Tuesday, 21 April 2009

The Importance Of 660 Seconds When You Are Busy Juggling

This is an edited extract from 'Juggle! Rethink Work, Reclaim Your Life'

When you’re working flat out, give yourself a treat, however small in time or value.

I am working at home today writing this book and dealing with some projects. It’s early evening and I fancied a beer so I went down to the kitchen to get one. My two year old son intercepted me and wanted me to play football with him in the garden before bed-time. I obliged. We had great fun, kicking the ball around in the late sun. Now I’m back at my desk in work mode and diving into some emails. i-Tunes is still playing on shuffle and tells me 11 minutes has elapsed since I was last at my desk.

11 minutes.
Just 660 seconds.
Not long.

Enough time to go to your workspace kitchen and get a coffee, or if you’re a smoker to go down to the lobby and huddle on the pavement with a cigarette. Or enough time to get lost in a random website. But 11 minutes with my boy was – literally – the highlight of my day. No debate.

Never-underestimate the power of small nuggets of reward when you are juggling. They are so very important. You need a pay-off if the stuff you’re doing today/ next week is tough or dull (or both).

So give yourself a reward; something you want to do, or that will give you a feel good factor. Stuff like:

- A lunch out, not at your desk.
- The gym or a run.
- Write a blog post.
- A bar of chocolate this afternoon when your energy levels are flagging.
- Look forward to that first beer of the day when you finish work.
- Treat yourself to a take-away dinner tonight.
- A quick game of football with your son.

It may sound silly, but that goal of a reward can really motivate you when your energy levels or morale is flagging. It will inspire great results.

Create a 660 Second break in your day.

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