Getting Things Done & Email Productivity

David Allen believes he mastered the art of Getting Things Done.  In his book, he puts forward some valuable tips.  One in particular is how to handle email.  Before I outline his email process, however, I will explain his philosophy regarding stress free productivity.  As I applied several of his techniques, my own stress decreased, and that is a great feeling.

Allen explains that  when we juggle multiple projects, jobs, personal responsibilities, and household chores we can become overwhelmed by “loose ends.”  Continue reading

Morning & Night Routines for Success

I am a huge advocate for “setting the stage.”  What I mean by this is organizing yourself and the objects around you to make your life easier and to support success.  When dealing with big projects, this means drawing up a plan and figuring out how best to tackle it.  Another example of setting the stage is the commonly taught approach to writing a paper – research, capture notes, organize information into content groups and then compile them into a single document. Continue reading

Think and Grow Rich: Leadership Attributes

In Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill, explains what he considers to be the major qualities all strong leaders must possess.  I outline these eleven characteristics below with my interpretation of what each means.  Before we get to that, I want to highlight a specific quote from the book which explains what I consider to be the most foundational quality of all leadership.  Hill writes, “Most great leaders began in the capacity of followers.  They became great leaders because they were intelligent followers.  With few exceptions, the man who cannot follow a leader intelligently, cannot become an efficient leader.  The man who can follow a leader most efficiently is usually the man who develops into leadership most rapidly.” Continue reading

5 Difficult People & How to Handle Them

Ages ago I read a book called Fish! A Remarkable Way to Boost Morale and Improve Results, and it imparted on me the idea of a toxic energy dump.  For me a toxic energy dump is a place where, or moment when, the interactions with others leave you feeling like you took a nosedive from a high energy level to a low energy level.  In life, I find there are certain people who dump their bad mojo on me, quickly leaving me in a worse state of mind.  This needs to be addressed because the loss of energy hampers motivation and can lead to a pattern of poor thinking that robs you of happiness and contentment. Continue reading

Difference Between Reasons & Excuses

Last week I posted an article on how success can make others feel mediocre.  I started by sharing a list of excuses I made for not achieving my weight loss goals after seeing a colleague’s weight loss success.  This got me thinking about excuses.  I recall a conversation with a friend I felt also made a lot of excuses and once challenged this behavior by asking him why he spent so much energy coming up with excuses when it would probably be more enjoyable for him to take action.  In response he told me that he was not giving excuses but rather reasons and that I should know the difference. Continue reading

Success Can Make Others Feel Mediocre

A colleague of mine lost a lot of weight.  She changed how she eats, how she exercises and many other aspects of her daily life to accomplish this goal.  Two things happened when I saw her for the first time in a couple of years.  First, I was blown away by the dramatic change and so happy for her because she looked healthy and was proud of herself.  Second, I felt bad about my own weight issues which I mentioned briefly in this post.  How is it that she lost over a hundred pounds and I struggle with thirty!?  Continue reading

Introvert’s Guide to Networking

Introversion is a popular topic lately, and I appreciate that since I am an introvert.  When I started down the business and leadership track, I realized that I had to disregard my natural introverted tendencies and be willing to jump into networking events.  These events exhausted me and I dreaded lengthy work trips where I was expected to attend more than two events in a single week. Continue reading