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Welcome to the New World Office Blog

This is where I will be posting anything from tips on office procedures, email, file, or time management, email etiquette, and even things I may learn about various software.  Read on and join in!

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Thursday
Feb182016

5 Ways to Keep Your Goals on Target

 
Whether personal or professional, we usually have let our goals start to slip a little by the time February comes around.  We have the best of intentions in January, but with so many things to do, we can easily get overwhelmed and lose track of what we were shooting for, especially if our goal is more long-term.  Here are 5 ways to help you gain some forward momentum:
  1. Break your goal down into smaller steps – is your goal to lose 50 pounds this year?  Or to roll out a new training initiative in your agency?  Either way, these big goals can be broken down into smaller steps so your goal won’t seem so overwhelming.  Remember, we don’t eat a large sausage in one piece; we break it down into manageable chunks.
     
  2. Use your calendar – there’s something about writing a task or goal down that makes it all the more real.  Take your broken down goal steps and put them on the calendar when you realistically think you can reach them, and set yourself a reminder.  
     
  3. Log your achievements – This shows you’re making headway, especially if you tend to slide into the feeling of “I’m still not there!”  You’re GETTING there, and this log will prove it!
     
  4. Know your motivation – this is important when facing a difficult challenge.  When you know WHY you want to achieve a particular goal, you can lean on that motivation when times get tough and you want to slip backwards. 
     
  5. Reward yourself – Were you trying to show someone how important your new project is and they’re finally on board?  Give yourself a pat on the back and treat yourself – go for a walk around your building, get a fun coffee drink, or give yourself 5 extra minutes meditating!

 

Monday
Aug172015

3 Ways to Get Very Little Accomplished


 

Ok, FOUR ways to get very little accomplished.

1.  Ditch the plan for the day -  If there is nothing specific for me to focus on doing when I wake up, I end up just going through the day in a reactive way.  In other words, when I'm at my computer, I just respond to emails willy nilly, I get pulled in several directions as my phone rings, my email dings, and my cats sing (ok, meow, but that didn't rhyme).  When I wake up, I need to have a goal in order to get me going.  It could be to work on a specific project, to tie up some loose ends, or to head to the mountains for a hike.   If I have even a simple game plan, it's more likely it will be executed.

2.  Allow the details to overwhelm you - Often it's the small little things we need to do, and lots of them, that can overwhelm us.  If I have 3 projects to do, but 17 little things to do, THOSE are the things that bug me the most.  Unless I write them down and put a time estimate next to them to see how long each one will take, my mind blows these up and I get frustrated and stressed, which means I can't focus on the big picture. Once I realize each little thing only takes 2-10 minutes each, it puts them into perspective in my head, and I can relax more.

3. Get lost in email - yeah, yeah, I KNOW email is part of your job and reading and responding to your emails can help get things done.  But honestly, how often does this happen: 
  • you read an email, don't want to deal with it, close it; 
  • read another email, maybe respond; 
  • open an email, read it, then realize you read it before and that's one you don't want to deal with now, close it; 
  • read an email and respond quickly, 
  • read an email, don't want to deal with it, close it;
  • and on and on.  
Before you know it, an hour (or 2 or 3) has passed and the real work you need to do has gone untouched.  Right?  If we actually deal with, or process, the email when we read it, and set a time limit on how long we are on email, then we could get out of the email trap and get to working on our actual work.  

 

Thursday
Jan292015

One Small Step, One Big Change

Here it is the end of January already!  How many of you made New Year’s resolutions?  How many of you are still sticking with them?  This is usually the time when our resolutions to do new things start to wane, especially if we haven’t seen much progress.

When it comes to creating new habits, it takes time.  But time flies by so quickly that before we know it, it will be June, the year half gone, and none of our goals will have been attained because we thought we had plenty of time to work on them.

 

When it comes to keeping up new resolutions, we’ve got to be realistic.  A resolution is determining upon a course of action.  But how many courses of actions can you actually fit into your life at the same time?  And how difficult is each course of action?  

 

When you want to change things in your life, break changes down into simple steps and start with just ONE step, then once that becomes more natural, add another one.

 

If you want to lose 50 pounds this year, there are so many things you need to do to make that happen.  This can be overwhelming for most people, too much for the brain to absorb, and then by now (end of January), you’re done.  You slip back into your old routine, feel depressed, and nothing good has come of any of it.

Or you want to get better with time management (I mean, who doesn’t, right?).  Again, you’re taking on WAY too much – many many things to do under this umbrella.  In order to succeed, just pick one small thing to start with.

To begin improving your time management, start by looking at your calendar BEFORE your email in the morning, before you get sucked into the drama and tasks within your email world.  By looking at yor calendar FIRST,  you can see what’s coming up for today, and tomorrow, and get mentally prepared for it all.  It only takes a few minutes.  THEN, you can check your email.

And check your calendar again right before you shut everything down at night, so you can remind yourself what’s happening tomorrow (and you won’t forget about that unusually early morning meeting that you otherwise would have slept through!).

That’s it.  One tiny change that can make a big difference.  Once you get used to doing that without thinking, then add another small change towards your time management improvement.  By June, you’ll truly be on your way to attaining your bigger goal!