Well Arranged Time

“Well arranged time is the surest mark of a well arranged mind.”

—Sir Isaac Pitman, developer of the Pitman method of Shorthand

Image of a silver pocket watch

Image from Unsplash by Isabella Christina

Time management is almost always one of the top goals of my coaching clients.

They describe their desires with wording such as:

  • Life Balance
  • Stress Reduction
  • Personal Freedom
  • Independence and Autonomy
  • Peace of Mind
  • Spending time and energy on what’s most important
  • Work less and make more

All too frequently the tyranny of the urgent, or the pervasiveness of digital distractions, leaves us stressed and exhausted, with less than stellar results and satisfaction.

EXERCISE:

How can you more fully plan your days and work your plans to realize the life you sincerely desire?

Consider downloading a copy of my Time Management Strategies and Tactics Workbook, to help rearrange your mind and time. Please use the password BarryDemp if prompted to do so.

Shovel While the Piles are Small

“Shovel while the piles are small.”

—Eric Allenbaugh, Leadership Consultant

Image of cars buried in snow

Image from The Star.com

Today’s quote reminded me of the last substantial snow storm here in Michigan. It was over a weekend, and my plan was simply to wait until it stopped (which it didn’t) to handle the 10-12 inches of wet, heavy stuff at one time. I thought that would be efficient.

Unfortunately, my snow blower didn’t take well to the blade-clogging mixture of snow and ice and refused to cooperate. The result was considerable heavy lifting to clear my driveway. I didn’t need to go to the gym for my regular workout after that!

EXERCISE:

What personal or professional priorities are piling up on you and creating stress?

Where would tackling these piles while they are small be the best approach to lightening your load?

I leave my troubles in my clothes

“When I go to bed, I leave my trouble in my clothes.”

—Dutch Proverb

Image of a pile of clothes on a chair

Image from Unsplash by Renata Fraga

Have you ever experienced insomnia?

How often do you literally carry your burdens and troubles to bed, through incessant thinking and rumination about an issue?

Besides being physically tired and mentally fatigued to begin with, you can’t really accomplish anything by letting issues churn in your head through the night. You only add to the stress by loss of the restful sleep you require to take on tomorrow with a full tank and a positive attitude.

EXERCISE:

What bedtime behaviors and rituals could you consider to “leave your troubles in your clothes”?

Consider asking friends and colleagues what works for them, or try searching “sleep strategies” on the web. You’ll be amazed by the volume of content, and the magnitude and impact of this common issue.

keep stillness inside you

“In the midst of movement and chaos, keep stillness inside you.”

—Deepak Chopra, Indian-American New Age Author/Speaker

meme of today's quote

Image from QuoteFancy

What is your current level of stress? How fast is your world moving? How much chaos do you experience in your personal and professional communities?

What strategies do you use to slow things down to find greater calm, and the peace of mind we all seek?

Sadly, the weekend to rest or that vacation we so desperately need to recharge may be days, weeks, even months away.

What can you do at this very moment to keep a source of stillness inside you, to call up and use at a moment’s notice?

EXERCISE:

Check out these links to add new or alternative strategies to your repertoire:

10 Steps to Keep Calm and Carry On

40 ways to achieve peace of mind and inner calm

 

Worries are like Birds

“Worries and tensions are like birds. We cannot stop them from flying near us, but we can certainly stop them from making a nest in our minds.”

—Rishika Jain, rishikajain.com

Image of a woman walking among birds

Image from Unsplash by Ben White

When I think of a “nest,” I think of home, safety, comfort, security, and peace. What other words come to mind for you?

Consider the visitors you invite into your home, and those whom you would never allow past your welcome mat. We all want to keep the good stuff in and the undesirable things out of our homes.

How much does the inner world of your mind act as a sanctuary – a safe and secure nest? How often do worry or tension-related intruders find their way in, disrupting your world?

EXERCISE:

What are some of your most effective strategies for preventing, or at least limiting, worry and tension from making a nest in your mind?

Please reply to this post and share your most effective techniques. Invite others in your communities to also share their most helpful methods.

“There is more to life than increasing its speed.”

“There is more to life than increasing its speed.”

— Mahatma Gandhi, leader of Indian independence movement in British-ruled India

Photo from Flickr by John Talbot

Photo from Flickr by John Talbot

Have you noticed lately that the pace of life has picked up considerably? Wall Street and large organizations capitalize on the critical factor of speed. Everyone wants what they want bigger, better, and faster—but at what cost?

Evaluate your own organization and examine the level of stress and overall job satisfaction for yourself and those around you. How much more are you expected to accomplish these days compared to a few years ago?

With the internet, smart phones, and other technical wonders that make communication instantaneous, the world expects us to speed up proportionally, and be available 24/7, as if we were computer microprocessors ourselves.

EXERCISE:

Based on what is most important in your life, determine the optimal speed at which you choose to operate, and make the necessary adjustments to your world. Do you need to speed up, or will your life be better if you slow down?

Feel free to reply to this post to share your thoughts and perspective on this important issue.

“For fast acting relief, try slowing down.”

“For fast acting relief, try slowing down.”

– Lily Tomlin, actress and comedian

When I was young, I remember a corny television commercial for Alka-Seltzer. The little jingle that promoted it was “Plop, plop, fizz, fizz, oh what a relief it is!” Catchy, huh?

During the holiday season – or perhaps whenever you wish a bit of relief from the onslaught of life – Tomlin suggests that slowing down may be just the medicine to do the trick.

Exercise:

In what areas of your life do you need to take your foot off the gas and apply the break to experience the relief that you desire?

Who are the coaches, mentors, friends and family members that can help you throttle back?