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35 Things They Should Have Done A Better Job At Teaching Us In School

35 Things They Should Have Done A Better Job At Teaching Us In School

In school we learned, or at least we were taught the required curriculum. This was true for K-12 as well as college. But there are some things which everyone should know how to do that they didn’t focus on as much as they should. My list of 35 things they should have done a better job at teaching us in school consists of money, communication, attitude, philosophy, leadership, entrepreneurship, human relations, and every day things we all need to know.

1.  Never spend more than 70 percent of every dollar you make.

You have to have some kind of guide line/budget and 70 percent is a number that I have found works for people. Sure this number will change the older you get and the more money you make, but by sticking to this percent early in life will set you up for later in life.

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    2.  What to do with the other 30 percent.

    Take 10 percent and donate it. If you get in the habit of donating and giving back you will always do this and it gets you in the habit early in life. Then take the next 10 percent and save it. Take the last 10 percent and invest it. Invest it into something that generates a return.

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      3.  Stay out of debt.

      We all know this but we didn’t talk about it to the depth that we should while in school. Find a way every time to pay with cash, never borrow money.

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        4.  Become Genuinely Interested in other people.

        When you become genuinely interested in others it shows. The other person sees that you care about them and want to know more about them.

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          5.  Try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view.

          Sure we all think that we do this. However, think about the last time you were in a disagreement with someone, maybe it was your spouse or a colleague at work. You were probably more focused on being right than trying to honestly see things from their point of view. When you try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view it shows that you care about them.

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            6.  Listen more than you talk.

            Think about the last conversation you had with someone, who talked a lot. When you let the other person talk more you develop a better relationship with them. Most people love to talk, let them do the talking and just listen, you never know what you will learn.

            listening

              7.  Pay cash if you can.

              Rich people have enough to pay cash. If you can pay cash you can usually negotiate your terms and a better deal.

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                8.  Profits are better than wages.

                Being that I am motivated by money this would have made sense to me. Earning a wage, especially a high wage is great, but when you own something and you can earn a profit from it is better than wages. Whether it is your own company or you have equity in a company, profits are always better than wages.

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                  9.  Get into the habit of spending 30 minutes a day exercising.

                  Sure in school you have gym class. But as you get older you have to make this a priority in your life. Nothing can happen if you don’t have good health.

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                    10.  Find a mentor.

                    Talk to people that do what you would like to do and spend lots of time with them learning from them.

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                      11.  Read more books.

                      Never stop reading books. After you get out of school you can read the ones you want to read and not the one you have to read.

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                        12.  Soon, the people in your high school won’t matter.

                        They should tell you that the people you are in high school with will most likely not matter to you 5 years from the last day of high school. Lebron left Cleveland and won two championships.

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                          13.  Pick one area that you can become extraordinary in and never do anything else.

                          Decide early what you want to be great at. Then put all of your eggs in that basket to become the best in it.

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                            14.  Keep a journal.

                            Take notes of the lessons and the wins in your life in a journal and then look back on them for future guidance on how to have more wins and less lessons.

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                              15.  Do whatever you can to get exposed to sales at a young age.

                              The skills you learn as a sales person will prepare you for everything in life. All organizations need people who can sell, so you are always marketable and the skills you learn as a sales person will serve you well in almost any other position you attempt to work in as well.

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                                16.  Don’t ever try to impress others.

                                The only person that matters in life is you and your family. Be the best to yourself and to them. Don’t try to live up to what other people want you to be.

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                                  17.  Time is more valuable than money, you can earn more money, but you can’t earn more time.

                                  We all have 24 hours in a day, use your time wisely and be sure to invest your time into something worthwhile.

                                  time-vs-money

                                    18.  Fail as quickly as you possibly can.

                                    Try as many things as possible early in your life, even if you fail. The more failures you have, the more opportunities you have to find out what you want to do and enjoy doing it.

                                    failure-in-business

                                      19.  While making decisions think about the impact of that decision 1,2,3 or even 5 or 10 years into the future.

                                      All decisions have consequences and costs associated with them. The more you can think about how the decision affects your future, the better decisions you will make in the present.

                                      thinking-about-the-future

                                        20.  Develop your personal brand.

                                        Decide early on who and what you want to be and then live your life accordingly.

                                        Personal-Branding-MarketingThink.com-@GerryMoran

                                          21.  Your network is one of your most valuable possesions.

                                          Meet lots of people and maintain those relationships, you never know when you may need those relationships.  

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                                            22.  Check the oil in your car.

                                            Unless you were born with a silver spoon, you will need to know how to ensure your car has enough oil so you can keep it running.

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                                              23.  Learn how to cook on the grill.

                                              Eventually you will want to have people over for a grill out, and then you won’t want to kill anyone with undercooked food.

                                              Summer-grill-party-BBQ-jpg

                                                24.  Learn how to changing a flat tire.

                                                Never get stuck with a flat tire. To change a tire is easy to learn and everyone eventually has a flat tire.

                                                a_man_changing_a_flat_tire_on_a_car_royalty_free_080707-057154-462016

                                                  25.  Don’t be a complainer, ever.

                                                  I have never been around anyone who likes to be around someone who likes to complain. If you want to be a person people want to be around, don’t complain.

                                                  Complaint-Department

                                                    26.  Always do more than you get paid for.

                                                    Never do just what is asked of you, but always do more. This will allow you to be different because most people don’t do this. You will see the benefits in your career and in your income.

                                                    going-beyond-competition

                                                      27.  Ask for what you want.

                                                      Some people just never ask, so they never get anything. Getting into the habit of asking even when you know you won’t get what you are asking for, allows you to create the habit of asking which is the skill that is important.

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                                                        28.  Never post pictures online when you have been drinking.

                                                        This didn’t apply when I was growing up, but it does now more than ever. Put your smart phone away if you have been drinking, nothing good ever happens with your phone while drinking, unless you are calling for a ride.

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                                                          29.  Seek excellence in everything you do.

                                                          Sure we all learned that we should always do the best we can do. But excellence is different, excellence makes you better than average. Don’t be average.

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                                                            30.  Find out what your strengths are.

                                                            I remember teachers saying that I needed to focus on developing some of the areas I was weak in. Identify your strengths and passions as soon as you can and focus on them.

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                                                              31. Give credit to others.

                                                              Nobody likes someone who takes all the credit. Even when you have done something to be recognized for find a way to give credit to someone else who helped you get there.

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                                                                32.  Get to your point across.

                                                                Considering most people have a 9 second attention span, getting your point across in any interaction is critical. Don’t take too much time to make a simple point.

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                                                                  33.  Use people’s names.

                                                                  Use a person’s name whenever you can. At the restaurant, the bank, and anywhere else. This requires you to ask for their name and remember it. Remember that a persons name is the sweetest sound in any language to that person.

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                                                                    34.  Tip correctly.

                                                                    Yes, there are percentages in any business that you should adhere to. My advice is always tip for the service you received. If it was great service, tip more than normal, if it was average service tip an average percentage, and if the service is bad, ask for a manager. You are doing the business a favor by telling them.

                                                                    Tipping-the-USA

                                                                      35.  Know that fear is just an emotion.

                                                                      “Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.” – Steve Jobs

                                                                      I think this quote sums it up on how you should approach your fear.

                                                                      steve-jobs-quote

                                                                        Now that we know these things we have to put our knowledge into action. How are you going to start applying these 35 things they should have done a better job at teaching us in school?

                                                                        Featured photo credit: Why didn’t I learn this? via thingsiwishiwouldhavelearnedinhighschool.com

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                                                                        Published on January 16, 2019

                                                                        How to Effectively Manage a Heavy Workload at Work

                                                                        How to Effectively Manage a Heavy Workload at Work

                                                                        We’re all busy, but sometimes we go through periods where the work piles up and it seems like it might never end.

                                                                        You might have such a heavy workload that it feels too intimidating to even start.

                                                                        You may have said yes to some or too many projects, and now you’re afraid you won’t be able to deliver.

                                                                        That’s when you need to take a step back, take a deep breath, and start looking at what’s working and what’s not working.

                                                                        Here’re 13 strategies you can use to get out from under your overwhelming workload:

                                                                        1. Acknowledge You Can’t Do It All

                                                                        Many of us have a tendency to think we can do more than we actually can. We take on more and more projects and responsibility and wear numerous hats.

                                                                        We all have the opportunity to have and take on more work than we can reasonably expect to get done. Unfortunately, our workload is not static. Even now, while you are reading this article, I’m guessing that your inbox is filling up with fresh new tasks.

                                                                        To make real, effective progress, you have to have both the courage and resourcefulness to say, “This is not working”. Acknowledge that you can’t do it all and look for better solutions.

                                                                        At any given time in your life, there are likely many things that aren’t going according to plan. You have to be willing to be honest with yourself and those around you about what’s not working for you, both personally and professionally.

                                                                        The more you exercise your ability to tell the truth about what’s working and what’s not working, the faster you’ll make progress.

                                                                        2. Focus on Your Unique Strengths

                                                                        Whether you’re an entrepreneur, a leader or working as part of a team, every individual has unique strengths they can bring to the table.

                                                                        The challenge is that many people end up doing things that they’re simply not very good at.

                                                                        In the pursuit of reaching your goals or delivering a project, people end up doing everything themselves or taking on things that don’t play to their unique strengths. This can result in frustration, overwhelm and overwork.

                                                                        It can mean projects taking a lot longer to complete because of knowledge gaps, or simply not utilizing the unique strengths of other people you work with.

                                                                        It is often not about how to complete this project more effectively but who can help deliver this project.

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                                                                        So, what are your unique strengths that will ensure your workload is delivered more effectively? Here’re some questions to help you reflect:

                                                                        • Are you a great strategist?
                                                                        • Are you an effective planner?
                                                                        • Is Project Management your strength?
                                                                        • Is communication and bringing people together your strength?
                                                                        • Are you the ideas person?
                                                                        • Is Implementation your strength?

                                                                        Think about how you can bring the biggest value to your work and the projects you undertake.

                                                                        3. Use the Strengths of Your Team

                                                                        One of the simplest ways to manage your workload effectively is to free up your time so you bring your highest level of energy, focus and strengths to each project.

                                                                        Delegation or better teamwork is the solution.

                                                                        Everyone has unique strengths. It’s essential to think teamwork rather than working in isolation to ensure projects can be completed effectively. Besides, every time you give away a task or project that doesn’t play to your unique strengths, you open up an opportunity to do something you’re more talented at. This will empower both yourself and those around you.

                                                                        Rather than taking on all the responsibilities yourself, look at who you can work with to deliver the best results possible.

                                                                        4. Take Time for Planning

                                                                        “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe”. – Abraham Lincoln

                                                                        One hour of effective planning could save hours of time. Rather than just rushing in and getting started on projects, take the time to map everything in.

                                                                        You can take the time to think about:

                                                                        • What’s the purpose of the project?
                                                                        • How Important is it?
                                                                        • When does it need to be delivered by?
                                                                        • What is the best result and worst result for this project?
                                                                        • What are the KPIs?
                                                                        • What does the project plan and key milestones look like?
                                                                        • Who is working on this project?
                                                                        • What is everyone’s responsibilities?
                                                                        • What tolerances can I add in?
                                                                        • What are the review stages?
                                                                        • What are the challenges we may face and the solutions for these challenges?

                                                                        Having absolute clarity on the project, the project deliverables and the result you want can save a lot of time. It also gets you clear on the priorities and timelines, so you can block out the required amount of time to focus and concentrate.

                                                                        5. Focus on Priorities

                                                                        Not everything is a priority, although it can often feel, in the moment, that it is.

                                                                        Whatever you’re working on, there is always the Most Urgent, Important or Most Valuable projects or tasks.

                                                                        One tool you can use to maximize your productivity and focus on your biggest priorities is to use the Eisenhower Matrix. This strategic tool for taking action on the things that matter most is simple. You separate your actions based on four possibilities:

                                                                        1. Urgent and important (tasks you will do immediately).
                                                                        2. Important, but not urgent (tasks you will schedule to do later).
                                                                        3. Urgent, but not important (tasks you will delegate to someone else).
                                                                        4. Neither urgent nor important (tasks that you will eliminate).

                                                                        James Clear has a great description on how to use the Eisenhower Matrix: How to be More Productive By Using the Eisenhower Box

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                                                                          The method I use with my coaching clients is to ask them to lay out their Top Five priorities for the day. Then to start with the most important priority first. At the end of the day, you review performance against these priorities.

                                                                          If you didn’t get everything accomplished, start the next day with your number one priority.

                                                                          If you are given additional task/projects during the day, then you will need to gauge their importance V the other priorities.

                                                                          6. Take Time Out

                                                                          To stay on top of a heavy workload, it’s important to take time out to rest and recuperate.

                                                                          If your energy levels are high and your mind and body is refreshed and alert, you are in more of a peak state to handle a heavy workload.

                                                                          Take time out of your day to go for a walk or get some exercise in. Leave early when possible and spend time with people who give you a lot of energy.

                                                                          In the background, it’s essential to get a good night’s sleep and eat healthily to sharpen the mind.

                                                                          Take a look at this article learn about The Importance of Scheduling Downtime.

                                                                          7. Maintain a Healthy Work-Life Balance

                                                                          Maintaining a healthy work-life balance can be tough. The balance we all crave is very different from one another.

                                                                          I’ve written before about 13 Work Life Balance Tips for a Happy and Productive Life. Working longer and harder doesn’t mean achieving more, especially if you have no time to spend with the people that matter most. The quality of who you are as a person, the relationships you have, the time you spend in work, deciding on what matters most is completely within your control.

                                                                          Work-life balance is about finding peace within yourself to be fully present, wherever you are, whether that be in the office or at home, right now. It’s about choosing what matters most and creating your own balanced life.

                                                                          If you feel there is not enough balance, then it may be time to make a change.

                                                                          8. Stop Multitasking

                                                                          Multi-tasking is a myth. Your brain simply can’t work effectively by doing more than one thing at a time—at least more than one thing that requires focused attention.

                                                                          So get your list of priorities (see earlier point), do the most important thing first, then move to the next item and work down your list.

                                                                          When you split your focus over a multitude of different areas, you can’t consistently deliver a high performance. You won’t be fully present on the one task or project at hand.

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                                                                          If you allocate blocked time and create firm boundaries for specific activities and commitments, you won’t feel so overwhelmed or overworked with everything you have to do.

                                                                          9. Work in Blocks of Time

                                                                          To keep your energy up to produce your best results it’s essential to take regular breaks.

                                                                          I use the 60-60-30 method myself and teach it to my coaching clients.

                                                                          Work on a project for a sustained period of 50 minutes.

                                                                          Then take a 10-minute break. This could be taking a walk, having a healthy snack or just having a conversation with someone.

                                                                          Then continue to work on the project for a further 50 minutes.

                                                                          Then take another 10-minute break.

                                                                          Then take a complete 30-minute break to unplug from the work. This could be time for a proper lunch, a quick bit of exercise, reading or having a walk.

                                                                          By simply taking some time out, your energy levels stay up, the quality of your work improves and you reduce the risk of becoming burned out.

                                                                          10. Get Rid of Distractions

                                                                          Make an estimation on how many times you are distracted during an average working day. Now take that number and multiply it by 25. According to Gloria Mark in her study on The Cost of Interrupted Work, it takes us an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to return to the original task after interruption.[1]

                                                                          “Our research has shown that attention distraction can lead to higher stress, a bad mood and lower productivity.”

                                                                          Distractions don’t just take up your time during the distraction, they can derail your mental progress and focus for almost 25 minutes. So, if you are distracted 5 times per day, you could be losing almost 2 hours every day of productive work and almost 10 hours every week.

                                                                          If you have an important project to work on, find a space where you won’t be distracted, or try doing this.

                                                                          11. Commit Focused Time to Smaller Tasks

                                                                          You know sometimes, you need to simply tackle these tasks and take action on them. But there’s always something more pressing.

                                                                          Small tasks can often get in the way of your most important projects. They sit there on your daily To Do list but are often forgotten about because of more important priorities or because they hold no interest for you. But they take up mental energy. They clutter your mind.

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                                                                          Commit to spending a specific period of time completing all the small tasks you have on your To Do list. It will give you peace of mind and the space to focus more on your bigger priorities.

                                                                          12. Take a Time Audit

                                                                          Do you know exactly where your time is going each day? Are you spending too long on certain projects and tasks to the detriment of bigger opportunities?

                                                                          Spend a bit of time to analyze where you are spending your time. This insight will amaze you and give you the clarity to start adjusting where you focus your time and on what projects.

                                                                          You can start by taking a piece of paper and creating three columns:

                                                                          Column A is Priority Work. Column B is Good Work. Column C is low value work or stuff.

                                                                          Each day, write down the project or task and the time spent on each. Allocate that time to one of the columns.

                                                                          At the end of the week, record the total time spent in each column.

                                                                          If you are spending far too much time on certain types of work, look to change things so your focused time is in Column B and C.

                                                                          13. Protect Your Confidence

                                                                          It is essential to protect our confidence to ensure we don’t get overwhelmed, stressed and lose belief.

                                                                          When you have confidence as a daily resource, you are in a better position to problem solve, learn quicker, respond to anything, adjust to anything, and achieve your biggest opportunities.

                                                                          Confidence gives you the ability to transform fear into focused and relaxed thinking, communication, and action. This is key to put your mind into a productive state.

                                                                          When confidence is high, you can clearly see the possibilities at hand and create strategies to take advantage of them, or to solve the challenges you face each day.

                                                                          Final Words

                                                                          A heavy workload can be tough to deal with and can cause stress, burnout and ongoing frustration.

                                                                          The key is to tackle it head on, rather than let it go on and compound the long-term effects. Hopefully, you can take action on at least one of these tips.

                                                                          If it gets too much, and negatively affects your physical and mental health, it may be time to talk to someone. Instead of dealing with it alone and staying unhappier, resentful and getting to a point where you simply can’t cope, you have to make a change for your own sanity.

                                                                          Featured photo credit: Hannah Wei via unsplash.com

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