|Posted on July 23, 2011 at 4:48 AM||comments (0)|
"Motions are the precursors of emotions. Renowned psychologist Dr. George Crane writes in his book Applied Psychology that you can't control your emotions directly. They are controlled only through your choice of motions and actions. So the secret is not to focus on getting rid of negative emotions, but rather to focus on going through the desired “motions” you set out to do every day, whether it’s working, exercising, or doing a kind deed. If you do, I promise you’ll soon be feeling more desirable “emotions.”
I want to end this post with a little poem I wrote. It’s a great reminder for me when I encounter difficult emotions. Here it goes:
If you don’t feel like getting up in the morning, get up anyway.
If you don’t feel appreciated and loved, give your best anyway.
If you feel hurt and angry, forgive anyway.
If feel afraid or worried, take action anyway.
If you don’t feel like smiling, smile anyway.
If you feel like it’s going to be a bad day, make it a good one anyway."
|Posted on July 20, 2011 at 9:08 PM||comments (0)|
1. Make a list
Getting organized begins with one fundamental tool—a list. Lists can help you feel more in control of your life and help you remember what needs to get done. Buy a little notebook and carry it around with you so it’s always easy to refer to. Enjoy the sense of accomplishment when you cross even one item off the list.
2. Focus on what really matters
Make a list of the priorities that need to get done today---not tomorrow or a month from now. It’s okay to let the house get a little messy or let your emails pile up for a day or two. Tackle what absolutely cannot wait first.
3. Break things down into smaller steps
If a task seems overwhelming, break it down into more manageable, specific goals. Telling yourself you need to “lose 10 pounds” isn’t specific enough about how you’re going to get there. Set smaller goals in short-term increments, like walking three times for an hour in the next week or doing 10 sit-ups each day. By setting baby steps, you’ll be much more likely to accomplish your goal and also be inspired to go further.
4. Put a time limit on yourself
It’s always hardest getting started, but it’s a lot easier to say “I’m going to work on this for 30 minutes starting now.” Then stop. Sometimes, knowing there’s light at the end of the tunnel can get you going—and even help give you the momentum you need to keep going.
5. Eliminate distractions
In this era of immediacy, it’s easy to get side-tracked by a million little things that sap our motivation. If you really need to get something done, turn your phone off. Stop answering emails. Make yourself unavailable. If you’re at work, close your door or put headphones on to make it harder for someone to interrupt you.
|Posted on July 20, 2011 at 8:11 PM||comments (0)|
When you prioritize, you're determining what needs to get done, and in what order you should perform those actions. Very often, one may concentrate on getting lots of easy tasks done. But just because you're crossing off tons of items on your To Do list, doesn't necessarily mean you're completing the important stuff--the tasks that will help you achieve your goals.
1. Look into the future. What do you want out of life? Do you want to play guitar well enough to be able to perform for your children? Do you want to travel the country? Do you want to have a beautiful vegetable garden in your backyard? While it is certainly important to get your day- to-day things done, it's also important to schedule in time for activities that will help you achieve the 'higher level' goals you've set for yourself.
2. Make a Master List. This is simply a long running list of everything you want to accomplish. It's in no particular order, but is essentially a holding place and a reference so you don't forget any activity and so that you're not trying to remember everything that needs to get done.
3. Scan your list and assign A, B or C. Assign each activity one of the following letter codes:
A - Those activities that are important AND urgent and will impact you greatly if you don't accomplish them right way.
B - Those activities that are important to be done, but not urgent. You have time to accomplish them before they have a great impact on your life.
C - Those activities that may be nice to do sometime, but if you don't do them, you wouldn't be terribly disappointed.
4. It's not set in stone. Your letter assignments may change over time. Just because you assign an B priority to one of your activities today, doesn't mean it has to stay a B priority. It may turn into an A priority or a C priority in the future. Use your priority assignments as a guide, but don't be reluctant to change them if the need arises.
5. Focus. Now it's time to focus on just a few activities listed on your Master List. You'll want to include a mixture of activities on your Daily To Do list. I recommend you choose three A priorities, two B priorities and one C priority. So each day, you'll have a total of 6 activities to focus on.
6. Make a schedule. Use a tool, such as the Daily Planner in the Get Organized Now! Easy Organizer, http://www.getorganizednow.com/ezorganizer.html to plan your day. Schedule in time for each of your priorities, leaving some free time throughout your day for getting daily things done (dusting, cooking, etc.) and for rest and relaxation.
7. Early bird or night owl? In general, you'll want to schedule so that you actually get those A priority tasks done, no matter what. I find that if I do my top priority tasks first thing in the morning and get them out of the way, than it's pretty smooth sailing the rest of the day. However, some people are able to better focus in the afternoon or the evening, so A priority tasks are sometimes better left for this time of day for some people. No matter what time of day you choose to focus on your A priorities, be sure you don't allow anything (except dire emergencies) to take over the time you originally scheduled to complete those priorities.
8. If something comes up . . . There are going to be times when you decide to do something in place of the activities you have initially assigned. For instance, the other day I had some activities planned for the afternoon, but a friend called and asked if I wanted to go to a local event with her in town. I weighed my options. I still had one B and one C priority on my list and I knew if I went to the event, that these would not get done today. I decided to meet her at the event, and complete the B priority I had assigned when I returned home afterwards, and I also decided to move the C priority to tomorrow.
Of course, while I do allow for flexibility in my schedule from time to time, I don't make a habit out of doing this.
Most of the time, I stick to getting my priorities accomplished unless something very palatable arises that is important enough to me to push some of my originally assigned activities to tomorrow or another day. Check out dozens of other scheduling tips in my book Finally Organized, Finally Free. Visit: http://www.getorganizednow.com/newbook.html
9. The next day. You'll always want six activities on your Daily To List, again three A priorities, two B priorities and one C priority --or less than 6 if you can never get 6 completed. If you did not accomplish one or more of your priorities from yesterday, those priorities should be on your list the next day--along with other priorities from your Master List to take the place of those priorities that you did manage to accomplish yesterday.
10. Reward yourself. If you follow this system, you will get an enormous amount of important things done, and you'll more easily be able to reach your goals. As you get things done, particularly your A priorities, reward yourself along the way. For instance, you can sprinkle mini rewards throughout your day, such as a walk in the park or an outing with a friend. A more major reward should be enjoyed when you accomplish something big, such as passing a major exam or remodeling a room in your home.