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Top Visual Trends of 2016

Top Visual Trends of 2016

The year 2016 was unpredictable even when we thought we had it figured out. Looking into the New Year, people will be a tad cautious of making predictions, but there are trends that we can expect to make a statement in the New Year.

Wrong political predictions marked 2016. First, there was Brexit, and then there was the U.S. presidential election. Never has the world been so wrong. The news from Syria did not get any better, as the civil war entered its fifth year. We lost a few stars too, among them Prince and George Michael. It was an unsettling year, but that hasn’t stopped the world from hoping for better things ahead.

In light of this, 2017 is likely to be an interesting year from all angles. The world will be watching as new leadership takes over. That aside, we seem to have reached a point of self-awareness as far as the environment is concerned. Collectively, we are only becoming aware of the consequences of years of wrongful living.

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Suddenly, the world seems to have a strong desire to make the Earth green again. You have probably heard talk of recycling and up-cycling now more than ever. There is a talk of using cleaner fuel, and countries such as the Netherlands are becoming case studies of what it means to rally behind a greener Earth.

Nutrition wise, 2016 has seen a continued advocacy for healthier lifestyles. More people are aware of their sedentary lifestyles and seem eager to ditch them for active pastimes (we could credit celebrities for this). This trend is likely to continue in 2017 as health groups continue to push the world towards wiser choices. Fitness has never been more fashionable.

In the fashion and style arena, we are likely to see a return to originality. This concept is a follow-up on what we have seen in 2016. People are keen to return to their roots. We have seen an increased interest in natural hair, nude faces, and a burst of colors. The fashion industry is likely to get even more colorful and bold, as we see people expressing themselves fearlessly. Self-awareness has captured the world and no one wants to be left behind.

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Technology is not expected to take a break. Actually, we expect some incredible breakthroughs that will make everyday activities easier. At this rate, no one would be surprised if this technology-hungry generation came up with AI technology that runs personal errands. Oh, wait, Mark Zuckerberg already unleashed Jarvis for his home! There is so much in store for the coming year that it can make you antsy with anticipation. Unlike other years, no one can accurately predict how it is going to be, which is part of the charm.

Unfiltered Feed

If you have paid attention to photography in 2016, photographers have been retreating to shooting on raw. There is this originality that only comes out on imperfections. The new generation seems interested in cutting out the noise and focusing on only one aspect in the midst of chaos. This method of shooting brings out a creative edge that forces you to stop and take note. We can expect more of this unfiltered work of art in 2017.

Additionally, Getty Images predicts that imagery will be directed on what they call New Naivety. New Naivety uncovers what we previously fought hard to cover. It exposes the imperfections such as chubbiness and freckles. The younger generation is finding ways of expressing themselves with unbridled freedom, which has big business following suit.

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Branding

Although 2016 has seen the rise of social media from just a social link-up to a place where companies can push their names, there is still no measurable evidence that the traffic driven by likes, followings, and comments translates to sales. Since this type of ROI cannot be measured without a doubt (yet), brand loyalty remains the driving force that gives a definite return. To this end, companies are going to continue their marketing agenda to keep and expand their share of the market.

Branding is more likely to take a visual route than before. We are likely to have colorful packaging with bold lettering that goes beyond how to use the product. As awareness rises, food containers will loudly proclaim what is inside, and there is a high possibility of it being organic.

More brands will show distaste for animal cruelty by showing it on proudly on their labels such as Too Faced and Hourglass. They even carry a vegan line for inclusion. The idea, in 2017, will be to brand the products in such a way that consumers can tell from the get-go what they are buying. Custom brushes and Pantone swatches are some of the tools that will be at the top of the list of programs for graphic artists in 2017.

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Color Me Bright

We are swimming in an outburst of color. Photography has come of age and is no longer afraid of breaking the rules. We see image-makers playing with unimaginable combinations to bring out what something ought to be, and not necessarily what the world would expect it to look like.

This burst of boldness is creating an interesting angle at branding and arousing interest. In 2017, we expect to see more of this color scheme, and a campaign that does not conform to the conventional palette.

Fashion Freedom

The world is embracing different body types. In 2016, we saw an influx of self-assured plus size women in magazines, especially the 2016 edition of Sports Illustrated that featured Ashley Graham. Even though she is not an exceptionally big woman, it is good to see the top-rated magazine feature someone who is not a size zero.

In 2017 we will see the continued trend of women boldly showing off their curves. The world is advocating for better diets and active lifestyles to fight obesity. However, a platform is quickly coming up for people with ‘less than perfect’ bodies (have in mind that the average American woman is size 16) to embrace the present as they work for the future. Brands dealing in apparel for full-figured women such as Wacoal and Spanx will get bolder with louder colors and designs that are more daring.

In conclusion, we found that if 2016 was ambitious, then the world hasn’t seen anything yet. The year 2017 will bring even more disruptive events that will change the way we look toward the future.

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Erick Clifford

Journalist

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Last Updated on November 19, 2019

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

20 Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity

Are you usually punctual or late? Do you finish things within the time you stipulate? Do you hand in your reports/work on time? Are you able to accomplish what you want to do before deadlines? Are you a good time manager?

If your answer is “no” to any of the questions above, that means you’re not managing your time as well as you want. Here are 20 time management tips to help you manage time better:

1. Create a Daily Plan

Plan your day before it unfolds. Do it in the morning or even better, the night before you sleep. The plan gives you a good overview of how the day will pan out. That way, you don’t get caught off guard. Your job for the day is to stick to the plan as best as possible.

2. Peg a Time Limit to Each Task

Be clear that you need to finish X task by 10am, Y task by 3pm, and Z item by 5:30pm. This prevents your work from dragging on and eating into time reserved for other activities.

3. Use a Calendar

Having a calendar is the most fundamental step to managing your daily activities. If you use outlook or lotus notes, calendar come as part of your mailing software.

I use it. It’s even better if you can sync your calendar to your mobile phone and other hardwares you use – that way, you can access your schedule no matter where you are. Here’re the 10 Best Calendar Apps to Stay on Track .

Find out more tips about how to use calendar for better time management here: How to Use a Calendar to Create Time and Space

4. Use an Organizer

An organizer helps you to be on top of everything in your life. It’s your central tool to organize information, to-do lists, projects, and other miscellaneous items.

These Top 15 Time Management Apps and Tools can help you organize better, pick one that fits your needs.

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5. Know Your Deadlines

When do you need to finish your tasks? Mark the deadlines out clearly in your calendar and organizer so you know when you need to finish them.

But make sure you don’t make these 10 Common Mistakes When Setting Deadlines.

6. Learn to Say “No”

Don’t take on more than you can handle. For the distractions that come in when you’re doing other things, give a firm no. Or defer it to a later period.

Leo Babauta, the founder of Zen Habits has some great insights on how to say no: The Gentle Art of Saying No

7. Target to Be Early

When you target to be on time, you’ll either be on time or late. Most of the times you’ll be late. However, if you target to be early, you’ll most likely be on time.

For appointments, strive to be early. For your deadlines, submit them earlier than required.

Learn from these tips about how to prepare yourself to be early, instead of just in time.

8. Time Box Your Activities

This means restricting your work to X amount of time. Why time boxing is good for you? Here’re 10 reasons why you should start time-boxing.

You can also read more about how to do time boxing here: #5 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity.

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9. Have a Clock Visibly Placed Before You

Sometimes we are so engrossed in our work that we lose track of time. Having a huge clock in front of you will keep you aware of the time at the moment.

10. Set Reminders 15 Minutes Before

Most calendars have a reminder function. If you have an important meeting to attend, set that alarm 15 minutes before.

You can learn more about how reminders help you remember everything in this article: The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder That Works)

11. Focus

Are you multi-tasking so much that you’re just not getting anything done? If so, focus on just one key task at one time. Multitasking is bad for you.

Close off all the applications you aren’t using. Close off the tabs in your browser that are taking away your attention. Focus solely on what you’re doing. You’ll be more efficient that way.

Lifehack’s CEO has written a definitive guide on how to focus, learn the tips: How to Focus and Maximize Your Productivity (the Definitive Guide)

12. Block out Distractions

What’s distracting you in your work? Instant messages? Phone ringing? Text messages popping in?

I hardly ever use chat nowadays. The only times when I log on is when I’m not intending to do any work. Otherwise it gets very distracting.

When I’m doing important work, I also switch off my phone. Calls during this time are recorded and I contact them afterward if it’s something important. This helps me concentrate better.

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Find more tips on how to minimize distractions to achieve more in How to Minimize Distraction to Get Things Done

13. Track Your Time Spent

When you start to track your time, you’re more aware of how you spend your time. For example, you can set a simple countdown timer to make sure that you finish a task within a period of time, say 30 minutes or 1 hour. The time pressure can push you to stay focused and work more efficiently.

You can find more time tracking apps here and pick one that works for you.

14. Don’t Fuss About Unimportant Details

You’re never get everything done in exactly the way you want. Trying to do so is being ineffective.

Trying to be perfect does you more harm than good, learn here about how perfectionism kills your productivity and how to ditch the perfectionism mindset.

15. Prioritize

Since you can’t do everything, learn to prioritize the important and let go of the rest.

Apply the 80/20 principle which is a key principle in prioritization. You can also take up this technique to prioritize everything on your plate: How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

16. Delegate

If there are things that can be better done by others or things that are not so important, consider delegating. This takes a load off and you can focus on the important tasks.

When you delegate some of your work, you free up your time and achieve more. Learn about how to effectively delegate works in this guide: How to Delegate Work (the Definitive Guide for Successful Leaders)

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17. Batch Similar Tasks Together

For related work, batch them together.

For example, my work can be categorized into these core groups:

  1. writing (articles, my upcoming book)
  2. coaching
  3. workshop development
  4. business development
  5. administrative

I batch all the related tasks together so there’s synergy. If I need to make calls, I allocate a time slot to make all my calls. It really streamlines the process.

18. Eliminate Your Time Wasters

What takes your time away your work? Facebook? Twitter? Email checking? Stop checking them so often.

One thing you can do is make it hard to check them – remove them from your browser quick links / bookmarks and stuff them in a hard to access bookmarks folder. Replace your browser bookmarks with important work-related sites.

While you’ll still checking FB/Twitter no doubt, you’ll find it’s a lower frequency than before.

19. Cut off When You Need To

The number one reason why things overrun is because you don’t cut off when you have to.

Don’t be afraid to intercept in meetings or draw a line to cut-off. Otherwise, there’s never going to be an end and you’ll just eat into the time for later.

20. Leave Buffer Time In-Between

Don’t pack everything closely together. Leave a 5-10 minute buffer time in between each tasks. This helps you wrap up the previous task and start off on the next one.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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