Ways to Stop Procrastinating

f you have a tendency to push things off, chances are you do it in your professional AND your social life. Best not to let it become a habit.

1. Schedule

Schedule your time appropriately. Have a calendar and mark down all important events and dates.Make daily schedules and to-do lists, but make sure you stick to them, or they become self-defeating, e.g., just something else to ignore.

Work on hard things when you’re most productive–i.e., if you’re a morning person, get to work at the crack of dawn; if your best time is after lunch, schedule a rough appointment then.

2. Visualize your time.

Calendaring your important dates and deadlines allows you to see visually what’s going on — when it’s hectic, when it isn’t. This allows you to be realistic in your planning.

3. Stick to your goals.

Break large projects down into smaller bites. If you have a big report due at the end of the week, schedule time to work on it every day.

4. Set deadlines and remember your kids are watching.

When you set a deadline, you put more direction and perspective into your goals. Challenge yourself with deadlines. Track yourself and use your discipline. You set them yourself, so it’s your pleasure to complete them!Another great impetus to improve in this area is–if you have kids, realize what an example you’re setting. Want your kids to grow up procrastinators? I think not! Monkey see, monkey do.

5. Get a coach. (Tell someone.)

This will give added accountability and support. If your friend knows you have a deadline coming up, he or she won’t expect you to do something with or for them at the same time. A coach can work with you over a period of months in a supportive atmosphere until you’ve formed new habits.

6. Post-it notes.

How did we live without them? Stick them on the dashboard, on the computer monitor, on your chair, on your office door, on the Wall Street Journal. Wherever you’re likely to run into them. They’ll jog your memory.

7. Use tech-reminders.

Palm Pilot, calendaring program, alarm clock, whatever it takes.

8. Don’t distract yourself.

Yes, you’re in control. Nothing’s distracting you, you’re allowing yourself to be distracted. Screen your phone calls, don’t go browsing on the Internet, let your email go, don’t check messages on your answering machine, bury the remote, and don’t go wandering down the hall at work. All those great distracters will still be there when you’re through and will be, yes, something nice to look forward to.

9. The carrot.

Reward yourself for a job well done. A good bit of the time, that’ll be the only form of reinforcement. Frankly I’ll kill the next person who tells me to “take a warm bath,” but I find all sorts of ways to tell myself “job well done” that suit just me. One thing I do is really sit back and appreciate what I need; when you learn to work for yourself, not for someone else, it removes a lot of potential wind from your sails. Why do I scrub baseboards? Because they look so darn good afterwards, and sometimes I’m the only one who knows.

10. The stick.

The carrot and the stick … reward and punishment. Okay, we aren’t kids any more, but don’t forget — it works. If you need a jolt to get out of the procrastination habit, do it yourself–better that than letting down a loved one, annoying your kids, getting fired, or losing friends. Be creative and mild, but make an impression on yourself. As if having to stay up all night to finish a procrastinated-project weren’t enough.

Originally submitted by Susan Dunn, M.A., Clinical Psychology, The original source is: Justin Becker, askmen.com.


Reasons for subscribing to podcasts

I’m volunteering for the pledge drive for WFAE Today I’ll be in between noon and 2 pm. As usual I’was way early. So, I’m sitting at the lobby of Hilton at University place waiting.

I didn’t want to watch Price is Right featuring 150 years old Bob Barker and a screen full of happy people yelling higher/lower.

So, I quickly refreshed my favorite podcasts and within seconds I got my shot of positive thoughts from Zig Ziglar, then caught up on Barak Obama‘s podcast.

Thank god for my trusted iBoook and iTunes now I have some control of what enters into my mind.

It’s 11:49 I better go.

10 Things to Know About Enthusiasm

“Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.”
– Ralph Waldo EmersonIn his article, “Enthusiasm Leads to Success,” Michael Bucci gives these tips:

1. Enthusiasm means you believe deeply in what your company is doing and you believe your job is important because it contributes to the cause.

Therefore you’re willing to work your butt off to achieve the company’s goals. They’re the same as yours!

originally submitted by Susan Dunn, M.A., Clinical Psychology, Momentum Coaching, who can be reached at sdunn@susandunn.cc

2. Enthusiasm is when you leap out of bed in the morning and attack your day with gusto.

It gives you zeal (“eagerness and ardent interest in pursuit of something — synonym: passion”) for the work you do and the people you work with.

3. Enthusiasm pushes you to improve and become a better person.

There may not be that much difference in jobs, just in our attitudes toward them. When you love what you do, it’s easy to get psyched up and get the job done.

4. Enthusiasm makes the difference between mediocre performance and outstanding performance.

What about the part of your work you dislike? All jobs have them. Well, this is where passion really comes into play.Say, for instance, that you love to negotiate deals but hate writing reports summarizing your potential deals. You may get turned down on good deals because your reports are bad.

The effect is substandard performance. You could be hitting 100% performance on the deals, but by only hitting 50% performance on your reports, you’ll be averaging out your performance to 75%.

5. Enthusiasm about a job or project or relationship usually translates into positive energy.

And positive energy is VERY attractive. If you’re excited about a project, you’ll be anxious to get started and get results. The mere fact of looking forward to your work will help make you more productive and effective. You’ll plan more effectively and pay more attention to detail. You’ll carry out your plan more carefully and aim for the best results possible. Don’t be mistaken; some people are satisfied with mediocrity.

6. Enthusiastic people are usually thrust into positions of leadership.

Leaders must have zest — charisma — in order to inspire others to follow. If you’re fervent about your work, you’ll be willing to do more and learn. This helps you get noticed.”Laugh, and the world laughs with you. Cry, and you cry alone.”

7. Enthusiasm at times needs to be manufactured. You can boost yours by reading about successful people.

Reading about how others achieved success helps you realize that you can too.

8. Enthusiasm is the one trait shared by most successful people.

Successful people are high on energy in their own special way, even the deceptively “laid back” Warren Buffett. They live and breathe the business and expect (and get) nothing less from their employees.

9. Enthusiasm breeds success and success in turn breeds success.

“Different people measure success in different ways,” says Bucci. “In my book, if you want to fail in life, just act apathetically. You’ll give off a negative, weak vibe and people will steer clear of you. Success will also steer clear of you.”

10. Enthusiasm is crucial to success.

If you want to succeed, you must be excited about your work, your life and your co-workers.

Banker to Poor Gets Nobel Prize

Who says you have to cheat and steal to make it big?

I listened Mr.Yunus’s imporessive story on NPR last year. I think it draws a great picture on what’s possible for any of us.

Banker to Poor Gets Nobel Prize: “

Arab News:

The Bangladeshi founder of a bank that specializes in helping the poor access microbusiness loans without collateral won the Nobel Peace Prize.

Muhammad Yunus, the 65-year-old economist who has been dubbed the ‘banker to the poor’, and his Grameen Bank that he founded in 1983 will share the $1.4 million prize.

In his acceptance speech, Yunus said he would use the prize money to develop high-nutrition low-cost food for the poor.

‘Every single individual on earth has both the potential and the right to live a decent life,’ the Nobel Committee said in its citation. ‘Across cultures and civilizations, Yunus and Grameen Bank have shown that even the poorest of the poor can work to bring about their own development.’

Loans go toward buying items such as cows to start a dairy, chickens for an egg business, or mobile phones to start businesses where villagers who have no access to phones pay a small fee to make calls. Grameen Bank was the first lender to hand out microcredit, giving very small loans to poor Bangladeshis who did not qualify for loans from conventional banks.

Photo by EPA.

(Via Business Opportunities Weblog.)

The Top 10 Strategies for Developing Leadership

Whether you are a corporate executive, manager, church leader, chamber director or teacher, leadership is the highest skill you can bring to the table, especially in these challenging times. Although we hear the term “born leader” often, more often than not leadership skills are developed rather than discovered. Here are a few ideas for developing your leadership skills.

1. Have a vision.

One reason leaders influence people and organizations is that they have a clear picture of what they want for their business, church, chamber or project. People who leave no doubt where it is they are going attract followers.

2. Be aware.

A leader knows his own strengths and motivations, but also his limitations and challenges. A leader is aware of others’ feelings, reactions, strengths and motivations. She is aware of what is “going on” around her.

3. Respond, don’t react.

Reactions are emotion driven and often lead to inappropriate words or actions. Strong leaders choose instead to be thoughtful and measured in responding to challenges and crises.

4. Know your values.

Leadership requires self-discipline. Before one can discipline oneself she must know what she stands for in the first place. When you are clear on your values and your standards, and live by them, you become character driven rather than emotion driven.

5. Maintain a positive attitude.

One reason Dr. Norman Vincent Peale’s book, “The Power of Positive Thinking,” is still one of the best read books in the world is that we all want to be inspired to think positively and know the power of positive thinking. The leader knows how to generate it within himself and to broadcast it.

6. Be enthusiastic.

Along with positive thinking, enthusiasm draws people to you and your cause. Napoleon Hill says that enthusiasm is the steam that drives the engine. The great John Wooden said, “without enthusiasm you can’t work up to your fullest ability.” Enthusiasm can’t be taught, but it can be caught. Catch fire and let others catch yours!

7. Speak well.

Tom Peters, in his book “Power,” writes that “being able to speak effectively is real power” and recommends Toastmasters. There’s a reason why this international organization of over 8000 clubs calls its training “Leadership and Communications.” Leadership and effective communications go hand-in-hand. Join Toastmasters!

8. Listen well.

One of the most attractive skills we can develop is one of truly listening to others, because it says we care. Yet, experts tell us we hear only 70% of what others are saying. Learn to listen not just with your ears, but with your eyes and your heart.

9. Don’t try to fix people.

Help people excel at what they are already good at. So advise Buckingham and Coffman in their book “First, Break All the Rules.” The reality is that we don’t all have the same potential and we can’t all be everything we want to be. The leader recognizes the strengths of others and helps them develop those strengths rather than trying to make them something they are not.

10. Get your needs met.

What must you have in your life in order to be complete? We’re talking needs, not wants, which are usually substitutes for our needs. We are told that most of our decisions in life are, at the root, needs driven. When you are not coming from a place of need, your integrity is intact and you are a more effective leader.

This piece was originally submitted by Bob Bone, who can be reached at Bob@BobBone.com

Free Your Mind!

Free Your Mind!: “Nothing is more powerful than the human mind and its ability to create. Our thinking defines our reality.

Sometimes our thinking creates thoughts which disempower us, however. Following these ten po”

(Via Distinctive Results.)

What is the best way to make your dreams come true?

What is the best way to make your dreams come true?: “Everyone has dreams. For thousands of people I met over the years they are some combination of Financial Freedom, Happy & Loving Family, Better Physique, Pain-Free Life, Some Form of Recognition (“

(Via Distinctive Results.)