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Want to Achieve All Your Goals and Dreams…in Half the Time?

Want to Achieve All Your Goals and Dreams…in Half the Time?


    We are all busy. Hopping or jumping or running around from task to project. Fitting everything in is a task only organisational gurus can manage to do. We are bred with a belief that we must work hard — that the only route to success is sweat and toil.

    But what if it didn’t have to be that way?

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    What if we could do half of the work and achieve all our goals and dreams in half the time?

    It’s easier than you think; it just involves a little bit of planning and a lot of common sense.

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    In Work

    Do you ever start out the day at work without planning what you want to achieve? I’m sure you have done it, but you know that you shouldn’t. You spend the day reacting to things that come your way rather than taking the lead. If you work in this manner — allowing your emails and the people around you to dictate your task list and your schedule — you will never be effective in work. You know that by setting the agenda ahead of time you are much more likely to get the important things done…and done more quickly. You should be in control of your work day.

    Of course there are times when you have to react and do work that was not previously scheduled. But if the work that you are putting aside is scheduled, you can reschedule for the following day and ensure that it will all get done.

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    In Life

    It is just as important to be clear about what you want to achieve in your personal life. If you know what you want (and have a clear picture of it in your head) it’s pretty obvious you are going to achieve it more quickly than if you let the ideas float around in your mind.

    Here is a list of what you need to do to get clear about what you want and how to start moving towards achieving it:

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    1. Spend time on your goals. Don’t just have a vague idea of what you want to achieve. Take some quiet time to identify what it is you want. Even if you are not 100% sure, start by taking some action. The only bad decision is indecision. You need to start walking down a road to see if it is the right road for you.
    2. Plan your time and prioritize what’s important. If you have lofty goals and dreams the easiest way to achieve them is to work towards them bit by bit. Ensure that everything that you do daily is helping you towards their attainment. Don’t waste your time doing things that aren’t going to help you fulfill your dreams. By having clear goals you can regularly check that the work you are busy with everyday is in alignment with them.
    3. Eliminate time-wasting activities. Life is too short to drink cheap wine — and it is also too short to waste time on aimless social media and browsing the Internet aimlessly. Get with it; there is work to be done, grand things to achieve and dreams to fulfill. I’ve heard some people say that Facebook is their way to relax, mindlessly moving from post to post, page to page. There are much more powerful ways to relax than that. Meditation, yoga, mindfulness — these are ways to relax the body and still the mind. Social media is not.

    Get clear about your goals, write them down and use them as a gauge to check if the work you do daily is supporting your bigger picture. When you start to do these things, you will find that your goals will begin to manifest more quickly than expected.

    (Photo credit: Businessman Winning a Race via Shutterstock)

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    Ciara Conlon

    Productivity coach, speaker, blogger and author of Chaos to Control, a Practical Guide to Getting Things Done

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    Last Updated on March 13, 2019

    How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

    How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

    Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

    You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

    Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

    1. Work on the small tasks.

    When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

    Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

    2. Take a break from your work desk.

    Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

    Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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    3. Upgrade yourself

    Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

    The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

    4. Talk to a friend.

    Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

    Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

    5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

    If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

    Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

    Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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    6. Paint a vision to work towards.

    If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

    Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

    Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

    7. Read a book (or blog).

    The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

    Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

    Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

    8. Have a quick nap.

    If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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    9. Remember why you are doing this.

    Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

    What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

    10. Find some competition.

    Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

    Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

    11. Go exercise.

    Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

    Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

    As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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    Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

    12. Take a good break.

    Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

    Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

    Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

    Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

    More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

    Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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