Your Passport Out Of 2015

by  Paula Kiger  |  Team Dynamics
Your Passport Out Of 2015

As this week kicks off, many people are undoubtedly finding their schedule off kilter.

Perhaps you are finishing up your work so that you can enjoy a few days off. Maybe your personal to-do list is top-heavy with gifts to buy, treats to bake, homes to decorate.

Whatever the case with 10 days left in the year, we are taking advantage of Kevin Eikenberry’s Five Ways To Make Your December More Productive to make the last ten days of 2015 the best ten days of 2015.

Just like your passport gets stamped every time you go somewhere new, consider each of these five steps a stamp toward destination productivity 2016.

Kevin Infographic Big

Here are a few highlights from our Lead Change community to rack up those productivity stamps:

Move While Others Rest

Why not gift yourself some 12-minute segments of focus between now and December 31? Read Why Focusing In 12-Minute Bursts Can Improve Your Productivity by Weaving Influence Founder Becky Robinson for ways to structure those segments. In twelve minutes you could make a dent in an email backlog, draft your next blog post, or touch base with that contractor to make sure that question they asked last week was answered. You could buy yourself a little bit of peace of mind and a lot of satisfaction.

Learn From The People You Are With

With this concept, we are reminded to move beyond small talk in order to explore the ideas of others. Many in our Lead Change community are in businesses which aspire to provide excellent customer service. For Leading Voice Cheryl Bachelder, CEO of Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen, the Why Question is as important for adults as it is for toddlers.

She says, “Knowing why you are working on something elevates the importance of the work and your engagement in the work. If the why energizes you, then the work is energizing.”

Take a moment to dig deeply into the why of one of your work tasks or work relationships. If you are a leader, take time to nurture an interest in the why among your staff.

Capture The Energy Of The Season

Noting the heightened energy of this time of year, we are encouraged to soak up the positivity and goodwill around us. Leading Voice Susan Mazza has a captivating and motivational take on energy in 7 Steps To Break The Cycle Of Inaction.

She shares, “once you are in action, with each action you take toward your goals, you gain momentum.”

Has a particular cause or initiative captured your imagination this year? Why not surprise yourself by taking the first step to get involved?

Reflect On The Past 11 Months

Doesn’t January 2015 seem like an extremely long time ago? If you want to take a quick tour through the year and test your recall, take the New York Times Farewell 2015 Quiz.

One suggestion from a Lead Change Instigator which can inform your approach to 2016 comes from Sean Glaze, in Why Maps Are Cheap & Great Tour Guides Are Invaluable.

Sean talks about why it can be worth it sometimes to invest in the “tour guide who knows that they are talking about” rather than trying to be frugal and settling for a pre-printed map.

Which did you do in 2015? Consider investing in the kind of professional support for 2016 that can help you be the best you possible.

Use The Golden Week

How will you spend the week between Christmas and New  Year’s? Kevin suggests taking advantage of the fact that fewer people around you are working. Fewer interruptions may mean more productivity. We can’t think of anyone better to spur us on to use time effectively than Instigator, Hyrum W. Smith, co-creator of the Franklin Planner.

There you have it. Five constructive tips amplified by five expanded thoughts from our dynamic Lead Change Community.

In closing, thank you to Kevin Eikenberry for the use of this infographic. Lastly, thank you to Instigator Chery Gegelman for a sentiment she shared in a blog chronicling the opportunity she had to fulfill her lifelong dream of interacting with a lion when she visited Africa earlier this year.

Your perspective will become your prison or your passport.
~ Steven Furtick

Here’s to a world of possibilities in 2016!

Which of the five tips are you likely to use first?
Photo Credit: Fotolia mizar_21984

About The Author

Articles By paula-kiger
Paula believes her Twitter bio says it best: Wife of one, Mom of two, Friend of many. She is a communications professional who provides writing, editing and social media services through Big Green Pen. She was the community manager for the Lead Change Group for two years. Paula has a Master’s Degree in Counseling and Human Systems from Florida State University. She is an active advocate for many causes.  »  View Profile

What People Are Saying

Jane  |  21 Dec 2015  |  Reply

I love this! I was attracted by the infograph but was really drawn in by the suggestions following. I’m going to revisit Becky’s 12 minutes article – which was my actual first introduction to her back in 2013. Cheryl Bachelder’s ‘know why’ dovetails with my method of regaining momentum by asking myself, “If this were my company, what would I want me to be doing right now?” And oh my goodness! The tip about the tour guide? That is so me and my husband. I urge him to pay for the tour guide and get something from the tour. Well, OK, urge is the mild version. Beg, insist, demand are a bit closer to reality. Lastly, Chery’s chronicle of her lion experience was one I read over and over. If you haven’t read it, click the link and go there now.

Paula Kiger (Big Green Pen)  |  21 Dec 2015  |  Reply

Thanks, Jane! It was fun going through a bunch of Leading Voice/Instigator posts to find ideas that matched up with the infographic steps! At first, I felt like it was a stretch to match that map/tour guide one to Step 4 but it really did speak to me. I’m glad the same was true for you!!

Haralee  |  21 Dec 2015  |  Reply

I hope to use them all! Year end in my business means lots of compiling of data and analyzing the data to make the next year decisions.

Paula Kiger (Big Green Pen)  |  21 Dec 2015  |  Reply

Glad to hear they may be of assistance, Haralee!!

Paul LaRue  |  21 Dec 2015  |  Reply

Paula, this is a great tool and plan to end the year on a high note. Mary Ila Ward wrote a great post last week on spending one of the last weeks of the year in planning out the next – this dovetails nicely. Thanks!

Paula Kiger (Big Green Pen)  |  21 Dec 2015  |  Reply

Thanks, Paul! And I wasn’t aware of Mary Ila’s post — I’ll have to look it up!

John E. Smith  |  22 Dec 2015  |  Reply

Well, I hate to be the voice of dissent …

Actually, I don’t mind at all:)

I DO appreciate these guidelines on how to be more productive and think that, with a little editing, work quite nicely for the entire year. I remember one job where I lived approximately one block off campus from my office. My habit was to go in to work early (4 AM) and I would have a large block of work done before anyone else showed up or the students began to stir.

However, I do think that there is value in NOT being productive all the time, and especially during the Golden Week. I have long treasured this “time between” as the bustle of Christmas fades and the New Year is not yet here.

I find this a fertile time for thinking and reflection, but try to actively avoid doing much of anything. In my experience, the time has been well spent, and overall I have come into the new year with a clearer idea of what I do need to get busy doing.

… plus, I like to relax and just go outside a lot, while everyone else is busy returning and exchanging gifts and writing resolutions that will probably not outlast the first sunrise of the new year:)


Paula Kiger (Big Green Pen)  |  22 Dec 2015  |  Reply

I appreciate your perspective, John! I don’t know if your comment is dissent so much as discernment! I think prioritizing “the golden week” as one for “down time” is a wise choice as well. In your case, I know it’ll pay off in a bunch of awesome content for Lead Change in 2016, so I don’t mind at all and in fact encourage it! :-)

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