How To Put An End To Wasting Time

We think many of our listeners can relate to this scenario — you’ve got lots of things to do and want to get them done but after a few hours of activity, you just don’t feel any productivity. Rather than energised by a sense of achievement, you’re floundering in a swamp of frustration.

Sometimes it doesn’t matter how intelligent, driven or committed to the cause you are, there are days (or weeks) where you feel like you’re getting nowhere.

In this podcast, Paul and Chris take on resolving this challenge as posed to us by one of our listeners.

Time management is an ongoing quest for many people and yet it’s always the wrong quest. You can’t manage time, you can only manage yourself.

And specifically, you can manage your state, your focus, your energy and your clarity.

Paul and Chris provide great tips and practical actions to break out of any frustration and turn confusion into victory.

Let us know what you will do differently after listening to this podcast. Leave us a comment below or on our Facebook page.

Why Your Problem Isn’t Going Away

Do you have a problem or challenge that seems to continually behave like an uninvited guest in your life?

Those extra 10lbs around your waist line?

That annoying boss that is always micro-managing your every move?

That credit card debt that is quietly growing, not shrinking?

We all have “problems” that can be a constant thorn in our side and cause of frustration, disappointment or even depression.

But if it’s sticking around in your life longer than you want or need it to, you’ve got to ask WHY?

WHY does it continue to persist?

WHY have you allowed it to persist?

Despite all the resasons you might give, and what you say when you vent to your partner or best friend, they may not be the “right” reasons.

Changing something can be hard and when we face change we fight against our natural tendencies for maintaining our internal status quo.

We are hardwired for self-preservation. Some say that’s evolutionary, some say it’s passed down from generations. Either way, what research shows is that we are designed to conserve as much as possible…calories, physical energy, mental energy, emotional energy, etc.

In other words, we like the path of least resistance and this directly affects the decisions we make and the action we take.

And because we like the path of least resistance we generally respond to change in one of four ways:

a. Procrastinate – we intellectually know – and emotionally, are acutely aware – that something is off in our lives but we decide we can delay taking action until some later time (and be no worse off). It may not feel like a decision, but our behaviour shows that we have decided to not take the action necessary to resolve it.

b. Rationalize – we acknowledge the conflict but downplay it in our mind. We justify the problem for the time being even if it still stings but are convincing enough to allow it to persist. “It’s only 5lbs but I’m not as heavy as I was in 2008 and I don’t have any big social obligations coming up so I’ll just wear my bagging clothes until I need to change…”

c. Suppress – we try to completely ignore it or push it out of our minds. We turn our attention to more pressing matters, or convenient distractions that we can find in the moment. Chocolate or the office sweets jar are a common reprieve from the discomfort.

d. Accept – we acknowledge it yet tell ourselves that this is the way things are and there’s no point trying to change it. We adopt learned helplessness and play victim to the situation rendering us incapable of making it better. It may feel like that is true but this approach can erode our self-esteem, self-worth and resourcefulness to find a way…because there’s always a way if we want it badly enough.

When we engage in any of these behaviours we are effectively resolving our conflict in the moment but the reality is we’re not solving anything. It feels like we are because the tension goes away but we’re only delaying the eventual solution.

And when your action is only aimed at resolving your inner conflict (e.g. your feelings of stress, worrying, frustration, disappointment, etc) in the moment but don’t actually move closer to eliminating the real issue, you are directly and undeniably encouraging your problem to stick around.

So when you ask WHY the challenge continues to be present in your life, start measuring yourself against these four common responses.

  • Are you exhibiting one or more of these behaviours more than you should?
  • Are you doing it consciously and actively avoiding having to face the issue head on?
  • Or were you doing it unconsciously but now you can see how you are contributing to the lingering nature of the problem?

It’s time to take back control of yourself and be more mindful of how you respond to problems.

Just as you trained yourself to take the path of least resistance, you can train yourself to take the path of most effectiveness. You can make your default reaction more conscious, more honest, more courageous, more resourceful and cut off the chance of it sticking around longer than it needs to.

Which in turn, means you will have more energy and optimism for the things that really matter to you and to work on becoming the person you want to be.

If this post resonated with you, tell us why? How do you tend to respond and what do you think you could do differently in the future. Leave us a comment below or post on our facebook page.

 

Can You Overdo It – is it possible to take too much action?

Can you Overdo It with too much action?

At ActionPodcast we believe that small things, consistently done produce extraordinary results – so is it possible to overdo it? Those small steps can start to build strong momentum, so is there such a thing as taking too much action?

There are two aspects to consider when you are taking massive action towards a project or outcome that you want – one is focus, and the other is natural rhythm.

If your focus remains fixed on only one action, and all your energy and effort are directed towards that point, then you could be losing sight of how this action fits within the bigger picture of what you want to achieve.

Likewise, if you ignore the human need for the natural ebb and flow of energy – the need to expel energy and then recharge, you could find yourself feeling burnt out or frustrated and guilty because you can’t maintain that pace indefinitely.

How Not To Overdo It

Taking time out to recharge is an essential part of any action plan, and it can be helpful to think of the cycle of the Seasons as a metaphor for this. The type and level of energy we need to invest varies through Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter, and this cycle is something that can play out repeatedly during a larger or more longer-term goals that we’re working towards.

Allowing ourselves this ‘downtime’ not only recharges our batteries (making us more effective when we move back into action), but it also gives us the chance to step back and examine our area of focus, and to shift it if needs be. If we are lacking sufficient times to recharge or the perspective to check whether our action is moving us in the best direction, then we increase the chances that we might appear to overdo it.

Join Chris & Sam in this podcast as they explore effective ways to put boundaries around your recharge time, and ensure that you are focusing your action in the best way.

Thanks to Mark @StarbirdTV for his brilliant inspiration!

Time Management Tips – Where does all the time go?

Over the years I’ve taken many courses and tried many approaches to ‘time management’. (Of course, that’s a misnomer of a topic title since you don’t manage time whatsoever. You manage yourself as time passes.)

Planning my day. Planning my week. Scheduling tasks and appointments – even for time just to think and work in silence. Recording actual vs. planned. Monitoring interruptions. Re-planning by Wednesday since the original plan from Monday has all gone up in flames.

I’m not sure I can accurately describe why I have a mild obsession about improving in this area, but I admit I do.

And one thing that is clear to me is trying to solve the wrong problem won’t give you the right answer.

The first step to improving your time management is to accurately diagnosis where the problem lies. Here are a few tips on where to look and where to begin.Continue reading

Sleep Problems – Reasons and Solutions for Insomina

Sleep problemsSleep is vital to our well-being, but (a bit like our health) we tend to take it for granted when all is well, and only start to appreciate it more when problems arise.

Suffering from Insomnia?

Whether you’ve been troubled by occasional or chronic insomnia, had vivid dreams that you wake from feeling exhausted, tossed and turned all night or had an injury/illness that affected the quality of your sleep, sleep problems can affect everything from your appetite, ability to concentrate, your mood (irritability!) to your energy levels, happiness and effectiveness.

Causes of Sleep Problems

Sometimes there are obvious reasons for why we don’t sleep well:

  • We might be stressed about a particular issue, person or scenario
  • We may have had a late meal or cup of coffee
  • We could have been too hot, too cold or too ill

But a lot of the time the reasons for poor sleep are less obvious, and this is when changes to our sleep quality can signal that we need to pay attention to something. A bad night’s sleep can have a purposeful message for us!Continue reading

30 Days To Eliminate Stress and Frustration

Often the biggest, most enduring stress and frustration in our lives comes from things we continue to tolerate, but not do something about. In this podcast, Sam and Chris talk about making progress by getting clear and taking action on what you don’t want in your life any longer.

Not just providing a ‘positive thinking’ theory, they guide you through a specific set of actions and provide a simple framework for you to take on a transformational 30 day challenge to eliminate a key stress or frustration from your life.

Listen to the podcast and leave a comment to let us know you’re taking the challenge and how we can help you to succeed.

The Big Impact of Little Baby Steps

It occurred to me recently, that I have spent more than half my life learning about human potential, studying success and gaining insight from the world’s greatest teachers, all to feed my own curiousity about what really matters and what it really takes to create a deeply fulfilling life. A life of your choosing (for the most part), a life on your terms (for the most part), a life filled with more laughter, happiness, health and success.

I’ve learned that we – the average, everyday person – are capable of changing our lives in numerous ways, dramatic ways (!) and faster than most might believe. Many people are wanting or hoping to improve their situation in some way: to lose weight, save more money, develop more meaningful relationships, take on more interesting or engaging hobbies, travel more, give back more, and the list goes on. Many just want to feel alive again.Continue reading

Time to spring clean your mind

Spring is a time of new beginnings and growth. It’s also time to get rid of old things that are no longer needed and welcome fresh new additions. Usually, that applies to cleaning up your home – that avoidable cupboard, spare room or putting away the winter gear. But what about spring cleaning your life and your mind?

Our minds are much like our homes.  They both get cluttered. They fill up with bits and bobs we no longer want or need. Both benefit from a regular cleaning out of stuff that we collected for one reason, and are holding onto out of habit, neglect, or just delusion it’s still the right thing to do.Continue reading

Delays are not denials

Do you know that moment when you find out something you’ve been really looking forward to has been cancelled? You’ve been so looking forward to it, building up anticipation, wrapping up your planning and telling your friends all about it? Perhaps a flight for a holiday, a party, a date with someone special, or a new business meeting?

The let down can be very painful and frustrating, sometimes even “devastating”. Or so it seems in the moment. Continue reading

Not Feeling Listened To?

How does it feel when you are speaking to someone and it seems like your words are passing through the air between you, going in one of their ears, and out their other ear almost simultaneously? There is nothing much more frustrating than that!

“I’m not being listened to! They aren’t hearing me! Why am I so misunderstood?”

Having to constantly repeat ourselves is not the only option! Join Chris and Sam as they explore the differences between hearing and listening, how it affects our communication when we feel like we aren’t being listened to, and what we can start doing to improve the effectiveness of our speaking and listening straight away.