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What kind of List Maker are You?

Since starting this blog and writing my book Listful Thinking — one of my favorite parts is meeting lots of people who love making lists. Even at my day job, working as a news producer, I encounter tons of fellow list makers who can’t wait to swap list tips!

Over time I’ve started to notice that list makers tend to fall into certain categories, all with their own styles of list making.

Check out the categories below to figure out what kind of a list maker you are:

Monkey List Maker

You might be this list maker if:

  1. You have a list for – literally – everything.
  2. All your lists have a place, like a notebook or in Evernote.
  3. You keep them in a certain order or they are color coded.

These list makers are just like me and for them lists are serious business! Monkey list makers are normally very organized, but they can fall into the trap of spending more time writing lists than crossing items off! To stop yourself from doing this make sure that every task has a deadline – even if it’s not urgent create a ‘fake’ deadline.

Monkeys are known for being very smart and efficient.  Though if you’re a monkey and you don’t set a deadline – you may never get around to doing that task. Read more

The Art of the 7 Minute Meeting

Me and Terri Trespicio with Gary Vaynerchuk at our friend Farnoosh Torabi's launch party for her new CNBC show Follow the Leader. She interviews Gary in it.

Me and Terri Trespicio with Gary Vaynerchuk at our friend Farnoosh Torabi’s launch party for her new CNBC show Follow the Leader. She interviews Gary in it.

I talk a lot about the biggest time wasters in the workplace.

You know them well.

There’s checking Facebook or your email, trolling the internet for nearly anything, chatting with your co-worker, a “quick” game of Candy Crush… the list goes on and on.

But what’s the ultimate time waster?

Meetings!

Think about it.  How many time have you sat in a meeting that was supposed to finish an hour ago, but one person keeps asking questions that aren’t really relevant? (There’s always one!)

What’s more?  The majority of meetings end up going nowhere. Too much talk and nothing ever gets done.

That’s a huge pet peeve of mine — I’m all about the execution.  Give me the checklist to get things done! Read more

Ready, Set, Time Yourself

rp_waiting-410328_640-300x200.jpgFrom CEOs to janitors, we all have the same problem: We think we don’t have enough time.

For many of us getting the most out of our time is crucial. Everyone knows what tasks they need to do in a day, but do you know how long each of those tasks will take? Down to the second?

After working in television and digital producing video segments for nearly 15 years I’ve learned timing is everything. You need to know exactly how long each segment takes and every last second counts. If a story runs long 15 seconds then another story needs to be cut by the same amount of time.  Read more

Get a Stopwatch — You Need It!

clock-782536_640The most common excuse for not being more productive is saying that you have too much going on.

I’m too busy.” — you often say.  

Am I right?

I’m going to let you in on a little secret — no you aren’t!  

The thing with productivity is that it’s not how much you do, but how you do it. Do you get the most out of the time you have?  Or are you so busy because you fill your day with stuff you don’t really need to be doing.  That’s precious time you could be wasting!

The easiest way to find out is to track your time.

When I started making a note of how I spent my day I had a few surprises. For example, that thing I thought took only five minutes, actually took way longer than that.  It’s never just five minutes in the end.

There are a few apps and techniques to help you track your time. You can find them in the Entrepreneur.com article I wrote on time management.

Also if you want to know more about tracking your time, my friend and fellow author Laura Vanderkam is giving away her time tracking guide for free! Laura’s written several books including What The Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast and I Know How She Does It: How Successful Women Make the Most of Their Time.  If anyone knows how to manage time it’s her!

Why Being Nosy Makes You Unproductive

cultura-organizationala-doru-dimaI’m a naturally curious person. You might call it nosy, but I don’t see it that way.

I’m just interested in what’s going on around me. It’s why I love people watching so much and it’s also probably the reason why I went into journalism.

The problem is sometimes this curiosity can be a hinderance. When you want to be in the know about everything… well it’s a lot of research. Sometimes I get so wrapped in things I don’t even care about, because I’m interested to see if it might lead somewhere good.

So I’m taking a stand and trying to cut these nosy time wasters out of my life.  Check out my list – maybe you are guilty of dilly dallying with these tasks too: Read more