People differ in their responses to technology and in how much they can and can’t handle. One thing to avoid is tech-overload – allowing technology to get the better of you, overwhelm you or stress you out. Knowing how to manage your use of technology helps you maintain balance and sanity.
Do you know your tech-overload level? Here are some questions to ask yourself:
• What are the signs that I have had too much technology?
• What aspects of technology get me tired and off center (e.g. too much internet surfing, too long on a social media site, having too many e mails to answer or getting blurry-eyed from too much time on your computer or phone)?
• What’s my optimum balance in using and not using technology to get my work done?
• When does technology begin to diminish my creativity and efficiency?
Knowing your tech-overload level helps you manage your work and life. To everything there is a season and time. That includes technology, too.
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Do you work for someone? Do you work for yourself? Boss is a common word in our society that is ascribed many meanings.
What do you think a boss should be? Hierarchical? Kind? Motivating? Encouraging? Tough? Collaborative? Distant? Connected? Smart? Expert?
If you work for a boss or are one yourself, it won’t hurt to think about what the role of a boss should be. Bosses have a huge impact on their workers. Alignment of purpose and style with their team is a win-win.
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Frustration can race like fire, once it starts. Best to have a way to manage your frustration, so it does not consume you. Have you experienced frustration in the past week or two? Think of what happened. How did you handle it? Did you manage your frustration or let it get the better of you?
Frustration is a powerful energy once it gets going, but you can manage it. Here are a few ways: step back and away from the situation to cool off, stop and figure out its cause and what you can do about it or channel your frustration into constructive action. You are more powerful than your frustration – keep it under your control.
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How do you keep track of all that you have to do? You have meetings, projects, phone calls, e mails and much more to get done in the course of a day.
How do you assure that everything gets done efficiently and well? That is a question only you can answer. You have your style, needs and ways of working that all factor in to how you get things done. Take some time to examine and observe how you keep track of all you have to do. What works for you and what doesn’t? It will be time well spent to make sure you don’t forget!
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In a fast-moving world is calmness possible anymore? It is a question worth asking yourself. It may be that it is not possible to keep up with all the demands on your time. What are you to do? One thing you can do is to stop and take a good look at what is happening in your life. Are you paying attention to your priorities and making sure they get done first? Are you allowing overwhelm and stress to get the better of you? Is there a need for you to reevaluate how you are spending your time? Do you know how to regain your center when things get out of control?
It is society that has quickened its pace. You can still manage yourself in relation to what is around you. When you do so, things will begin to flow more easily. When you bring yourself fully to the present moment, things are not speeding by you; they are right there next to you. You have that moment and in that moment you can observe what is happening and make the choices that are best for you.
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Loomio software is a collaborative decision-making tool that fits well into the concept of Free Flow Management. Loomio “enables more transparency and inclusion in decision-making with fewer meetings and e mails”. Its online platform facilitates gathering people, on-topic conversations, visual summaries and clear outcomes.
How does your organization make decisions? Would you say your decisions flow freely or are you bogged down in meetings and email? Our new methods of communication have their advantages, but we do get bogged down with them. New decision-making approaches are called for. It is time well spent for your organization to look at the efficiency and flow of your decision-making and find innovative ways to keep your programs and processes flowing smoothly.
Recently I listened to an episode of This American Life titled In Defense of Ignorance. In the episode, they discussed The Dunning–Kruger Effect, a cognitive bias wherein unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly assessing their ability to be much higher than is accurate. The theory was developed in experiments conducted by Dunning and Kruger of the department of psychology at Cornell University in 1999. The study was inspired by the case of McArthur Wheeler, a man who robbed two banks after covering his face with lemon juice in the mistaken belief that, because lemon juice is usable as invisible ink, it would prevent his face from being recorded on surveillance cameras.
Have you seen the Dunning-Kruger Effect in action in your workplace? You deal with all kinds of personalities in your workplace and need to use your emotional intelligence to remain effective. What do you do when you run into people with an unshakable sense of superiority? How do you keep doing your work well amongst them?
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A recent article in the New York Times said, boldly, that job interviews are utterly useless! The article presented findings of a Yale School of Management study on how well free form unstructured job interviews allow an employer to get to know a candidate.
Whether you are interviewer or interviewee, how do you get the best results? As interviewer, do you need to be egalitarian and have a uniform structure for all candidates? As the interviewee, how do you let your best self shine through in an interview?
Workplace cultures, collaboration and interpersonal dynamics are complex. Perhaps you cannot know, only from an interview, if a candidate or organization is a good fit. Recognizing that an interview is a simple approach to a complex decision may be a starting point in seeking additional methods for your hiring decisions.
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Being busy seems to be a badge of honor these days. This is worth examining. Staying busy because it looks good does not have much merit. What matters is accomplishing what you set out to do, being efficient and staying out of overwhelm.
Working harder is not the only key to success. It may be a part of it, but equally important are having the skills you need, maintaining stamina by staying balanced and being smart about the goals you set.
This month, take a look at how busy you are. Are you productive? Are you getting where you want to go? Are you performing at your maximum? Being busy is not an end in itself. Nor is it a badge of honor. If you need to, let being busy go.
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As you read this post, take a moment to assess how well you are focusing today. Are you tackling your top priorities? Are you instead focusing on lesser priorities or allowing yourself to be distracted?
Focus is a present-moment pursuit. It requires your attention and awareness – first, to identify your priorities and then, to stick to them. Keep your focus strong each day and you’ll find yourself moving forward.
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