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Brain Hacks 4 Leadership

14 EpisodesProduced by Jill Windelspecht, President of Talent Specialists ConsultingWebsite

We take neuroscience and social science and make it practical for you so you can apply these hacks/tips to improve your leadership, how you lead others and/or how you can lead your organization more effectively. We all have a brain, and we can help you use that knowledge to make you a better leader… read more

33:20

From Overwhelm to Under Control! with Josh Davis, PhD & Author of Two Awesome Hours, E:12

Do you feel overwhelmed and think that if there were just more hours in the day you could get it all done?  Instead of managing your calendar, manage your energy

Learn how one minute can save hours with my guest Josh Davis, PhD and author of the international best-seller, Two Awesome Hours.

He is Sr. Director of Research and Faculty at the Institute for Personal Leadership.  He is a trainer at the NLP Center of NY, and teaches The Art of Public Speaking.  He received his doctorate from Columbia University, then joined the psychology department at Barnard College of Columbia University, prior to working in leadership development.  His writing has appeared in Harvard Business Review, Business Insider, Fast Company, Huffington Post, strategy+business, Training + Development, People & Strategy, Psychology Today, and others. He or his work has been mentioned in the Times of London, the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, and other major media sources.

Well. Josh, thank you so much for joining us today. I really look forward to what you're going to be sharing with us on the podcast.

My pleasure. It's really nice to be back with you.

Well, Josh, why don't you tell us - what is the science that you're going to share with us today? I'm looking forward to sharing something about how the brain works that we can leverage in order to get ourselves out of that state of overwhelm when we're stuck at it being like, oh my God, it's just so much to do, right? That kind of a state and instead be able to get us to a place where we're putting our efforts into the things that really matter.

I love it. That's something I hear all the time with the executives I work with. They're overwhelmed. There's not enough time in the day and this is definitely something that is going to resonate with a lot of people.

Excellent. It just seems to be getting worse. Actually. There's more and more on everybody's plate is no longer a nice to have and I think it's becoming clear to many people that it's not going to be possible to solve this problem by trying to cram everything into the calendar. I don't know. Some of your listeners may have already come to that conclusion, but if they haven't, that's also something that I'm going to suggest.

That's great. Why don't you share some of the hacks that you have around how we can become less overwhelmed and really be more effective with our time?

Okay, so first of all, I think it's helpful to draw a contrast between what many of us do and you don't have to admit publicly that you do this, so you may recognize this behavior in yourself from time to time that you know when we get overwhelmed, what we tend to do is to just think like, well look, there's so much work to do. I just have to keep myself working constantly. I've got to work every minute. I've got to work more hours. How else am I going to do it? And logically, it makes a lot of sense. It's simple math, right? Do you have a team? You get them to do more work as well and have no downtime as much as you can. That would be a fantastic solution if what you were talking about a factory where you get the exact same output every time you run the machines and then you should just keep that thing running.

But human beings are not anything like a factory. Yeah. When it comes to this, we are different in a really important way, which is that we can be phenomenally creative, productive. We can make clearheaded decisions, we can map out plans, we can think about how to influence others, all of the things that are so key to knowledge work. We can do these things just exceptionally well at times and very quickly. You could have a morning where you're just hitting it out of the park. You're taking care of everything that was on your list, and then at other times, if you're anything like me, you can spend three days where you're, you're practically worthless. So the solution is not going to be that what would seem obvious if we were thinking about something where you get the same output every time you run it. Instead, what we need to do is to work with the way that human brains and bodies work now because we can be so quiet, impressively productive and creative at certain times and not at others.

It means there are certain conditions that helped to set that up and when you turn to the research you can learn what some of those conditions are. Some of them have to do with things like rather than trying to manage your calendar, you can be trying to manage your mental energy. You can be trying to manage your attention. There are times in the day where if you've just been through a really tough meeting, you might be highly emotional. It's actually harder to think clearly in those contexts that in those moments you actually are not as capable and you may not realize it of making good clear decisions or making them as quickly or even taking into account the same information you would under different circumstances. If it's later in the day and you've been making a lot of decisions, it has been shown with judges, for example, that they tend to make worse decisions as the day goes on and now these are decisions that have major implications for people.

Parole decisions for example, that are made later on in the Judge's day, or this side or that side of lunch, they tend to be either better or worse for the people seeking parole - that what happens is when the judges are more fresh, they are capable of and motivated to take into account more information. Now the judges are not aware of doing it differently. They still think they're doing the best they can and being very fair. Right, right. This is all happening often outside of their awareness, the brain is simply operating differently. Once you have accumulated a certain amount of mental fatigue, it is just simply harder to make those kinds of decisions. The thing is, we can take this stuff into account. Now, you can take it into account when you're about to start an important task. You could take it into account when you're planning ahead, you can say, look, this is going to come late in the day.

Then the really important negotiation, I'm going to create a space for myself to be able to refresh before that. Get a little exercise, take a nap, something like that. But Carl Icahn, famous billionaire, he is said to have scheduled frequently his really challenging negotiations in the afternoon because he knew that the other lawyer he'd be interacting with would be fatigued and then he would schedule a nap beforehand. I mean, the thing is, it's evidence. So simple. You might say, well yeah, of course I'm fresher. Of course I'm better, but yet you know what the science says you are so much fresher than you realize, the difference is extraordinary in terms of making that an incredibly productive and effective time period or not. Now you can also in the moment, when you're about to sit down to do something, say, is this the right time for it? And now you might say, well look, I'm tired all the time.

As time goes on. If you're focused on setting up these periods of time when you can be at your best and the most important work, you will find that you started doing things that enable you to not just be tired all the time, that it actually starts to lead to greater work life balance and what happens is not that you're doing everything on your list, but you're getting to that elusive goal of saying no to the things that are not as important because you're able to think more clearly about it. So I'll pause here for a moment. I've been weaving together a few different pieces.

Yeah, I really liked the fact that you talked about not managing your calendar but managing your attention and managing that calendar is something that I struggle with and other leaders struggle with. What are the things from a leadership perspective that you would recommend be on the calendar earlier in the day when you're fresher to really be more effective leading yourself and leading others?

Yes, I do have an answer for that. That I think is really an essential piece. We have to step back for a moment and think about what's really important to do day-to-day. And if you're a successful person, you could probably, you know, if we're having a conversation over beers and we were just on the weekend, at some point you could tell me, well look, these are the things that are important for me to do. You know, there's certain relationships I want to build. There's this new marketing platform I want to invest in. These articles I want to write, whatever it is, the important stuff. You could tell me that and then I could ask, how do you spend your time? How long have you been saying to yourself - that's the important stuff, right? So you know what the important stuff is usually from time to time, sure it may not be clear, but you know what the important stuff is usually.

And then we find ourselves saying, how did I just spend three hours on that, on these forms or these things that I should have outsourced that to somebody else? Or you know what? I didn't even need to do some of those , to respond to some of those emails. What, you know, what's wrong with me? Right? Right. And so we, we look at it and say like, my calendar is so packed but back to back. Right? And you know, these kinds of ways of talking to ourselves and yet at the same time we can have these experiences of wasting time feeling like we actually wasted the afternoon. We didn't get to the important stuff.

So what I'm going to suggest is that the issue is not a calendar issue. The issue is that we're not finding a way to connect with what's important. Now it's not that you don't know what's important and it's, and you've probably have read Covey and you know that you should be putting x percentage of your time into the stuff that's important and not urgent, right? You know those things. But for some reason you're not doing it well. Here is what's going on. Once you get started on a task, you get into this reactive mode. You're kind of on autopilot. You're leveraging parts of the brain that are relatively less conscious, where you're going to be relying on parts of the brain that has to do with habits, behavioral habits, habits of thought. And the thing is as we go through life, we accumulate more and more habits. And the whole point of that is that we don't have to expend as much mental energy conscious. Deliberate focus is very energy intensive and so we avoid it whenever we can. So whenever there's some kind of way of being on autopilot, we do it well. What happens is that let's say you flip open your email and you started checking it, you get on autopilot, right?

That takes over and you become reactive. As soon as, that is another way of talking about it, this reactive mode, as soon as you, you're in that reactive place, all of a sudden it's just much harder to be in touch with what's important. It's that it's hard to even recognize that you need to take a moment and step back and think about what's important and whatever you're doing in the moment. Yeah, there's some importance to it. So it's going to feel important in that moment. And so this is why we have to create opportunities and we have to start practicing doing this. To make it a habit, you have to create opportunities to break out of autopilot, to step out of that reactive mode, bring back online this conscious, deliberate attention and focus that attention on the question - "What's really important today?" You know, by the end of the day, which thing am I going to be happy that I spent some time on at the end of the week, by the end of the month, even by the end of my life, which are those things and leverage that conscious, deliberate focus that we can have when we break out of autopilot.

The thing is to break out of autopilot, you can't just willfully do it in the moment. It's so strong, it's very hard to willfully break out of it. So you've got to plan ahead. And one of the things you started out by asking me "What can you do first thing in the morning?". First thing in the morning, and I would actually recommend doing this a couple of different points in the day, like first thing in the morning and then right before you actually started your first task in case things have shifted or just to help you refocus is to how, it can even just be one minute. It could be 10 minutes, but it could even just be one minute where you have freed yourself out from being reactive. The computer is not open so you couldn't be responding. Your phone is not in your hand, so you can't be responding to it.

When there are not other people in front of you, so you can't just be reacting to them, but you create a space where you can actually step back, often physically, I encourage you to physically step back from the desk if you can and just pause until you can connect with and remember, okay, what is that important stuff? Once you have that in mind, then if you're a competent person, you're going to be able to find ways to think about -  okay, you know, what? Could I afford to spend some time on that right now? If not, when can I do that today and how can I make it so that I'm going to be mentally fresh when I get to that point? Does it mean that I want to do it after lunch, before lunch? Create a little bit of a break, do some exercise right before to reset. That, if that's the important stuff, then it's the important stuff. And what happened is that it also becomes much easier to say, look, here are some of the things that I'm, I'm going to save for when I'm fatigued or I'm just not going to get to, right? Because it's not the important stuff. But the thing is you've got to leverage those moments that you build into the day to do that because you're not going to be able to catch yourself and think about it as you're going through the day. Once you are in reactive mode, you're in reactive mode. So that's something that I think is absolutely critical to do at the beginning of the day. And of course you can do it multiple times a day and should, you know, put it on your calendar or the beginning of any new task or the end of the meeting. Have one of those moments where you step back and you'd do that. I call them decision points. So I think that's perhaps the most important thing that I can offer actually in terms of reclaiming your day and doing the stuff that matters and doing it well.

Yeah, I love that. I got that from your recent book, Two Awesome Hours, where it talks about those key decision points and knowing when you have to make those decisions on either, like you said, going forward with the work you're doing or stopping and saying, is this really where I need to spend my time? That's really powerful.

In those decision points you can also, after you've connected with what's really important, you can also just quickly check in and think about how, how mentally energize or fatigued to am I right now? Because I don't know about you, but I can sometimes, if I'm sitting at the computer and I am in reactive mode and I'm doing stuff, I can think like, you know what, I feel fine. I could keep going for another couple of hours, but once I step away and I go get that coffee or something and I'm standing there, I realized how clouded my thinking is. Yeah. And I realized this is not the time to tackle those challenging issues that I'm going to do it in half the time if I wait till the morning, you know, or if I wait till a little bit later and I'm going to do it better and this is the time for me to do something else. So, so you can also check in on your mental energy in those moments you can make a big difference.

Yeah, I think that's a great point. Especially the standing up, moving around, catching yourself, even if you took a minute, right, you said, this isn't a, you're not talking 15 to 20 minutes meditation, you're talking one minute, get up and really move yourself away and, and check with what's going on. I think that's a really powerful tip and something that I know I need to do more myself and I know it makes a big difference when I get up and walk around throughout the day, keeping me fresh.

One minute to save hours.

Right. Especially if you got in that rut, that rut of maybe checking email or focusing on something that's more of a tactical task in the morning. So Josh, how have you applied this to yourself?

Oh, you know, that was one of the wonderful things about writing this book. You know, I already had some ideas. There were some things I had experimented with, but when I did the research, I started to, you know what? I started to believe it a lot more to be honest. Yeah. And so I would actually go and experiment. I mean, I was like, oh wow. You know, these things do make a difference. So, for example, , and this was something that you shared this with me earlier, that you went ahead and and redesigned your office. Right? That's so me. Even now that I know that essentially my attention systems are designed to pick up on things that are sitting around precisely, you know, that's what it is for. My attention systems are not designed to stay focused, they are designed to pick up on whats changing, what needs attention, what is threatening, things like that and all the things that are sitting on my desk are things that I owe to somebody or I forgot to do, or it was important or it seemed hard.

They're exactly the things that are going to take my attention. It is simply not fair to myself to sit down at a desk littered with these things. It's so much extra mental work. I'm fatiguing myself unnecessarily. Every time I get distracted, my mind's gonna wander to one of those things instead of wander to creative solutions on whatever I'm doing, right? And so I've just gone ahead, you know, I was not somebody who cleaned up my desk and cleared things away all the time. And now you walk into my office and there's nothing on the desk. You know, even like people see it and they sort of, they comment on it. They're like, oh wow. You know, and, and whenever there is a shared space that I'm using, you know, people come in, they always want to sit down on my desk because it's the cleanest one, because they're drawn to that too.

They know it's going to be easier for them, right? And it's easier physically to sit down, but also mentally it's easier. So I mean those are some of the things. And there's another one was like learning about how exercise, you know, we think of exercise as this thing that it's like, well if I exercise I'll probably be healthier long term. And of course that'll help my work. Cause if I'm healthier I won't miss work and blah, blah, blah, Right? That's motivating to some degree. You know, it's like I don't want to die young. Yeah. Right. There is some motivation. But what that motivates me to do is a few times a week go and try to work out for an hour, an hour and a half, really hard, right? And it could happen anytime. I could do it right before going to sleep, but now I've seen that exercise is one of the most reliable ways to reduce anxiety in the short term. Meaning like in the next few hours. So if I want to reduce my anxiety and have an easy time paying attention, easy time staying present, essentially letting go of the things that don't matter, exercise is a virtual guarantee, and it doesn't have to be for an hour or two hours. Moderate exercise, 20 minutes on the treadmill, working up a little bit of a sweat breathing heavily, that's going to give me those psychological benefits actually better than if I'm really pushing hard and then I don't want to waste those on sleeping. I mean, sure it will help me sleep. It's nice, not a waste. These are the things I want to strategically use for the immediate benefit. All of a sudden I can just switch into a state where I'm less anxious and more present and have an easier time focusing. Anytime I'm doing important work, that's where I want to be.

So now all of a sudden exercise become something that I'm using strategically. I was able to exercise every day. You know, I really, I exercise every day, sometimes a couple of times a day, just briefly if it's going to be key for work, I use it as a strategic tool. So actually thinking of exercise as this strategic work tool has gotten me to exercise more regularly then when I was exercising for its own sake. So as a result of having the health benefits too. That was a big shift for me, was that exercise is a strategic tool to be used for that day or your work capability that day and it's a reset button. You can do it anytime if you need to reset, there's an important thing later in the day, you're having a tough morning, you can build it in. Those were a couple things I think were really unexpected that were kind of real pleasures of doing this research. Changed how I function.

That's great. What's the exercise? Can it be 10 minutes walking? Maybe brisk walk outside if you don't have a treadmill or something available for you throughout the day?

So there's a slightly more nuanced answer to that. Short answer is yes, but the longer answer is that some of the psychological benefits will occur from something like just 10 minutes of something that you do have to get your heart rate up. You do have to, you know, you want to be breathing heavily. Maybe getting to the point of almost breaking a sweat, but it should not be more than moderate. So if you want all of the benefits then moderate exercise is key. If it's a brisk walk, often it doesn't need to be longer. Like if it's a brisk walk and you're not actually breaking a sweat, then what would get to that level of moderate exercise from, in terms of the physiological factors that are changing, it would probably be more like a 40 minute walk. You know, like going for a brisk walk at lunch kind of thing or a brisk walk while you're having a meeting or something like that. You know, a walk and talk kind of thing could be done if you've got somebody else's really on onboard with that. Something really brief. 10 minutes, you know, going up and down the stairs, doing a few jumping jacks, that kind of thing. But you know this also depends on the person, what's going to count as something that requires exertion.

Great point to mention how in shape you are, how far you can walk in and what it will take to do that. I know people who might be in less good shape might have an advantage here because there's a little bit less time they could put it into it and still get some of that. I haven't experimented with that. I just had that thought in the moment.

One of my favorite executives that I worked for, every morning he made sure that there were not meeting scheduled before eight o'clock. It was a rare exception because it was so important for him to make sure that he did get exercise and work out that morning because it just made a difference in his day.

Yeah. That's great that you have that have that reference experience. Nelson Mandela made it a part of his daily routine in jail. He would actually run in place for 45 minutes cause he knew that it made him so much mentally sharper, is how he described it.

Yeah. Well Josh, have you worked with any other leaders or organizations to implement some of these techniques to help them with overwhelm or just be more effective?

So I have had a number of opportunities to go in to companies, share these ideas and the different ways that people apply it are just to me, kind of extraordinary. Ways that I wouldn't have expected, you know? So you've got some people, let's say salesforce, that might be in cars all the time, right? And so you think like, oh, well how are they going to apply some of these things, right? They have these very restricted physical locations. And here I've got people talking about how they're able to take exceptional advantage of the idea of these decision points because they have this forced time when they can't be writing, they can't be staring at something else. And so rather than just putting on something to listen to, they're deliberately taking some elements of that time to do some of these decision points and as well as some elements of the time to do something else I talk about in the book, which is really great for fostering creativity and then ending up working less. And I have had, now this will sound like bragging a little bit. I've had people come back to me and say, I have a new problem. Some of my colleagues are getting frustrated with me because they feel like I'm not essentially overworking myself. I'm not, you know, it used to be a badge of honor for everyone to talk about how hard they're working, how many hours they're putting in, how exhausted they are. And to be honest, I'm getting what I need to get done. In fact, I'm getting more of it done and I'm not as exhausted and I'm not staying late all the time. And I've had a couple of people who were sort of frustrated with that, what do I do about that? And I, you know, so there's a famous psychotherapist who once said "progress is moving from the same damn thing over and over again to one damn thing after another." So that's where we want to get. It's like, let's get to that point, let's change that culture.

Let's start deciding, well what is it for me, that counts as success and look, some people have been very clever, right? You know, there are some situations, and I've been in these from time to time who I've learned to not let people see that I have work life balance because I know they're not ready for it. So, I don't know if that's where you're going with the question, but those are some of the things that I have heard and worked with people in financial institutions and the big names places and then worked with people in pharmaceutical companies and various different types of industries and different types of levels as well. There's one group that made it a big part of their onboarding program based on this book. You know, there's been different ways that people have implemented this, but those are some of the kinds of things that I'm, I'm very happy to say do really seem to make a big difference. And I also kind of want to let people know it is possible.

That's a great problem to have that you know, people look at you and you are so put together, you know, don't seem to be stressing as much as they are. But tell me a little bit more about some examples of decision points that they were making - the salesforce.

So I did not in this specific example I was offering, I didn't actually probe and get a whole list of the specific decisions. There's a couple of things that I did get that I can share it so I don't have a whole lot of examples in this case. But one example would be there are certain key accounts and look, everybody knows they need to be putting in, every salesperson knows they need to be putting in more into their key accounts, right? Because these are going to have an outsized impact, right? And therefore need outsized attention and yet it doesn't always work out that way because of the amount of time, the amount of effort that can just go into these other leads. And I'm like you don't know exactly where they're going, right? It can draw your attention and can really like, you don't want to leave any stone unturned. And so it's actually a very disciplined, conscious decision to actually come back and be able to say, "All right, let me step back and look at the big picture here and be very strategic about where my attention is going and about which relationships I want to nurture so that these key accounts, they are getting the love from me that they need on a regular basis." So some days where it could have been days that would go by without them getting the attention because you're attending to these other things, but ultimately you actually don't think need as much attention - its that kind of a shift.

Actually intentionally looking and saying, where am I spending my time? And there's a lot of mental offered on client that's not as high a return as others. And it's about being intentional. And the thing is, nothing I'm going to say here, is going to be rocket science, you know? And that's, but that's the point, these are things that we can know ...we're just not doing them. So what I want to suggest is that if we want to learn to do them, we can take advantage of understanding how the brain works and how, where we get into these pitfalls, how we get stuck and when we have the opportunities to think differently, what we would have to do to be, to step back and connect to what matters.

That's great. I love that. So as leaders listening to this podcast and thinking about, Gosh, I am at the overwhelmed stage, or I'd love to have that work life balance problem where it, you know, I've got it pretty much under control. What's one thing that they could do right away after listening to this? One small thing that could make a big difference?

So there's also a phrase from psychotherapy that "You're looking for the difference that makes the difference". So I will suggest that the thing that makes the difference may be different for different people. But if this is something you're not already doing, then I would say see what happens this week. If you give yourself one minute when you get to your office, when you sit down, before you look at any media, before you look at email, before you open your computer, where you pause and you think about "what's the really important stuff that matters to me today and when during the day am I going to do that?" If you just give yourself that one minute, once a day, each day this week, just try it and notice what happens. Now if that is something that you're already doing, then what I would invite you to do is to go to the next step and during that one minute to ask yourself, "what's my mental energy like right now and as a result, do I want to reorder how I'm doing things?"

If there is a really important presentation coming up in an hour and I don't want to be fatigued for it, maybe now is not the time for me to go and make a whole lot of meaningless decisions about emails that are just going to get me kind of frustrated. Maybe now is the time for me to go and do something creative. That's going to get me energized for this and you might end up coming to a different decision if you're thinking about what's the mental energy I want to show up to that meeting for. So that's the second thing you might do during that minute.

I love that. Yeah, just that short reflection time, if they're not doing, can make a big difference. And sometimes it's right after you wake up because that's when people check their media.

Yes, yes. Most of us have our phones as our clock right by the bedside and pull it up and you know, you're curious and sometimes it's exciting, sometimes even want to see what there is. And regardless if you pull that up, just realize you'd get into reactive mode and look, you can recover from that, but you'll need to have some planned time to step back. But at some point that morning before you really get into things, I recommend if you're open to it, to experiment with not even looking at it until some specified time of the day, like 10:00 AM or even later, you know, just to discover what happens for one week. Just discover, do I actually survive the week? Am I still alive at the end? Do I still have a job, right? Did I end up making different decisions as a result of giving myself that mental freedom in the morning? Yeah. So if you're willing to try that, I encourage you.

That's great. I think that's a great tip to start and you have so many great tips in here too in your book Two Awesome Hours. Like I told you, I did read it and I have been applying it and I like that you've got tips in here, not just for yourself but from almost an organization perspective and environment and a space perspective. So I'd really recommend everyone get a copy of Two Awesome Hours and read that. Its a really easy read as well and it's very practical and it's not sciencey. So you did a great job with that too.

Thank you. Thank you. I, you know, I worked hard on all of those things. I'm glad to know that you had that reaction. And you know, you remind me of one thing also is that when everybody else in your environment knows the same thing, you can support one another in it. Right? You know, you can know, you can leave one another alone when you're thinking, for example.

From a culture perspective, what you uncovered I think has a lot of implications that leaders and HR leaders too can really be thinking about, to set the right environment for their teams. Oh, wonderful. Yeah. Yeah. Well, thank you so much. I really appreciate your time today and I just wanted to check in with you and say, was there anything else that you wanted to share? Anything you've, maybe you're working on next?

Oh, thank you. Thank you. Yes, for those people who do find public speaking to be a challenge, I'll just put this out there as a teaser that, it is possible to actually learn to not just get through it, but to enjoy it. And so if you're curious about that, then you know, look me up on Linkedin and you'll see the next time I'm offering the course. I've been teaching it for many years and it's a very different approach to public speaking. It's about how to learn how to enjoy it. And it is also science based, research based, drawing on tools from the behavioral sciences and psychotherapy as well. Oh, that's excellent. And so they should just look up Josh Davis on Linkedin. Josh Davis, Phd, there's a ton of Josh Davis's, everybody had the same idea to name their kids that at the same time, but, but Josh Davis Phd will take you there and that way you'll see the next time I'm doing it, I do them in LA and sometimes in New York. Great, and I'll put your information on the transcripts as well.

Well Josh, I really appreciate you spending time with us. I look forward to having you back to share more of your work. Maybe your next book. I'm sure you're working on your next book at this point, right? Yeah, just beginning it. Oh, okay. Yeah, just beginning the process right now, so yes, I would love to come back. All right, well thank you and I hope you have a great day. All right, thanks. Take care.

So to recap, to get ourselves out of that state of overwhelm when we're stuck thinking we have so much to do, we can utilize decision points to get us to a place where we're putting our efforts into things that really matter. The issue is not a calendar issue. The issue is that we're not finding a way to connect with what's important. Avoid getting into that reactive mode or autopilot. Create decision points and put them on your calendar because you're not going to be able to catch yourself and think about it as you're going through the day without being intentional. You have too many habits that you've built.

Josh also reminded us of the psychological benefits of exercise, even 30 to 40 minutes of moderate exercise to keep your mind fresh.

Here's one thing to try over the next week. Give yourself one minute when you get to your office, when you sit down, before you look at any media, look at any email and before you open your computer.  Pause and think about what's the really important stuff that matters to me today and when during the day am I going to do that? If you just gave yourself that one minute once a day, each day this week, just try it and notice what happens.

As Josh shared one minute to save hours, I really recommend reading his book Two Awesome Hours: Science-Based Strategies to Harness Your Best Time and Get Your Most Important Work Done, it has some great tips in there. I hope that this was helpful to you and I would love to hear how you're implementing these tips yourself. I use these myself and share them with the leaders that I coach.

Want to know more about what Josh is doing - www.twoawesomehours.com is the place to go.  Linkedin is also a way to connect with Josh.

If you're interested in coaching or leadership development for yourself or your organization, please reach out to me directly by email at jillwindel@talentspecialists.net

Have an amazing day.

 

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