How to stay sane when you work

The 80:20 combo with deep reflection

Working for myself (for, by? just me either way) means simultaneously stressing about networking my ass off to meet the ‘right’ people (but being open to opportunities and therefore can’t be too picky), promoting what my work (but without giving up all the goods for free whilst not having an identity crisis because the work is not me), on top of actually doing the work for paying clients.

At the end of my last block of 4-weeks (here’s a previous blog on how it maintains focus and momentum to work in 4-week blocks), I decided to do a deep dive reflecting on the past few weeks, highlighting what was essential, what was non-essential (aka faffing around), and how next to proceed. Continue reading

Don’t stop at ‘Yes’ or ‘No’, think ‘How?’

Action requires doing. So how are you going to follow through?

One key tool in time management is the Eisenhower box, or the Important/Urgent box. I first came across it from James Clear’s article and have added my own twist to it to make it easier to remember:

When we receive requests, it’s easy for us to assume that what’s important is also urgent and immediately go into action without thinking exactly how. We assume that we have to do it right now, or that we have to do it alone. Here are some How’s to consider when you’re unsure whether you can take something on or you know you can’t and need to work out a solution with your boss.

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Guardian of my ego

How to do free research on a new career area? Follow Facebook groups, Twitter feeds and subscribe to newsletters.

How to be overwhelmed by what’s out there, have daily doses of imposter syndrome and FOMO (fear of missing out)? Follow Facebook groups, Twitter feeds and subscribe to newsletters.

…well then.

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Optimise your time 1% at a time

In the run up to publishing my ebook on time (“Stop faffing and get doing in 30 days”), I’ll be sharing a few chapters.


Day 2 – How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

How can you save yourself 1% a day? How can you make up 15 minutes?
What ‘dead-time’ can you maximise? When commuting, I get in the habit of listening to podcasts or reading my Kindle. I put them on my phone’s wallpaper so that I remember to do something a bit more ‘productive’ than scrolling through social media. (The reverse tip is to hide other apps so that you can’t locate them with your eyes closed.)

Where are you dawdling? Spending way more time than needed getting dressed, making dinner plans, gossiping? Continue reading