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Working at Night is for Raccoons – Not You!

Working at Night is for Raccoons – Not You!

Working at Night is for Racoons!

    If you’re packing your computer or briefcase and lugging it home to do more work most days you gotta ask yourself, “Why am I doing this?” When you’re sitting in front of the keyboard writing an email to someone at the office at midnight would your friends ask, “Aren’t there other things you’d rather be doing?” When you get your paycheck do you think, “I sure get paid well, that’s why I work all the time!” (I won’t even delve into you being hunched over your crackberry during meals, meetings, and otherwise merry-making time.)

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    You are not really wired for working day and night. Raccoons are nocturnal, lions are nocturnal, and bats are nocturnal. Humans are not nocturnal. Those animals have special accommodations for functioning optimally in the dark – their hearing is enhanced, their eye sight is developed for low light situations (in fact, they don’t like daylight), and they sleep during the day so they’re rested and ready for their evening forays. You, however, have been designed for daylight activity. You are meant to get up with the sun and do your work while it shines. You eyes work best in daylight. Your energy ramps up after you break fast (you do eat breakfast, don’t you!?). You can best take care of your basic needs during the day – get food and maintain shelter.

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    Results of night time and usually overworking are:

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    • Constant fatigue
    • Disconnection from family and friends
    • Waste of time, energy, money, resources
    • Loneliness
    • Failure to achieve your goals as an employee, business owner, parent, partner, spiritual being, or other important area
    • Stress
    • Resentment of the unending demands
    • Sickness. The NIH (National Health Institute) points as stress as the #1 contributor to sickness.

    Signals of night-time working mentioned above could be the result of some of these actions:

    • You don’t negotiate ‘No’ as in , “No I couldn’t get that done by the deadline without missing other deadlines I’m committed to making.”
    • You engage in long conversations with colleagues rather than keeping it brief
    • You treat all work as equal rather than selecting the truly impactful and meaningful assignments
    • You do more of what you enjoy than what advances your career
    • You need an assistant and have the okay to hire one but don’t take the time to find him
    • Your boss rarely gives you recognition for a job well done
    • You have a lousy time when you get home so you burrow in to work rather than go ‘there’

    If this describes you at all you can flip things around and contain work within work hours. To put it right out here in black in white rather than hope you’ll take the time to extrapolate some of the solutions here are some steps to take:

    • Turn your crackberry off after a fixed hour. To be polite record a message informing callers that you’re putting boundaries around your work and will get back to them during the next morning.
    • Do not bring your computer home or login to work on your computer at home.
    • Curtail time consuming and unproductive activities at work.
    • Make and honor commitments with people outside work. Take your spouse on a date once a week, schedule time with a trainer, make the evening run, ride or racquetball game with your club, attend the kids’ games at least once a week, and volunteer nearby.
    • Go to bed 7.5 hours before you want to get up.
    • Get up with an hour to get ready for the day. Eat well, shower, dress, and take time to chat with someone
    • Limit the time you spend in front of a screen (of any connection – game, Internet, etc).
    • Examine your work with the 80/20 rule in mind. 80% of your reward will come from 20% of the projects you’re asked to do so spend 80% of your time on the 20% with big payoff

    Those are some observations from my desk — what do you see from yours with regard to leaving work at work?

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    Last Updated on November 17, 2019

    20 Creative Ways To Say Thank You

    20 Creative Ways To Say Thank You

    Saying, “Thank you,” can be difficult to do. Some things just demand a little something extra because of the magnitude of the favor or the depth of appreciation involved. But what can you do to say thank you in a meaningful way? Sometimes you have to get a little more creative than just firing off an email. Here are 20 creative ways to say thank you that your friends and family will remember and cherish!

    1. Make a gift bag.

    A unique, homemade gift bag with a custom label or a note is a simple but heartfelt way to show your appreciation for the wonderful things your friends or family have done for you.

    2. Give a toast.

    Many people fear public speaking more than death, giving this particular thank-you a little extra meaning. Composing a sincere, eloquent toast and delivering it is a nice way to show appreciation that truly comes from the heart.

    3. Write a poem.

    “Roses are red, violets are blue…” Uh, you could write that...but why not put a little extra zing in it? Find out what their favorite kind of poetry is: haiku, free verse, iambic pentameter, and so on. (Google them if you don’t know what they are.) Then write one that expresses why they deserve your thanks…and why you’re glad to give it!

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    4. Create your own labels.

    There are a number of websites that offer custom gift labels. Find one that fits your personality and that of your friends and create a personalized thank-you label!

    5. Give a gift card.

    Sometimes choosing what to give a friend can be tough. A gift card is a good way to get around this problem. As always, be sure to include a personalized note or card thanking the recipient for their friendship and help.

    6. Send a letter.

    Snail-mail is a largely lost art form. Don’t worry about how long the letter is, though. What really matters here is that you took the time to put pen to paper and express your feelings sincerely and honestly!

    7. Use social media to send a special message.

    If someone’s done something you think the whole world should know about, why not put out a social media blast? Use your blog, your Facebook, your Google+ account, and your Twitter to spread the word about why this person’s someone your friends will want to know too!

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    8. Make your own digital greeting card.

    While an email isn’t always the best way to go when saying thank you, a digital greeting card that you put time and effort into creating can really brighten someone’s day! Make the card reflect the recipient’s personality and compose a short message of thanks for their generosity.

    9. Make a YouTube video.

    Sometimes, actually hearing someone say, “Thank you,” can make all the difference. Why not take it a step further and create a special video of thanks for your friends, family, and those special people who helped make your day so important…or who helped you through that rough time?

    10. Deliver cookies or candies.

    Making something yourself is a fun and delightful way to say thank you to someone. Create a sampling of baked goods or homemade candies and decorate them with a simple message, or make them so they form letters! (Think Valentine’s candies, only situationally appropriate.) Attach a thank-you note or label and surprise those special people with the gift of your time and creativity.

    11. Make surprise gifts for guests.

    There’s no need to wait until “later” to send a thank-you message. Why not do it at the time? Create little gift packets or bags for your guests with surprises inside. This is a great way to say thanks to the people who attended your event, and make sure they won’t want to miss the next one!

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    12. Put together a flower basket.

    Whether you prefer fresh or artificial flowers, assembling a flower basket with a thank-you note is an excellent way to brighten someone’s day and show you appreciate them.

    13. Take a picture.

    Sometimes capturing the moment is the best way to put a smile on someone’s face. Have someone take a picture of you receiving that special gift or opening that surprise package and send the giver a copy with a quick but sincere note to say thanks!

    14. Repay their generosity by paying it forward.

    The best gifts come from the heart, and the best way to repay a gift is to pay it forward. If your friend has a special cause they care about or something they believe in passionately, why not make a donation in their name or volunteer some of your time to the cause? This will mean more than any number of cookies, candies, or thank-you notes because you’re taking your friend’s love and spreading it around to others.

    15. Do something special for them.

    Take them out to dinner. (See “make a toast.”) Give them that movie they’ve been wanting forever. Cook them dinner and give them a present when they arrive. Any of these are good options for showing someone you really appreciate them and how grateful you are to have them in your life.

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    16. Reciprocate their help.

    Everyone needs help sometime. Whether it’s holding their hand through a particularly traumatic incident or helping them replace the alternator in their car, being there when they need it shows you remember what they did for you and how much it meant. It also shows that you’re willing to be just as good a friend to them as they were to you!

    17. Be there for them.

    Not every thank-you gesture has to be a grand public spectacle. Sometimes just giving them a place to come hang out when they’re lonely or showing up to offer them a sympathetic shoulder means the world to a person.

    18. Listen to them.

    Listening is almost as lost an art as the handwritten letter. When your friend or family member needs to talk, listen to them. Ask questions when appropriate, but just letting them know you’re there and paying attention to them to the exclusion of all else for a little while is a great way to say thank you for the times they listened to you.

    19. Say it in another language…or two…

    A simple thank you is great…but why not spice it up a little? Instead of just saying, “Thank you,” write or make a video of you telling them thank you in different languages. Some examples might be, “Gracias! Merci! Danke schoen! Spasibo! Mahalo!” and any other ways or languages you can think of. (The ones listed above are Spanish, French, German, Russian, and Hawaiian, in case you were wondering.) If you want to really get tricky about it, say a short phrase in each language that conveys why you’re thanking them!

    20. Show them some love.

    A simple touch, a hug, or helping out when they need it without being asked may be the most powerful gratitude message you can send. Offer to take the dogs for a walk, sit for the kids for a few hours, or run to the grocery store so they don’t have to. The little things are often the most important and meaningful. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still send a note, but sometimes your simple presence and willingness to help is all that really matters.

    Featured photo credit: Hanny Naibaho via unsplash.com

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