Food for Thought – Work Smarter, Not Harder

Walgreens Drives Productivity The Sunday paper contained an insert produced by Walgreens. It listed ways to boost brain power. Five of the suggestions focused on the food we eat. Avocados contain medium-chain fatty acids, which increase our brainpower by reducing inflammation. Fish contains omega-3 fatty acids, which boost memory by spurring structural brain changes. Wine & Peanuts both[…]

What I Learned About Email While on Vacation

Yellowstone_August2015_12_copyThe Epic Montana Adventure

Our 2015 summer vacation took four of us through the wilds of western Montana. We camped in the southern reaches of the Bitterroot Valley before traversing deep into the Ruby River outback. We enjoyed Yellowstone National Park next. Our return path took us through Bozeman before heading north back to Whitefish.
Internet connectivity was sporadic throughout the trip, with the longest disconnection occurring for 72 hours. Valuable lessons were learned about our connected lives.

Observations on Modern Connected Lifestyles

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Two Flavors of Email – Open & Closed

EmailMedicKitEmail use continues its upward climb. The Radicati Group recently reported that email is growing at five percent per year and will to do so through 2019. Though growth is slowing, the existing volume makes any increase problematic.

Sorting through email takes a lot of time each day, and keeping track of what needs our attention is overwhelming. What if there was a quick and easy way to decide what to do with every email? […]

Optimism: It’s Why We’re Late

SmileyThe Dark Side of Optimism

Whoda thunk that something so positive could have a dark side? That’s right. Optimism, the feel-good feeling, the basis for the entire self-help industry, the underlying principle of the smiley face can be harmful.

Now, I’m not having “a case of the Mondays,” cuz it’s Thursday. I ask only that you consider the evidence.

Would Optimism Please Take the Stand

We’ll dispense with the pleasantries, Optimism. Is it not true that you

  • Conspire to make people think their next meeting is “just two floors down?”
  • Encourage people to do one more thing before heading out?
  • Convince people that traffic is never bad this time of day?

Guilty on all counts! […]

Five Ways to Make Silence Work for You

QuietThe Silent Symphony

The modern world is a symphony of noise. The squawks and pings of mobile devices are only the latest editions to the cacophony of rings, bells, announcements, conversations and other noise-producing machinations of daily professional life. Interestingly, getting things done – being productive – is largely a result of silence. In fact, the quieter we can make our internal and external worlds, the more productive we become. […]

Mini-Monk Mode Sharpens Focus And Increases Productivity

Short Bursts of Quiet In his book “Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less,” Greg McKeown refers to getting focused as being in the “Monk Mode.” The benefit to the Monk Mode is greater and higher quality work product. Given our time-starved world, it might be more effective to find Mini-Monk Modes throughout our day. Here[…]

Five Killer Note Taking Abbreviations

Action-Oriented Note Taking Taking notes is a good way to capture and digest the content of a meeting. It also increases focus on the subject matter at hand, as the notes preserve the salient points. Here is a list of abbreviations for use when taking notes to make them even more productive: A is an[…]