AEP-015 Take Time to Think

Take Time to Think and Prioritize

Ever feel like there is just too much to do and you can’t even think straight?  Yep, me too!  Yet your job as CEO of your business is to think clearly.  Yes you need to be productive with daily work tasks, but if you cannot think clearly about what’s happening currently and what’s ahead your success will be short-lived.  That is why you need to take time to think.

Listen in and learn why this is so important and some creative ways to make space even in your crazy life to take time to think.

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Lose Track of Time [Business Flow]

One of the characteristics of being in a flow state according to famous researcher Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi is to lose track of time. Think about it — when you are doing something you love, totally engrossed in a task, time vanishes from your mind.

So to get more flow in your business, take steps to lose track of time. Use a timer for 30, 60, 90 minutes, remove all distractions, and dive in. To get more flow overall – get away from all distractions and do something you love. That flow state will transfer over to your daily life and build your “flow” habit.

 

What do you do to create more flow? Comment below…

Are You Being Effective Or Just Staying Busy?

Are you staying busy or being effective?It can be very easy to become overly-busy when you own your own business. After all there are a myriad of things to do and then more!

When you decide how you are going to invest your time and energy each week, are you asking yourself the right questions?

Or, are you just being crazy-busy?

I was working with a client the other day and as we were going through her new way of scheduling her week based on an in-person intensive we had together she said “It all looks good on paper, but then it just seems like there’s not enough time!”

Can you relate to that? I know I can.

As I delved deeper with her, we discovered the root of the problem was not how much time was available, but rather what choices she could make about how she spends her time.  When I asked her, “Are you working on x, y, z (from her strategic plan) or are you just busy doing stuff?”  The gaping silence answered that question.

I know personally there are some days where I am more effective in one hour than I was the whole previous day. Why? It has to do with choices about:

  • The actions I take
  • The thoughts I think

A magic elixir of what I do and how I do it.  Presence matters in business. We hear that all the time from leadership experts.  It is true, even if it is just you in your office alone on a given day.

So, how do you know if you’re being effective?  The proof is in measured results. [Read more…]

Why the Work-Life Balance Conversation is All Wrong

Why Work Life Balance is BrokenA few months ago I attended a huge women’s conference with some of the most powerful women on the planet speaking.  So I sat in on a panel of experts discussing work-life integration to see what wisdom I could glean from business owners and CEO’s.  Some of what was spoken on this panel made me want to run screaming from the sardine can of an overcrowded conference room.

When the panel started with introductions, one COO started by saying in her strung out voice “I’ve only had 4 hours of sleep over the last two days.”  I thought – why the hell should I be listening to you about work-life integration?  In my opinion the panel only got worse from there.

If we were truly discussing how to have it all at the right time, I would have expected some wisdom from successful women who have found a way of being at the top of their professional game while also having a personal life they love. Instead, with the exception of the one panelist who was real and offered valuable insights, I found myself desperately wanting to rush the stage and give the others a slap and wake-up call.

It pained me deeply to see a room of several hundred women hanging on the words of a few overworked business owners as if what they spoke was gospel and held the keys to their own sweet yearnings for a career and life that works, particularly those working mothers.

As I listened to their stories, what I really wanted to know is:

  • Why do women have to get to the point of breaking before they cry out for help or are willing to set a boundary?
  • How can you possibly call it work-life balance to go to work early, come home early to catch your child’s event and then spend all night into the wee hours working once again?
  • Why do you have to be available at all hours just because you need a flexible work schedule? What are you trying to compensate for?
  • When did saying No become heresy and a career death sentence?

Story after story of working constantly and showing up at their children’s events only to have their face buried in the mobile device with work made me shake my head.  The one panelist even shared that her own son would ask her after his football games – why are you still working instead of watching my game?  This comment made her feel guilty so she stopped looking at her phone and her son really took notice as it mattered a lot to him. Yet she shared her choice with all the regret of a drug addict missing their hit.

When did work-life balance become a thinly veiled term for trying to have it all by never really being present for any of it? [Read more…]

How to Prioritize When Everything is a Priority

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