Tag Archive: email



Mercury Retro-Refocus Regroup RenewOn May 18th we entered Mercury retrograde and the energy will be present until June 11th and we’ll be in it’s shadow for a short time afterward. Mercury Retrograde occurs when the planet appears to be moving backwards, into its shadow, which causes communication, scheduling, transportation and even our judgment to become a bit cloudy or error prone.

You can use this retrograde to stay productive and continue moving forward. With things in the outer realm being challenged, it’s smart to plan for delays and errors. It’s also a good idea to double check due dates, meeting times and to make sure communications you’ve sent are received and clear. You may find that you have email issues during this time as well. It has been said that this is not a good time for planning new things, but rather a time to continue planning things that have already be started, or to revisit projects that aren’t yet complete. Be sure that you have your technology covered, meaning that your files, contacts, etc are backed up. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had clients and others tell me that they don’t have their files and other important information backed up. I’ve also witnessed people go through that painful process of losing all of the files on their laptop or all of their contacts and having to start from scratch. Definitely not somewhere you want to be

While things in the outer realm may be challenging during this time, this is a great time retreat within. To make the time to reflect for introspection and to work on ourselves. As you take that retreat, look to see where your habits have you hung up and what steps it will take for you release them. Don’t look at your habits as good or bad, just simply that they are either serving you or they’re not. What do you see hinders you on a daily basis when it comes to getting things off your to-do list? How can you shift things to create a habit that will support you. Engage someone else if you feel you need accountability in making that shift.

Use the energy that is present now while we’re in retrograde to refocus. Maybe you’re off track on a few things or feel as though you haven’t paid enough attention to something. Now is the time to get back on track. Regroup in your outer realm as well as the inner and allow things to be renewed so that you’re back on point and you can use this period to organize or reorganize your office, and restructure things by getting systems in place to shore up your foundation. This can be a very empowering time if you allow it to be. Refocus, regroup and renew to empower your productivity.

 


SaneBoxIf you’re like most, email might be a bit out of control with hundreds or maybe even thousands of emails, most of them unopened. You have lists you’ve subscribed to sending email and probably some unsolicited items too. They’re coming in so fast you just can’t handle it. You’ve tried hitting your inbox to remedy the overgrown number, but to no avail and if you do get the number down, they come right back at you with what seems to be even more determination.

If you can relate to this, you might want to consider using SaneBox. It’s an add on tool that works with your current email client to keep your inbox from being out of control. You set the rules and it follows them. Gotta love that! It organizes your email and makes sure that you get the important stuff by prioritizing important emails and summarizing the rest. There’s nothing to download and nothing new to learn.

It uses smart filtering and other productivity features live One Click Unsubscribe that lets you drag an email into the “SaneBlackHole” folder, and you’ll never hear from that sender again. To add to the productivity mix, SaneBox notifies you when an email you sent isn’t replied to by a certain time, so you can follow up. Additionally, it allows you to place an email in a Snooze Folder and then SaneBox will place it back in your Inbox when it’s convenient for you. With all these great features, it’s a great solution for ending your inbox insanity. Get more details at the SaneBox website.

 

 


WomanSittingHoldingClockAs a Productivity Coach I’ve seen many things over the years and there are mistakes that I’ve seen people making all the while.In this post I’m going to share three that are quite common. First and foremost, you’re checking your email first thing in the morning. STOP IT! Now I know this is a hard one for some of you because you live in your inbox. Close your email when you’re not checking and replying to it. Plain and simple, email is a distraction and a major time suck!

Instead of diving head first into your inbox at the beginning of your work day, is to check your email 1½ -2 hours after you start your day. Use the first 1.5 to 2 hours of your day to focus on your top priority for the day. By the end of that period of time, you’ll either be done with that task, or you’ll have a good dent in it. This makes the first couple of hours of your day more productive instead of you fishing around in your inbox and having a priority sit on hold.

Working against your grain is one of the worst things that you can do to yourself. It zaps your level of productivity. What works is to learn your personal energy cycles and use them to make your day productive. If you don’t know what time of day is best for you, start taking notice to see when your physical and mental energy is highest. You might find that you’re not at your best until almost noon and that you can work past dinner time before you start to fade. Make the shift in your day and use that time for the things that require you to be at your best. Use the other time in your day for things that don’t require so much of you like returning phone calls.

The third mistake is not spending enough time on top priorities. You can be busy all day and still not get the important things done. You’ve got to know what your priorities are before you get in motion. Look at the projects and goals on your agenda and determine their priority before anything related to them hits your daily list or calendar. If you know your priorities prior to adding them to your activities, you know what your focus should be on and therefore, you can focus your time on your priorities so that the important things get done.

Those are just three of the mistakes that you could be making when it comes to productivity. Take action to shift from what you’re currently doing and you’ll see a difference.

 


BusyBusinessWomanThe equinox is here and summer is officially over. The kids are back to school, the flip flops and sunglasses are off and business is back in full swing.  This is the time to refocus on your goals and desires and be ready to bring in the fall harvest.

If you have children who just went back to school, you prepared for that—shopping for supplies and clothes or packing the car to send them off to college.  Maybe you planned your summer vacation or fun activities.  Just as you did that, you have to prepare yourself for getting back to business too.  When summer was in full swing most people cut back so they can enjoy themselves and their family and routines and systems got tossed to the side.  Now it’s time to pick it all back up and get the ball rolling again, which can be a lot easier said than done.

It can be hard to regroup after all of the summer fun or after any break for that matter, but it’s necessary if you’re going to bring in this year’s harvest.  If you’re finding it hard to make that shift, here are 5 key points for you to use to get back into the swing of things and focus on your fall harvest:

  • Get organized!  Organize your office space in a way that allows you to find anything in no time flat.  So many people waste time just looking for things and believe me that time adds up.  When you lose time, you lose money.  Get rid of things that you no longer need, archive files that you need to keep and mark them with a date that they can be destroyed.  Once you get your office organized, maintain it.
  • Develop systems that support you.  Any business will have the usual systems—accounting, sales, filing, etc, but many forget that they need a time management system, which is one of the biggest mistakes I see solopreneurs making.  Because of that gap, time flies by but nothing’s gets done.  Find the tool that fits for you and create a system around that tool.
  • Get back on track with your goals.  It’s really easy to get off track even without summer vacation in play.  Take a look at what you created, review your plan and the tasks that will get you to the end result and see what changes need to be made.  If there’s something that hasn’t gotten done because of your summer excursion, recreate it and get it moving.
  • Eliminate the time wasters.  If you haven’t yet learned how to delegate, now is the perfect time.  If you have someone that you can pass things to, then start handing them off so that you can focus on the more important, income generating things.  If you don’t have a Virtual Assistant, get one.  If that’s not in the budget, then find an intern who needs the college credits and hours.  Don’t forget the #1 time waster—email.  Control what hits your inbox and how you handle your email.  First, set designated times to check your email and don’t make one of those times first thing in the morning.  Check email for the first time 1.5-2 hours into your day.  Use email filters and folders to direct email to designated folders labeled for particular people, projects and newsletters then check those folders as needed.

Those are four things that will get you back on track and help you make that shift to get back to business. The fifth key is to implement them all. Just don’t take in this information, make your notes, say you’re going to follow the steps and then do nothing.  Be in action. Take the steps that will help you make that shift that you’re looking for. If you do they will help keep you on track.


Productivity Chat

Highlights From March 3rd #Productivitychat

Storified by Sheila Hawkins· Mon, Mar 04 2013 09:55:14

Question I posed earlier this week: How much time did you waste in email, looking for things, etc? #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
Now, we know you most likely wasted time this past week, but probably don’t know how much. Create an estimate #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
Once you have the amount of time you wasted, multiply it by your hourly rate (what you charge your clients) #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
That dollar amount is what the time you wasted cost you. Might be painful, but it’s true. Time to get it together #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
Fact: The average professional spends about 12.5-15 hours on email each week #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
There is no need to waste time in email–there ARE ways to manage it and control your overflowing inbox… #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
Get control of your inbox.Use filters, folders and rules to sort email; unsubscribe from lists that don’t serve you… #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
Stop checking your email as soon as you start your day. Instead focus on a priority task and check email 1.5-2 hours in #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
Set designated times to check and reply to email (twice/day is good). Stay focused by closing email when you’re not in it #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
Fact: Most professionals spend 1.5-2 hours each day looking for things—in their office, on their computer. Time to GO #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
It’s not necessary to waste time looking for things—time to organize your office space. Find things in < 30 seconds #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
Take the dollar amount you came up with and multiply it by 5 (number of work days in the week) Can you say, "ouch"? #productivitychatSheila Hawkins
Get organized, learn how to manage yourself, stop wasting time and increase productivity and your bottom line! #productivitychatSheila Hawkins

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