balanced – how to take control and manage yourself and your true value
Keep focused on your key goals.
Don’t be distracted from achieving those things that really matter to you.
Work smarter rather than harder.
Don’t confuse long hours with effectiveness or efficiency. Moving paper around
does not create value. Focus on the urgent and important.
Avoid the use of negative
internal dialogues such as ‘I can’t…’ and ‘Yes, But!!!’ Stop saying ‘I will
try!’ Instead say ‘I will’ – we often defeat ourselves before we begin. Choose
your internal messages carefully – eradicate negative thoughts.
Avoid using words and
expressions such as ‘ought’ and ‘should have’ – they infer feelings of guilt
and anxiety. Instead use the words ‘I could have’ and ‘I had the choice’ – they
are more liberating and neutral in their effect on you – they put you in
control rather than make you feel guilty.
Make sure you are achieving the
right balance between your personal and work life.
Develop your ability to manage
stress. If necessary attend a training programme or read a book on stress
management. Be clear as to what triggers stress in your role.
For each trigger develop coping
strategies to manage them:
Stand back from the situation
and find time to collect your thoughts and response.
Change or avoid the situations
you find stressful.
Change your internal response to
the stress trigger ‘I will no longer allow myself to react in that way!’
Change your working hours – begin work earlier
and finish earlier.
Vary your breaks during the day – take time
out to refresh yourself – particularly when the pressure is on.
Stay fit by exercising regularly
– 20 minutes a day is all it takes.
Learn to relax and take time out
for yourself. Reward yourself and do something that you enjoy – playing sport
or some other hobby.
Avoid work becoming routine or a
‘chore’ vary your routine and do something different on a regular basis – seek
out new experiences.
Keep a record of your regular
work tasks. Prioritize those tasks that are critical. Ask yourself whether you
are getting the best results in these areas? Stay focused on the vital few and
avoid trying to do everything.
Review the decisions you make
over a couple of weeks and analyze how much time you devote to each one. Are
you spending sufficient time on the important things?
When making decisions ask
yourself either the cost of getting it wrong or the benefit of getting it
right. Allocate sufficient time based on your answer.
Operate a daily mental
‘development diary’. At the end of each day ask yourself:
What did I learn today?
What have I done that was new?
What have I accomplished?
What must I do tomorrow?
Say “NO” to people who
place unreasonable demands on you.
Make telephone calls rather than
spend time writing long e-mails and letters.
Try to reduce the length of all
your written communications – e-mails, letters, minutes, memos, reports,
instructions by 50%.
Seek out opportunities to make
presentations and develop your skills in this vital business area.
Ask close friends to give you
real feedback on your performance during meetings, presentations etc.
In preparing for a difficult
interview, presentation or negotiation, practice or role play it with a close
colleague. Get their reactions to your proposed approach.
After attending any training
programme make sure you review your notes within a week of your return, make a
record of any points that you regard as especially important and that you will
apply in your organization. Produce a short report for your manager – better
still make a presentation to the management team on some recommendations that
the business should consider taking.