Simple Productivity Blog

Tips for Personal Holiday Greetings

Simple Productivity Blog

It used to be that people sent cards at the holidays as a matter of social norm. Now with social media, most people don't send holiday greetings. After all, it is much easier to click a few times or to post once and let others see it when they may.

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Podcast Episode 12: Two Things That Will Make Your Day Go Smoother

Simple Productivity Blog

How you start your day impacts how the rest of your day will go. Start the morning frantic, and you will be playing catch up the rest of the day. But you can stack the deck in your favor by doing the two things that will make your whole day go smoother.

2019 130

Deliberate December

Simple Productivity Blog

The holiday season is upon us. For most people, it hits like a blizzard tornado, and they find themselves spit out in January dazed, exhausted and bruised. And I understand, because I was like that for many years.

2019 130

30 Day Challenge: All of the Above

Simple Productivity Blog

It’s the last month of the year, and I was at a loss to choose a single habit. Many of the habits I have tried through my 30 day challenges over the past year needs some reinforcement, so I thought it would be good to spend a month making those habits stronger.

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30 Day Challenge Wrap Up: Exercise Every Day

Simple Productivity Blog

My 30 day challenge of exercising every day is over. See what I learned! The post 30 Day Challenge Wrap Up: Exercise Every Day appeared first on Laura Earnest. 30 Day Challenge

2019 130

Boost Productivity by Simplifying Spaces

Simple Productivity Blog

Many years ago I saw the effect of simplifying spaces in my home. By taking away the immediate choices my daughter had for activities, she was able to settle quicker and play longer.

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Using the Right Tools

Simple Productivity Blog

I've talked about how you can take a tool that is not quite right and make it work for you. This is good if you cannot use a tool optimally, or don't really know how to use it fully. There are times, though, when you do know how to use a tool, but are forced to use a sub-optimal or substitute tool.

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30 Day Challenge: Planning The Night Before Wrap-up

Simple Productivity Blog

I realized I was having difficulty sticking to my task list.because I had never made a plan. The Planning The Night Before challenge was to get me past that difficulty. The challenge was to make my plan for the next day in my bullet journal the night before.

2019 130

Learn Your Shortcuts

Simple Productivity Blog

I was working with a colleague recently, helping him through a process that was unfamiliar with a tool he had not really used. What we were doing is less important than the conversation. Paste the item three times." I'll admit it, I was bored.

2019 130

Building a Morning Routine That Matters

Simple Productivity Blog

One of the things that I struggle with as I put together routines to support my life is meaning. It's one thing to take another person's routine and adopt it, but for me, this quickly turns sour if it doesn't matter to my life. I'm looking at this more closely as I rebuild routines.

2019 130

Why I Am Grateful To My Worst Boss

Simple Productivity Blog

It has now been four years since my very short excursion into the world of education. The wounds have skinned over enough for me to talk about it, and so I wanted to take today to talk about why I am grateful for the worst boss I ever had. I'm going to call it a mid-life crisis.

2019 130

Making A Tool Work for You

Simple Productivity Blog

Not all tools can be used optimally by all people. This applies whether it is a physical tool like a hammer or a productivity system. Today we will look at an approach to allow you to get as much out of a tool as you can. I've always maintained that there is no magic bullet in productivity.

2019 130

Podcast Episode 10: The Every Day List

Simple Productivity Blog

Life can get caught up in the day to day task list items. So much so that we forget about everything except crossing off the next item. In today's show I will talk about an every day list. We'll look at what they are, how to make one, and how to make sure you do them.

2019 130

30 Day Challenge: Planning The Night Before

Simple Productivity Blog

I had thought to tackle something major this month, but honestly, I need something that is going to help me stay on track rather than something that is going to shake the foundations. And for that reason, I have decided that this month's 30 day challenge is going to be to plan the night before.

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30 Day Challenge Wrap Up: Spending Freeze

Simple Productivity Blog

For my 30 Day Challenge this month, I did a spending freeze. As I talked about when I started it, I wanted to reduce the stuff I was bringing in to the house, and see if could manage to break my spending habit. It wasn't easy, but I got some great results. Read on for more details.

2019 130

What is Multi-tasking, Exactly?

Simple Productivity Blog

Back about 10 years ago, multi-tasking was touted as the way to get more done. Doing two things at once is better than one, after all, right? Not so fast.(literally literally and figuratively!). When I first heard about multi-tasking, I really thought it was a good idea.

2019 130

Episode 9: How To Pick Your Next Project

Simple Productivity Blog

You have a list of projects. How do you know which one to focus on? It all comes down to return on investment, at least in terms of time and energy. Today I will give you a way to rank your projects to make it a bit easier to figure out which one to tackle next.

2019 130

12 Productivity Lessons from The Princess Bride

Simple Productivity Blog

Productivity advice can be found pretty much wherever you look. I was watching the Princess Bride a few days ago and realized how much of the movie can be applied to make my life more productive. I work on a team of men that constantly quotes movies.

2019 130

2019 Annual Reader Survey

Simple Productivity Blog

Once a year I take a survey of my readers. I use this information to direct content over the next year. Please help me to help you by filling out the survey. The post 2019 Annual Reader Survey appeared first on Laura Earnest. Announcements

2019 130

What To Do When Things Start Feeling Off Kilter?

Simple Productivity Blog

Over the summer, making deliberate choices about my life and activities have fallen by the side of the road. Not deliberately (no pun intended). It just has happened due to a lack of intention.

2019 130

Don’t List Next Actions

Simple Productivity Blog

It is really easy to get bogged down in the minutiae. We can start thinking of all the steps that need to be done to get a specific result, and lose sight of the end game: the result itself. I find that instead of writing down the next actions, it is better to write down what I am trying to accomplish. The post Don’t List Next Actions appeared first on Laura Earnest. Getting Things Done Productivity

2019 100

30 Day Challenge: Spending Freeze

Simple Productivity Blog

My 30 Day Challenge for the month of September is a spending freeze involving no spending outside of the necessities. I will confess that I have a shopping habit. It's not for clothes or decoration or even anything big, but I still shop for a lot of stuff.

2019 130

30 Day Challenge: Touch It Once Wrapup

Simple Productivity Blog

I spent a month putting things away immediately - and found that not only were things neater, but my procrastination and stress went down too! The post 30 Day Challenge: Touch It Once Wrapup appeared first on Laura Earnest. 30 Day Challenge

2019 130

How I Process My Email (2019 Edition)

Simple Productivity Blog

How many emails are in your inbox? How much time do you spend scanning over emails that are already seen, thinking about what you have to do to each one? Inbox zero, which is not the number of emails in your inbox, minimizes the time you spend in your inbox.

2019 130

8 Productivity Lessons from the Teacher’s Desk

Simple Productivity Blog

Teachers have an immensely difficult job. Faced with a classroom of children, they have to plan the lessons, produce the materials, manage the classroom and deal with the politics of the front office and parents. If a teacher is not productive, they end up working hours beyond their contract hours and adding to their stress burden. It has been four years since I entered the classroom to teach high school math.

2019 126

How I Do Web/Blog Reading (2019 Edition)

Simple Productivity Blog

Today we take a look at a targeted way to read content from the web. I'll look at RSS readers, and share an even better way to read the content when it's convenient for you. Most bloggers will offer free content in exchange for your email address.

2019 130

How I Listen To Podcasts

Simple Productivity Blog

Podcasts are a great way to get information for a busy person. It's like blog articles in audio - you can listen on your commute, while washing dishes, weeding, exercising and more. Today we'll look at what podcasts are and how I listen to them.

2019 130

Podcast Episode 6: How I Use A Calendar

Simple Productivity Blog

Calendars form the basis of any productivity system. These are the single item that tell you where you need to be and when. But calendars have evolved massively from 30 years ago, when everything was on paper. Today I'll look at my own calendar evolution and share how I use a calendar today.

2019 130

How I Use My iPad (2019 Edition)

Simple Productivity Blog

Tablets are a great way to have productivity on the go. With the latest hardware and apps, some people are using them to replace their computers. Today I'll give you an update on how I use my iPad.

2019 130

30 Day Challenge: Touch It Once

Simple Productivity Blog

What's a great way to avoid procrastination and clutter? Touching things once. My 30 day habit for August of 2019 will be exactly this: training myself to complete little things so I don't have piles of unfinished tasks everywhere. Read more about this challenge and join me.

2019 130

30 Day Challenge: Life Reboot Wrap-Up

Simple Productivity Blog

I spent a month working through a life reboot. I found that it was useful in many ways.but that at the same time I needed to recover from a hard-drive crash of life rather than the stuffed memory that required a reboot. The post 30 Day Challenge: Life Reboot Wrap-Up appeared first on Laura Earnest.

2019 130

Stress Management From Teenagers

Simple Productivity Blog

Adults aren't the only ones who have to think about stress management. Recently, my Girl Scouts shared their favorite techniques with each other during their AP Exam week. The post Stress Management From Teenagers appeared first on Laura Earnest. Stress

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What’s the Hidden Cost?

Simple Productivity Blog

Last month I did a spending freeze. I spent no unnecessary money, and it really opened my eyes. I had gotten in the habit of running to the store with the pretext of buying something necessary, only to come home with much more. When I did the spending freeze, I realized how much extra this was costing me in both time and energy. Everything has a cost. There are no exceptions. But are you aware of the hidden costs of time and energy of areas in your life?

2019 100

Make Stress Your Friend: A TED Talk Worth Viewing

Simple Productivity Blog

Doing research into stress is enough to induce stress. Looking at all the damage that chronic or acute stress can cause to our bodies is enough to make people want to crawl into their beds and not come out.

2019 130

Podcast Episode 5: Using External Brains

Simple Productivity Blog

Our brains simply can't hold everything that goes with modern life. Add in some stress, and it's more like a sieve than a filing cabinet. Today I'll talk about some common external brains and some tips on how to use them.

2019 130

5 Advanced Stress Management Techniques

Simple Productivity Blog

Stress is everywhere in modern life. Some of it is chronic, everyday stress. And some of it can be extreme, brought on by situation and choices. Today I'll look at some advanced stress management techniques that don't get (in my opinion) enough coverage, but can be extremely useful.

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5 Basic Stress Management Techniques

Simple Productivity Blog

Stress, either chronic or acute, can have major impacts on your productivity and happiness. Today we will look at 5 basic ways to manage your stress. The post 5 Basic Stress Management Techniques appeared first on Laura Earnest. Stress

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Podcast Episode 4: The Power of Three

Simple Productivity Blog

What do you do when you've done nothing so long that it becomes a habit? Today's episode talks about how I conquered that problem with the power of three: three tasks every day, with a secret weapon. The post Podcast Episode 4: The Power of Three appeared first on Laura Earnest. Podcast

2019 130

30 Day Challenge: Life Reboot

Simple Productivity Blog

For July 2019 I am going to focus on rebooting my life: getting rid of the "programs" that no longer work and deciding what will restart. The post 30 Day Challenge: Life Reboot appeared first on Laura Earnest. 30 Day Challenge

2019 130

Stress Makes You Stupid

Simple Productivity Blog

Stress, the flight or flight response, is a necessary part of being human. It's what kept us from being eaten by things in the distant past. There are a whole lot of physical changes that occur while stressed, but there are also mental changes as well.

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Podcast Episode 11 – Why You Shouldn’t Put Tasks on Your Calendar

Simple Productivity Blog

For my monthly patron Q&A I was asked the question: "Do you put tasks on your calendar?" It's such a big question that I wanted to unpack that in a single episode, but I think it's also very important for people to hear. The post Podcast Episode 11 – Why You Shouldn’t Put Tasks on Your Calendar appeared first on Laura Earnest. Podcast

2019 100

4 Productivity Lessons From A Matching Game

Simple Productivity Blog

There are productivity lessons everywhere, if you just look. Here are four lessons I learned from a video game my daughter got me into, "We Bare Bears Match 3 Repairs.".

2019 141

In The Blink Of An Eye

Simple Productivity Blog

This is an extremely hard post for me to write. Sometimes your life can completely change in the blink of an eye. On Monday April 22, my husband and I were watching the pictures from my daughter's trip to Europe. The next minute, he was having a seizure.

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