make a phone call to a trusted friend to let them know what I’m about to do. It’s a chance to own my responsibility as well as the feelings it brings up. I then may make a call on the other side of the task to say “I did it”, share what I got from the experience and celebrate the accomplishment. We call these points of contact before and after a difficult task “book-ending“.

Brian Tracy, in his book by the same title, advocates taking on the daunting task first thing, as “Eat That Frog.” Your onerous task, may feel like having to eat a frog. If you let the frog sit around on the plate all day, it’s pretty tough to focus on anything else. Eating it first gets it over with. There are some times we just need to gather our courage and get it out of the way!