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Archive for August, 2018

Using Strategy to Prioritize Goals

Wednesday, August 29th, 2018

With the summer ending and fall nearing, it’s a logical time to evaluate priorities and determine how time can be spent and what can still be accomplished in 2018. There are endless things to do –– time with friends and family, work and professional growth, giving or volunteering time, hobbies… But how do we determine priorities and how our time should be spent?

In a recent book, The Myth of the Nice Girl: Achieving a Career You Love Without Becoming a Person You Hate, author Fran Hauser discusses the value in sitting down and analyzing the way you spend your time and determining if your choices are bringing you closer to your goals.

Hauser described a system she uses to prioritize her goals. She draws four squares on a piece of paper and in each square, she writes an important area of her life such as: Me, Friends & Family, Career, and the World. Then in each square she lists her top priorities related to each section, only allowing herself to write a maximum of three priorities per square, to prevent herself from overextension.

Participating in that exercise led her to an interesting realization. She wrote, “When I took a step back and looked at my squares, it was clear to me right away that my calendar and to-do list were not aligned with the priorities I had identified. I began shifting my schedule and commitments by saying no to and delegating some of the requests that were not aligned.”

This lesson is something that we can all take to heart –– are the things that we’re doing on a regular basis intentionally working toward our goals? Have we even identified our goals in each category? Understanding what the major goals in our lives are is a key component to deciding how to spend the time we have. The sooner goals are apparent, the faster we’re able to use our time in the most effective and efficient ways. How are you spending your time ?

Creativity Block: Inspiration vs. Deadlines

Wednesday, August 15th, 2018

We’ve all had epic moments when inspiration just hits. Whether it’s in the shower, at the gym or at work, the words and ideas seem to flow so quickly and eloquently. Conversely, moments when the deadline is knocking and there’s no creativity in sight are just as common.

So how do we press on to produce quality, creative and innovative content & ideas even on the days when the only creative idea you can think up is what you want for lunch? (if that!)

When the pressure is on, sometimes our ideas are less and less inspired. We start to factor everyone’s opinion in. What would a client want to see? What about a manager? How would co-workers and peers view the idea? While it’s not bad to have your end goal in mind, simply creating something that you think would “check all the boxes” may hinder your creative juices and prevent you from developing an idea of real value.

If it doesn’t make you a little nervous to press “send” on the idea – then chances are it’s not as innovative as you think. Be willing to discuss ideas that may seem out of the box. The worst thing that can happen is that no one likes it, but your bravery to try something different could be received well and your idea can be further developed through the brainstorming of others.

Don’t let the stress of an impending deadline leave you frozen. Take a walk, get some coffee and reevaluate what the main goals of your project are. The creativity will come.