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5 Ways to get out of faffing mode

5 Ways to get out of faffing mode
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    Faffing – The art of doing something without achieving anything”

    Faffing affects all of us, in all areas of life and it means doing something without achieving an outcome. It affects business, personal life, writing, internet surfing, and domestic life.

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    To give you an example: As I am writing an article I am aware that I have to do a bit of stumbling in order to keep up my traffic from Stumbleupon, so I click on the Firefox button and stumble for a few minutes before coming back to the article. Then an e-mail might come in and I think, “I better check that in case it’s important” so off I wander over to Outlook and check my e-mails, I then get caught in an e-mail which has a link to something interesting. I then get off Firefox and back to the article. My sons come downstairs and ask me a question, I give them an answer, and then back to the article. Something on TV catches my eye so I start watching TV. The cycle can be never ending and you could start something and make a 1-hour job last all day. This article should only take an hour to write and edit and put on the blog, I’ll tell you how long it took at the end.

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    5 ways to getting out of faffing mode

    1. Know your outcome – Always keeping the goal in mind is not as easy as it sounds. I find it helpful to verbally remind myself what my outcome is: “Got to finish washing the dishes”, that kind of thing.
    2. Turn off all things that may distract you – This includes; TV, radio, e-mails, instant messengers, Firefox, internet, the kids (if only!), and anything else that usually distracts you from getting the job done.
    3. Allow yourself time to finish the job at hand – Don’t try and cram two hours of work into one hour. If you do this you will end up frustrated and possibly do some sloppy work.
    4. Let others know your timescale – I have told my wife and children that I will be writing for about 90 minutes so if it’s possible, not to disturb me for this length of time. This way the responsibility is mine to get the article done and I can’t blame anybody else for it not being completed in time.
    5. Allow time for a quick reward – I always reward myself for getting any job done, whether it be the dishes, washing the car, writing, or anything that I need to have completed. This is usually in the form of a quick cup of tea and a read of a book.

    Okay how long did it take me to write, edit and upload this article? It took 92 minutes, that’s not bad. I’m off to have a quick cuppa.

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    Last Updated on August 6, 2020

    Why Working 9 to 5 Is Outdated

    Why Working 9 to 5 Is Outdated

    Bristol is the most congested city in England. Whenever I have to work at the office, I ride there, like most of us do. Furthermore, I always make sure to go at off hours; otherwise, the roads are jam-packed with cars, buses, bikes, even pedestrians. Why is that? Because everyone is working a traditional 9 to 5 work day.

    Where did the “9 to 5” Come From?

    It all started back in 1946. The United States government implemented the 40 hour work week for all federal employees, and all companies adopted the practice afterwards. That’s 67 years with the same schedule. Let’s think about all the things that have changed in the 67 years:

    • We went to the moon, and astronauts now live in space on the ISS.

    • Computers used to take up entire rooms and took hours to make a single calculation. Now we have more powerful computers in our purses and back pockets with our smartphones.

    • Lots of employees can now telecommute to the office from hundreds, and even thousands of miles away.

    In 1946 a 9-5 job made sense because we had time after 5pm for a social life, a family life. Now we’re constantly connected to other people and the office, with the Internet, email on our smartphones, and hashtags in our movies and television shows. There is no downtime anymore.

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    Different Folks, Different Strokes

    Enjoying your downtime is an important part of life. It recharges your batteries and lets you be more productive. Allowing people to balance life and work can provide them with much needed perspective and motivation to see the bigger picture of what they are trying to achieve.

    Some people are just more productive when they’re working at their optimal time of day, after feeling well rested and personally fulfilled.  For some that can be  from 4 a.m. to 9 a.m; for others, it could be  2 p.m. to 7 p.m.

    People have their own rhythms and routines. It would be great if we could sync our work schedule to match. Simply put, the imposed 8-hour work day can be a creativity and morale killer for the average person in today’s world.

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    Productivity and Trust Killer

    Fostering creativity among employees is not always an easy endeavor, but perhaps a good place to start is by simply not tying their tasks and goals to a fixed time period. Let them work on their to-do list at their own pace, and chances are, you’ll get the best out of your employee who feels empowered instead of babysat.

    That’s not to say that you should  allow your team to run wild and do whatever they want, but restricting them to a 9 to 5 time frame can quickly demoralize people. Set parameters and deadlines, and let them work at their own creative best with the understanding that their work is crucial to the functioning of the entire team.

    Margaret Heffernan, an entrepreneur who previously worked in broadcasting, noted to Inc that from her experience, “treating employees like grown-ups made it more likely that they would behave the same way.” The principle here is to have your employees work to get things done, not to just follow the hands on the clock.

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    A Flexible Remote Working Policy

    Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer famously recalled all her remote workers, saying she wanted to improve innovation and collaboration, but was that the right decision? We’ve all said that we’re often more productive in a half day working from home than a full day working in the office, right? So why not let your employees work remotely from home?

    There are definitely varying schools of thought on remote working. Some believe that innovation and collaboration can only happen in a boardroom with markers, whiteboards and post-it notes and of course, this can be true for some. But do a few great brainstorms trump a team that feels a little less stressed and a little more free?

    Those who champion remote working often note that these employees are not counting the clock, worried about getting home, cooking dinner or rushing through errands post-work. No one works their 9-5 straight without breaks here and there.  Allowing some time for remote working means employees can handle some non-work related tasks and feel more accomplished throughout the day. Also, sometimes we all need to have a taste of working in our pajamas, right?

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    It’ll be interesting to see how many traditional companies and industries start giving their employees more freedom with their work schedule. And how many end up rescinding their policies like Yahoo did.

    What are your thoughts of the traditional 9-5 schedule and what are you doing to help foster your team’s productivity and creativity? Hit the comments and let us know.

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