Instead of recording my own podcast for today, we decided to turn the tables. Lisa Goodgame interviewed me for the Women. Connected. podcast by TBW. Listen in, and you'll hear about the power of intention, why making one change at a time can be incredibly important, how technology can support building and maintaining effective habits, how to mimic systems that work for others to build your own structure, and why a laptop bag is the most important work accessory you need. If you listen to the end of the episode, you'll notice that I made a specific recommendation about how to improve your habits. Today, I decided to take it a step further.
In this episode of The Habit Chef Podcast, I'll share 3 preemptive measures, 3 processing tactics, and 3 advanced strategies for mastering your email and getting to Inbox Zero. Plus, your teams will work better, and you'll accomplish more of your goals. Listen in, and you’ll learn why there's an inverse relationship between email and productivity, why email causes us so much stress, and which three proactive habits will eliminate most unnecessary email, and which three processing habits will help you organize your important communications, and which three strategies will improve your leadership and help you achieve your goals.
Along with the essential habits for getting things done, you'll need a dedicated cockpit to keep you focused and organized. There are hundreds of options (in addition to ol' fashioned pen and paper), and I've narrowed it down to a few of my favorites. To make the cut, the tools have to be accessible across platforms and via mobile and desktop devices, have sharing capabilities for teams, and be intuitively simple. Here's an overview of the top four task/project management tools, along with their strengths and weaknesses for easy comparison. (Plus, I'll even share my personal favorite.)
Is your kitchen and laundry room stocked with all the latest conveniences? Or do you still do everything by hand? I'm guessing not. But lots of us are still trying to work that way. There's only one problem. The world has changed, and your work has too. You're expected to worker harder, faster, and smarter. You're expected to know more and find anything at a moment's notice. You're expected to communicate down the hall and around the world. It's tough to keep up. But there is something you can do: Upgrade your appliances. Let's start 2013 with three shiny new tools. We'll walk through them together.
After last week's post about deciding what to learn, I received several emails asking what skills I thought were most important. Certainly, skills like project management, public speaking, and self awareness are essential to building a career or a business. I doubt you're surprised by any of those. So, here's a list that might surprise you. Here are five skills you probably don't even know you need. If you don't have them, they're likely holding back your career (or your business), organizations you volunteer with, and even your parenting.
I discovered Brett Kelly in the summer of 2010 through a mutual love of Evernote. I'd played with the service and realized I was only scratching the surface of its potential. A quick Google search turned up his recently released ebook, Evernote Essentials. I bought it immediately and felt my memory and organizational capacity expand overnight. At the time, I was part of business project making an early attempt at online learning. Knowing what a difference Evernote and his guide had made in my life, I cold-emailed Brett to ask if we could use his guide as the foundation for a new course for our students. He agreed immediately and even shared our course with his network - which was significantly larger than ours. Over the years, we kept in touch through Twitter and met in person at the first World Domination Summit in July 2011. There, I learned that we also shared a common faith and affinity for tattoos. But it wasn't until I read Chris Guillebeau's $100 Startup that I knew the full story. After several stressful years of working opposite schedules with his wife to make ends meet, Brett had the idea for his ebook and worked for months to make it "exactly right." Right before the guide went on sale, Brett and Joana made a pact. If it sold at least $10,000 worth of copies, she could quit her job and be able to stay home with their kids full-time. Eleven days later . . .
Chalk it up to ADD or a bad habit of multitasking, but my brain often resembles a hound on a walk through the park. Squirrel! Another one - over there! Look! To get back on track, I must eliminate those squirrels. Mentally, I'll tell myself that it's time for a hunt. Here's my three step approach.