Simple Productivity Blog

Keep Your House Clean Without Marathon Sessions

Simple Productivity Blog

My mother was a stay-at-home mom. Her cleaning system wasn't going to work for me as a working mom. But the one system that seemed to work stopped working when we moved into a bigger space. Here's how I stopped doing marathon cleaning sessions and got it under control.

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And The Holiday Season Is Upon Us

Simple Productivity Blog

I'm going about my normal life and WHAM! the holidays are right there. And that means I'm going to miss some sort of deadline. I have a fix. The post And The Holiday Season Is Upon Us appeared first on Laura Earnest. Organization Planning

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Podcast Episode 35: Enough, Tinkering and Routines

Simple Productivity Blog

In today's episodes, we look at: What is enough? Tinkering. Innovation vs. Standardization (routines). The post Podcast Episode 35: Enough, Tinkering and Routines appeared first on Laura Earnest. Podcast Productivity

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How To Manage Working From Home

Simple Productivity Blog

Working from home.many of us are doing it right now. Some are doing it better than others. So how can you make working from home successful?

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Why My Team Is Thriving At Work

Simple Productivity Blog

This has been a hell of a year. COVID has put a stress on most working people, if it left them employed at all. I've been working at home since March, and there is no sign of returning to the office. Yet our team is thriving. Someone recently asked me why I thought that was the case.

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Podcast Episode 34: How I Get It All Done

Simple Productivity Blog

In the recent reader survey, several people asked me how I managed to get everything done and have so much energy. Today's episode divulges my secret. The post Podcast Episode 34: How I Get It All Done appeared first on Laura Earnest. Podcast

2020 130

Applying Pareto to Pareto, or Math Doesn’t Work That Way

Simple Productivity Blog

The Pareto Principle has been much abused in productivity circles. But I recently saw something that blew me away. Someone suggested that if 80% of the results comes from 20% of the work, then it must also hold that 64% of the results comes from 4% of the work. Umm, no.

2020 130

30 Day Challenge Wrapup: Self-Care Challenge

Simple Productivity Blog

Self-care: so simple, yet so powerful. I'm not talking pampering here. But the basics. And the challenge I just spent had some unexpected benefits. The post 30 Day Challenge Wrapup: Self-Care Challenge appeared first on Laura Earnest. 30 Day Challenge

2020 130

Book Review: Eat That Frog!

Simple Productivity Blog

Eating frogs? Well, if you eat a frog first thing in the morning, nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day. And that applies to productivity as well. Brian Tracy's book, Eat That Frog!

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Podcast Episode 33: Antelopes, Rocks and Balance

Simple Productivity Blog

This episode debuts the segment format: Segment 1: Antelopes, Mice and Energy ROI. Segment 2: The Pickle Jar Theory Of Time Management. Segment 3: Tying it All Together. The post Podcast Episode 33: Antelopes, Rocks and Balance appeared first on Laura Earnest. Podcast

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Are You Over-Systemized?

Simple Productivity Blog

I've believed for a while it is possible to be over-systemized.

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Getting A Kindle Book List From Amazon

Simple Productivity Blog

I've been buying Amazon books since 2009. That's a whole lot of books. And while writing a recent article on backlogs, I realized that I have built up a huge backlog of unread books on my Kindle. How many, exactly? Well, there's no easy way to tell.

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Podcast Episode 32: A Thousand Cuts

Simple Productivity Blog

I was having to decide, time after time, what I was going to do every single time I looked at my tasks. It was draining my productivity as surely as a thousand tiny cuts would drain my blood. So I needed to revamp my task system.

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Checking Out the Expert

Simple Productivity Blog

There are experts everywhere. Some are self-proclaimed, some lauded by others. But before we give credence to their words, we really owe it to ourselves to begin by checking out the expert's credentials. How much can you trust your "expert"? How much can a person teach you?

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30 Day Challenge: Do More Self-Care

Simple Productivity Blog

I don't take very good care of myself. I short myself on sleep almost daily. I don't eat well or regularly. I don't hydrate enough. I don't exercise regularly. I sit for my job and I sit for my hobbies. I don't allow myself the time to meditate or process my emotions through journaling.

2020 130

30 Day Challenge Wrapup: Sitting With Myself

Simple Productivity Blog

I couldn't believe how much shifted for me when I sat for fifteen minutes a day with my own thoughts. The post 30 Day Challenge Wrapup: Sitting With Myself appeared first on Laura Earnest. 30 Day Challenge

2020 130

Get Started Faster

Simple Productivity Blog

How many times have you started something just to be stopped by having to fetch needed material or run to the store or do another task first? Wouldn't it be nice just to have everything ready to go? It would certainly help us get started faster.

2020 130

Little and Often: A Key To Consistent Progress

Simple Productivity Blog

One of the things that I still struggle with, years into the productivity space, is making my to-do list doable.

2020 130

Podcast Episode 31: Little and Often vs Deep Work

Simple Productivity Blog

Two approaches to getting things done, Little and Often (Forster) and Deep Work (Newport) are often pitted as exclusive options. I think there is a place for both. The post Podcast Episode 31: Little and Often vs Deep Work appeared first on Laura Earnest. Podcast

2020 130

Productify Your Phone

Simple Productivity Blog

A friend of mine called from the road and asked me for the phone number for my mechanic. She had a breakdown, and even though I had given her the number when she told me about her concerns weeks before, she had lost it and never made the appointment.

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2020 Annual Reader Survey

Simple Productivity Blog

Every year I take some time to ask my readers and followers what they would like to see over the next year. This year I've included questions about how COVID is affecting you.

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The Right Tools For the Job

Simple Productivity Blog

I am aware that you can re-purpose things to serve functions the designer never intended. For example, in college I never owned a tool set. If I had to hang up a picture, I would use a high-heeled shoe to do the pounding.

2020 130

Podcast Episode 30: Your Inner Lazy

Simple Productivity Blog

Laziness is the key to productivity. Here are six questions you should be asking to channel your inner lazy. The post Podcast Episode 30: Your Inner Lazy appeared first on Laura Earnest. Podcast

2020 130

30 Day Challenge: Sitting With Myself

Simple Productivity Blog

Could you sit with yourself, no electronics or other distractions, for 15 minutes a day? It's probably harder than you think. This month's challenge is to teach me to be comfortable with myself and my wandering thoughts. The post 30 Day Challenge: Sitting With Myself appeared first on Laura Earnest.

2020 130

30 Day Challenge Wrapup: Learn A Language

Simple Productivity Blog

In August I challenged myself to learn a language. Here is what I gained from the challenge. The post 30 Day Challenge Wrapup: Learn A Language appeared first on Laura Earnest. 30 Day Challenge

2020 130

The Value in Unplugging

Simple Productivity Blog

Is there any value in unplugging? I have a confession to make: I design software and databases by writing on a window with a dry-erase marker. I also do my podcast outlines and about a quarter of my blogging on paper.

2020 130

Podcast Episode 29: Clearing the 5 Types of Space

Simple Productivity Blog

This show discusses the space in your life, along with. What the 5 types of space are. Why you should consider clearing them. How to clear them effectively. The post Podcast Episode 29: Clearing the 5 Types of Space appeared first on Laura Earnest. Podcast

2020 130

Goals…As Waves?

Simple Productivity Blog

I'm a musician and engineer. I was educated on waves. I'm also a productivity nerd with a healthy interest in goals. So when I came across this article in my archives, I decided it needed some more exposure. It presents goals as waves. The post Goals…As Waves? appeared first on Laura Earnest.

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Organize Your Workspace with 7 Strategies

Simple Productivity Blog

If you had to show a photo of your workspace right now, would you be comfortable? You, like most people, probably need to have a session to organize your workspace before you could show it off. We recently had a "show your workspace" thread come up for my company.

2020 130

Podcast Episode 28: Saying No

Simple Productivity Blog

Saying no is a crucial skill to learn if you are going to be in charge of your life. Today we will look at when and why to say no, how it's not always a black and white answer, and various ways to say no. The post Podcast Episode 28: Saying No appeared first on Laura Earnest. Podcast

2020 130

The Balanced Life Myth

Simple Productivity Blog

Too many people talk about living a balanced life, as if life can be slotted into the chunks of a pie graph. The truth is, we don't balance, not as people typically think. In fact, it's not about doing more, but rather being deliberate about what you do, and letting the rest go.

2020 130

30 Day Challenge: Learn A Language

Simple Productivity Blog

I was never required to take any language other than English during any of my schooling. My home school district didn't consider it essential, and it never fit into my university requirements. (I I am, however, fluent in seven programming languages and can write in four others.

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30 Day Challenge Wrapup: Brain Training

Simple Productivity Blog

I decided that I would challenge myself to some brain training this month. I used some games I had for a Nintendo DS, and worked from there. My goal was to do some training that had measurable results What I Found I enjoyed using the software, but found that I had good days and bad days.

2020 130

Editing Life: Relationships

Simple Productivity Blog

Not all relationships are created equal. Some are great, supportive relationships, while others will suck the life right out of you. After a round of social isolation, you are probably aware of the benefits and drawbacks of your various relationships.

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Podcast Episode 27: Sharpen the Saw and Fill The Well

Simple Productivity Blog

Why have we been exhausted through the shutdowns? I think it's because we've all been running on fumes. Today we talk about sharpening the saw and filling the well - activities to get us back to productivity without exhaustion.

2020 130

Editing Life: Projects

Simple Productivity Blog

When I was young, I believed I could do everything. People told me I could do "anything" and I assumed that meant "everything". Unfortunately, this has given me a "put more on my plate than I can eat" with respect to the things I want to do. The truth is, I am not Wonder Woman. I am human.

2020 130

Getting The Most Out of Batching

Simple Productivity Blog

The two-minute rule says that if you can deal with it in under 2 minutes, do it right then. In some cases, I think this is a good rule. But in others, I think batching is a better way to go. Batching is grouping like tasks together and getting them done. They don't all have to be the same task - you can batch by location or equipment. For instance, you could update your calendar, pay for your pet licenses, and process your email in a batch, because you can do all these things on your computer.

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5 Tips for Moving Back to the Office

Simple Productivity Blog

As we start to reemerge after the quarantine, many of us are headed back to the office. But after working remote for so many weeks, it's hard to think about going back to the way we were. Today I offer some tips to keep your productivity up as you move back to the office. The post 5 Tips for Moving Back to the Office appeared first on Laura Earnest. Productivity

2020 109

Editing Life: Expenses

Simple Productivity Blog

When the pandemic hit with the stay-at-home orders, many people were knocked out of work. The world economy is now officially in recession, and most households are facing lean times. I'm one of the lucky ones in that I can work from home, and my client committed to keeping us consultants employed. But there is still the uncertainty of the future, both for my family, and many others. One of the outcomes of this recession was that many people cut back on unnecessary spending.

Podcast Episode 26: Interview at Lifelong Learning

Simple Productivity Blog

Joshua Galinato of Galiway.Blog and Lifelong Learning podcast interviewed me about productivity, burnout and deliberate living. He has been gracious in allowing me to share the interview with my audience. The post Podcast Episode 26: Interview at Lifelong Learning appeared first on Laura Earnest. Podcast

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Editing Life: Hobbies

Simple Productivity Blog

I love my hobbies. Creativity is second nature to me, and I would spend my days making music, braiding, knitting, scrapbooking, doing calligraphy, spinning and writing if I could. Unfortunately, I can't. I have financial and family obligations that preclude my full-time participation in hobbies. In this time of the global pandemic I have found that I have more time to engage my hobbies.

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30 Day Challenge: Brain Training

Simple Productivity Blog

I feel like I've been getting mentally sloppy. For this month's challenge, I decided I would do brain training every day. Why Brain Training? I feel like I've been getting mentally sloppy. I don't read things that challenge me much; my work exercises my skills in problem solving, but the rest of my skills don't get a regular workout. I want to use science to help me maintain (and hopefully regain) some of my mental agility.

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30 Day Challenge Wrapup: Make A List of 30 Day Challenges

Simple Productivity Blog

I was having difficulty coming up with 30 day challenges that actually interested me. I knew that if I wasn't interested, there was no way in heck I was going to do them. So I decided to challenge myself to make my own list of 30 day challenges. This was actually fairly easy to do. I sat down for three sessions, and wrote out things I wanted to try or add to my life. Here is my list: The post 30 Day Challenge Wrapup: Make A List of 30 Day Challenges appeared first on Laura Earnest.

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