10 Tips to Celebrate 10 Years

What are your top tips for overwhelmed professionals?

Before I give you mine, I’m happy to share that the first entry in my business checkbook is 4/22/2005 and we’ve been celebrating the 10th Birthday of HOPE all month. (Did you enter the drawing for the Chick-Fil-A gift cards yet?)

Thought it’d be fun to list 10 tips to help overwhelmed professionals, as we continue to celebrate on the theme of 10. So in no particular order:

1. Maintain one calendar but a few task lists. Since you can (conceivably) only be in one place at a time, keeping one calendar is helpful. However, keeping a separate task list for home, work, and errands can keep your mind less cluttered.

2. Invest in your professional development a little each week. You can do this by reading articles, blog posts, taking a class (such as what I offer in virtual training classrooms), etc. You don’t have to do hours worth of study a week…just learn something new.

3. Take time for yourself each workday. Even if only for 15 minutes, get away from your work for a bit each day. Take a walk. Get outside for a few minutes. Enjoy a casual chat at the coffee pot.

4. Avoid overuse of sticky notes. These things can proliferate all over your desk and monitor and can either start to blend in with your environment or constantly remind you of something undone.

5. Use a small dry erase board to jot notes that are temporary. This centralizes your doodles and quick figuring and is easily erased, keeping your desk neater.

6. Arrive a few minutes early. It is so much nicer to be able to catch your breath, take your coat off, boot up your computer, etc. first before having to launch into answering questions or the phone.

7. Develop a helpful “closing shop” routine. About ten minutes before you leave, begin to shut down your workspace. Leave it neat, and consider what you have going on the next day. Take a look at your calendar, move undone tasks to the next day or so, and even wipe off the desk surface.

8. Have healthy routines at home. A solid morning and evening routine can set you up for better days, whether going to work or for spending on your own time. Examples: setting outfits out the night before, packing lunches, having a morning quiet time.

9. Try to meet new people. Both online and real life opportunities about to expand your network. Often, people who are at least acquainted with a number of folks have someone to call on when they need someone with a particular expertise. Some jobs even come about because “someone knows someone.” Be kind, be sincere.

10. Be responsive. A major problem in business today is lack of response. It’s as if emails and voice mails go into black holes. It doesn’t build credibility and trust–something desperately needed if you want to build a loyal client base. If you are too busy to respond, it’s time to consider an assistant–in person or virtually.

Join the conversation: What would you add to this list?

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