Productivity

Highway

Imagine your life as various points on the highway.  Fast Lane, Slow Lane, Shoulder, Ditch.

And at any given time, in any given area, you can be in one of those four.

Living in the Fast Lane means you’re getting where you’re going. You’re fulfilling your purpose.

In the Slow Lane you have a lot of movement, but you never quite seem to get there, wherever “there” is.

On the Shoulder, your “engine” is running, but you’re not moving ahead at all.

In the Ditch means you’ve crashed or are stuck, and without help you aren’t going anywhere.

Having punched my card in all four locations, I can tell you we’re all a mixed bag. You can be idling on the shoulder in one area, cruising in another, and crashed out in a third. So let’s break it down a little more. [click to continue…]

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Above the Fog

There’s a productivity that gets things done.

There’s another productivity that makes things one… that nourishes the soul and flourishes into gratitude…

Expectancy…

Joy.

This is Productivity of the Soul.

Both are important.  [click to continue…]

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Productivity

There are two kinds of productivity – productivity in the urgent and productivity in the important.

Productivity in the urgent involves deadlines…

checklists…

stress relief…

making a living. [click to continue…]

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pha112000020I’m a big believer in cross training – especially since no less than Solomon said that “a wise man will hear and increase in learning.”  Under the banner of “all truth is God’s truth,” I make my living helping people find truth and wisdom in places where they may not otherwise look. That starts with scripture, of course. But even scripture sometimes points us to learning from other sources.  Check this out:

Go to the ant, O sluggard, Observe her ways and be wise… (Proverbs 6:6).

So in the spirit of being teachable, I have previously suggested that there are things you can learn from an orange salesman,  a party crasher, a baseball franchise, a ghost house, and a fired CEO.

Today’s teacher is a little less dramatic and a lot more in line with Solomon’s insect example.  [click to continue…]

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Man  and his dog reading newspaperIt was one of the early flashes of her wicked-strong sense of humor.  I was taking the twins to school during their sixth grade year.  We passed by the big-chain hotel on South Loop 289 when all of a sudden I heard Carrie bust out laughing from the back.

What was so funny?

The welcome sign at the hotel read, “Welcome Pest Control.”  Obviously it was some kind of meeting of some organization in that industry.  But I’m not sure that’s what you want to trumpet to the rest of the potential guests.

“I’ve heard of roach motels before,” she said, “but they must be desperate.”

+++++++

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago.  [click to continue…]

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So many random thoughts or snippets of wisdom (or something)… so little time.  Here are seven more ideas that are still in my “oven”.  And if you’re a sucker for these kinds of things, and just can’t get enough from Facebook or Twitter, check this out.  Or maybe this or this.

Not long ago I read about this great procrastination test on the Psychology Today website.  The test helps you target patterns of procrastination, then do something to change them.  I clicked on the link and left it on my browser for a couple of days until I could get to it.  Yes… I procrastinated taking the procrastination test.  Until the browser locked up and I had to restart it… and lost the test.  Ugh.  The good news is, I found it again (thanks, Google).  The bad news is, I’m still procrastinating.  If you’d like to load it up and procrastinate taking it with me, you can find it here. [click to continue…]

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PlannerIn a previous post I mentioned how I experienced a mini-revolution when somebody suggested that the simplest and most powerful form of goal-setting is simply making a list of things I want to BE, DO, and HAVE.  I went to town!  And wasn’t content just to itemize some things.  I wanted to learn from them.  I wanted to learn how to redesign my life before God so that when opportunities arose, like Joshua, I could take quick action.

For me, that meant creating a tool that would help channel my thinking and my actions in the right direction.  I began thinking of it as my own personalized planner.  I learned from Steven Covey about intentionally planning for the important, though not necessarily urgent, things.  I learned from Anthony Robbins about thinking about the states of mind/heart I wanted to experience each day.  I learned from the life of Joseph that if I cultivated faithfulness in the daily spaces and dark places, that one day the prison doors would open and Pharaoh would come calling.

So, beginning with the end of the day in mind, I asked myself,

“Self, at the end of the perfect day for me, what can I say that I have done”?

Here is what “God put in my heart to do” (Nehemiah 2:18).  Your answer to the question, of course, would be your own.  [click to continue…]

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GE adIt’s a long way from Fairfield, Connecticut, the home of General Electric, to Henderson, Nevada, the home of Zappos.  The gap is even wider between their respective products and services.

GE is a multinational American technology and services conglomerate.  Zappos sells shoes, handbags, and other items online – to the tune of more than $1 billion this year.

Both made the news last week.  And it all has to do with their “Bottom 10.”

General Electric is a household name; chances are, you have something in your home with it’s name emboldened on it.  The only original company still listed on the Dow Jones Industrial Average, more recently, GE is the company that Jack rebuilt, and one of the most admired in the business world today.  Jack Welch determined in the 1980s that GE would be number 1 or 2 in  particular industry or leave it completely.  He also started the practice of firing the bottom-performing 10% of his managers every year.

Last week the Wall Street Journal reported that GE was sending its century-old appliances business to the auction block.  Say it ain’t so!  The American company that “brings good things to life” may be bringin’ ‘em from Korea or Sweden or somewhere else.  From a sentimental perspective, it hurts.  But from a management perspective, it was an overdue decision.

[click to continue…]

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