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5 steps to a CLEAR desk

clear

Can you see the top of your desk or does it look like a wasteland of file folders, business cards and the random paper clip?

If you’re like most busy professionals, cleaning up your desk is low on your list of priorities. At least until you reach your breaking point.

If that time has come, schedule some time to tackle the clutter on your desk. To help you, here’s my decluttering system I use with my clients. It’s five easy steps to get you closer to feeling in control of your workspace again. [Read more…]

3 tricks to stop social media from sucking up your time

Social media time suckHave you seen a teenager lately? It’s rare to find one without a phone in their hand connecting with their “squad” wherever they are, whenever they can.

I am in awe every time I see my  fifteen-year-old daughter using social media. She is a master. She knows the right social media streams to use, she is proficient in how to use them, and she constantly contributes.

In an age where connectivity is the norm, it is difficult to accomplish your work without getting distracted by the pings and dings of your device beckoning you to come and share. In those moments when procrastination is winning the productivity game, there’s nothing like a good dose of Facebook or Instagram to kill an hour of your precious time.

If you’re not careful, social media will suck hours out of your day and cause your productivity to plummet.  Here are three tricks you can implement today to ensure you are in the driver’s seat when it comes to participating in social media. [Read more…]

3 powerful ways to automate your email

automate your emailWould you believe me if I told you that 70% – 80% of your day is spent in your inbox?

The Huffington Post reports US workers spend 6.3 hours a day checking emails, with 3.2 hours devoted to work emails and 3.1 hours to personal messages.

That’s A LOT of time. If you’re spending that amount of time in your inbox, when do you get your actual work done… let alone time for your family, friends and fun?

As a busy person, your email inbox is notorious for interruptions, distractions and procrastination.

While email can empower you to get more done, it can also be a colossal waste of time.

Your email client, whether it’s Gmail or Outlook, has three powerful features to help you take back control of your inbox. When you use these three email power moves, you will approach your inbox proactively, use your time more efficiently and spend your energy more productively. [Read more…]

Your checklist for unplugging from work while on vacation

unpluggingThe definition of vacation is “taking a break from work” or vacating the office. There are three very important reasons for taking a vacation from the busyness of work: to relax, renew and rejuvenate.

You need downtime, otherwise, stress and burnout will come knocking. Tweet that!

A recent HR management study showed that 40% of workers “feel more productive and better about their job” when returning from vacation. Stats or not, think about how YOU feel when you return from time away from your office.

It’s likely you feel a sense of wellbeing that comes with giving your brain and your body some time away from the daily routine.

The truth is it’s getting harder to completely disconnect from work while on holiday. Expectations from clients and colleagues may have impeded your ability to feel guilt-free when you’re offline.

Here’s a quick and easy checklist you can use to prepare for your off-the-grid downtime and make unplugging easier so you can enjoy your time away. [Read more…]

The number 1 mistake when choosing your tech tool

The number 1 mistake in choosing a tech toolThose hot humid days of summer are upon us. Forget the humidex; I know it’s muggy because my hair is frizzy. I asked my good friend Carol what she uses to keep her hair sleek during those steamy days.

Of course I immediately rushed out and bought the product, lathered it on and waited for the awesomeness to start. I waited and waited and then BAM, the frizz returned.

Have you ever had an issue, randomly asked someone for their solution and then tried it for yourself?

Sometimes it works, often it doesn’t.

The same happens when choosing your business tech tools. With so many choices of apps at your fingertips, purchasing is the easy part, but choosing can be complicated and overwhelming.

There is one b.i.g. mistake that is often made when choosing apps to help you run your business.

This scenario may sound familiar … [Read more…]

Create your simple paperless office system

create your simple paperless office systemThis is the third of a three-part series called The Paper Chase.

Does the idea of having a paperless office bring joy and calm to your mind? Having less paper clutter around you allows for a greater flow of creativity and clarity. There are other rewards too: saved money, more time and it’s better for the environment.

Knowing where to start can be confusing. Here are three easy steps to make the transition smooth and stress-free. [Read more…]

30 powerful messages to help you work + live better

30 powerful messages to help you work + live betterHave you ever gone to an event and been blown away by the people, speakers and content? You arrive back into the real world, motivated, inspired and renewed.

I’m still on the post-conference high from the Women in Leadership + Business Conference, where I was asked to speak on productivity. For two days I was in the company of thought leaders, game changers and motivators.

While I was there I kept thinking of you. Specifically, how best to share all that I’ve learned to help you work better and with more ease. While this is by no means a comprehensive list, it gives you a glimpse into some powerful messages that will inspire you to work (and live) better. [Read more…]

How to make your clients feel at home in your business

how to make your clients feel at homeThis past weekend was my Dad’s 99th birthday … yes, he was 70 when I was born! (wink, wink)

Because we were travelling from out-of-town to attend the celebration, we decided to rent a house.

We arrived and the house was lovely. It was out in the country, surrounded by trees and rolling hills. As we settled in, things took a turn for the worse. [Read more…]

A sure-fire way to accomplish your work

LucyI love autumn.

The air is crisp and cool, the trees are full of colour and I get to wear big comfy sweaters.

It’s a great season to take my dog, Lucy, for a walk in the park. Usually, we have an hour to romp and play, but this day was different.

I had a project to get done, so this walk was all about Lucy doing her business … and fast.

But as we entered the park, it looked like a squirrel party. They were everywhere and Lucy was in heaven. Her all-time favourite thing to do is chase squirrels.

As I watched her burst into a full sprint after a squirrel who dashed toward the nearest tree, I could feel myself getting progressively frustrated.

Couldn’t she just focus and get on with the task at hand?

And then I thought of you!

Are you wasting your time and energy chasing squirrels rather than getting on with your work? [Read more…]

Beat the bottlenecks in your business

Screen Shot 2013-09-21 at 10.40.07 AMBottlenecks in your business are like having a bad head cold. Just as your nose gets congested and your head feels heavy when you’re sick, so too does your business when experiencing a bottleneck. You’ll notice your workflow gets clogged and your business becomes sluggish and inefficient.

Symptoms also include piles of paper on and around your desk, tasks remaining undone and rising stress levels.

The first step in finding relief is to identify the bottlenecks. That’s not always easy to do on your own, so I’ve put together a list of the top five common business bottlenecks and what you can do to beat them. [Read more…]