Don’t check email first thing in the morning

I confess I do occasionally check email first thing morning. And I know quite a few other people who admit to it as well.

Now to be clear, I’m not necessarily talking about the quick-check that happens after you get up. Scan, delete, type out a couple fast replies, make sure nothing is blowing up.

The checking email first thing in the morning when you sit down at your desk – that’s where I see the trouble starting.

Soon, you’re hunting and pecking, scanning messages haphazardly, and answering the messages that feel least-risky. The easy ones.

You’re avoiding the harder ones, the ones that take extra work, extra thought, extra energy that you’re not willing to give right then.

And as you’re checking email, new ones are arriving. Soon, it’s 10 am and all you’ve done is react to this inbox of nothingness.

What if your routine was different? More deliberate and thoughtful? What if you decided not to let email rule your morning?

I read a terrific article recently that explained how most people check email first thing in the morning because they either have no idea what they should be doing that day OR they are avoiding the couple very important things that actually must be done.

Read the paragraph above again. Go ahead – I’ll wait.

Are you, gentle reader, using email as a source of procrastination? As a source of what to do next? If so, oy vey.

What if, instead, you knew the activities that brought you the most bang for your buck in business (marketing, writing, calling prospects, meeting with clients, dreaming up new ideas, playing, etc.)?

What if you spent those precious, clear-eyed morning hours accomplishing work that adds value to the world, creates money, and nurtures prospects and clients?

What if…?

And if you’re not sure how to even do this because you’re overwhelmed with email or viewing it as an annoyance that floods you with OPPs, then it’s time to call me. Schedule a Make Some Room Rendezvous and I’ll help you get clear on the important activities (rather the seemingly-urgent ones that gobble up your time). And we’ll make time for the important ones and either eliminate or delegate the rest.

Can’t wait to hear from you!

Make some room,

Angie

P.S. There are a limited number of Make Some Room Rendezvous sessions available for March and April. Schedule yours now, okay?

P.P.S. We are scheduling another Gmail 101 seminar for a Friday in April. Date to be announced soooooon.

What is the opposite of play?

If you said the opposite of play is work, I’d like you to hold that thought.

This weekend Nelson and I explored the miles of forests and rivers around our new home. We discovered (for a second time) Gorges State Park which has an astounding 20 waterfalls within the park’s boundaries. We visited DuPont State Forest and were reminded of the magnificence of Bridal Veil Falls, Triple Falls, and Hooker Falls. Our view of Lake Jocassee in the distance was excellent and made us wish for warmer weather paddling days ahead. So did finding several canoe launches for the French Broad River.

Sunday we ended up on a dirt road that was, in a couple places, really scary because of the snow and ice.It was all worth it when we discovered a lake I’d camped at and kayaked on nearly eight years ago! Our most exciting adventure happened during our drive up to the Blue Ridge Parkway Saturday to go hiking in the snow. On our way up, up, up, we slid off into a ditch.

Oooops.

Thankfully, there were a lot of other folks out playing in the snow and in short order they hitched a chain between our truck and theirs and pulled us out. We busted a tail light and dinged the bumper, but all’s well that ends well, yes?

With that list of goodness, let’s get back to the opposite of play.

This past year, I’ve been doing a lot of reading about whole-hearted people. About people who have well-balanced lives. About people who are happy.

Brené Brown has been top of my list. And interestingly, she discovered through her years of research that the opposite of play is NOT work.

The opposite of play is depression.

Think about that for a minute. Really think about it.

If the opposite of play is depression, then work can fit into either of those things, right?

Many of my clients fit play and work together:

* A video company team spends time together each day watching hilarious (or horrible) YouTube videos

*The book publishing company that has adopted the attitude of being SPARKly

*”WordPlay” will teach you how to be a better writer and has really fun and thought-provoking exercises to help

*Martha Beck, preeminent Life Coach says, “Play until it’s time to rest. Rest until it’s time to play.”

Sadly, I can go the opposite direction, too, and list people I know who put work and depression together as naturally as chocolate and peanut butter.

Rather than dwelling on the negative, let’s focus on play! Think about the last time you played. Nothing structured. You just got silly. Or you got lost. Or you got so into your hobby (or your work) that you lost track of time.

This playtime is essential for wellness. For being whole-hearted. For having a happy life.

Oftentimes during a Make Some Room Rendezvous, a client confesses they want more TIME. Time to play, time to work, time to read, or write or even to do nothing.

It’s such a gift to help clients get organized, systematized, and in control of their schedules and lives.

It’s such a gift to have those same clients call me and say, “Work is getting done. And I have more TIME now to do whatever it is I want.”

Make some room,

Angie

P.S. I’m scheduling the March Make Some Room Rendezvous sessions. I’ll do a few in April, too, and then they won’t be available until the autumn. Don’t miss out!

The case for moving

I’d like to make a case for moving. Even if being out of a routine is odd. Uncomfortable. Disorienting almost.

I was reminded of this during my move last week.

The purging. Deciding what to keep and what not to keep. The packing and wrapping.

And then I got sick. Like fall-down-and-sleep-on-the-couch-for-days sick.

And still…I love moving. I love having to go through my boxes and files yet again and decide what can stay and what can go.

Moving gives me new eyes. Moving helps me make fresh decisions. Bold decisions.

Decisions like: I haven’t touched this box of files in ages. Shred!

Decisions like: I am never going to use this particular shelf of office supplies. Donate!

And decisions like: there is simply too much clutter living on my desk. Purge!

I encourage you to regularly take a look at your office, your files, your bag or briefcase, and even your home. What you can shred, donate, or purge?

Here in North Carolina, we’re having a winter storm event. I say it’s the PERFECT time to stay indoors and look at your stuff with fresh eyes.

If you’re not sure where to start, not sure what to purge, or feel too much emotional attachment to your own stuff, then it’s time to call me for help.

You bring the willingness. I’ll bring the fresh eyes.

Make some room,

Angie

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