Tag Archives: career

Creating Your 61-Day Plan

iGnite - how do you spend your time

Point to Ponder:
How will you spend the last 61 days of 2015?

by Neissa Brown Springmann

by Neissa Brown Springmann

Whew, It’s November! And who doesn’t love November? Delicious temperatures, daylight savings (more sleep-YAY!), fall clothing, colorful foliage, and of course, time with family during the Thanksgiving holiday. While all of this makes my heart really happy, I get heart palpitations when I think about having only two months, i.e. sixty-one days left in the year, yet so much to do! How did that happen?!

I subscribe to several blogs and recently Austin-based Life Coach and Speaker, Renee Trudeau posted an excellent article on not only defining our life vision, but more realistically defining a vision for the next 90-days. In our case, that is the next sixty-one days, and because last week we determined what we’ve had enough of and will not include in our 2015 finale, the next step is to define and be intentional with how we spend our time throughout the next sixty-one days. Renee suggests these two questions for helping define your vision:

  1. What is uniquely mine to do? and
  2. What is the best use of my energy and talents in the next sixty-one days?

What I appreciate about Renee’s intentional strategy is the practicality of focusing on ninety or sixty days. It’s not overwhelming because I can actually see, feel and touch this time frame. In addition to answering those 2 questions and getting in the right frame of mind, Renee also recommends setting aside time in a distraction-free peaceful setting where you can create the following lists:

  • List all activities that fuel you (activities that give you energy, nourish you, and make you feel alive)
  • List all all activities that drain you (create physical tightness or discomfort in your back belly or neck every time they cross your consciousness). Often these “drains” are things like a financial issue that must be handled, a touchy conversation that you’ve been avoiding having, a disorganized office space at work or home, or a career issue that needs to be addressed

Address the ‘drains’ with an aggressive housecleaning mindset, giving yourself three options for handling each energy zapper:

1) “Just do it:” Set a deadline for when you can complete the project
2) Delegate It: Ask for help if needed, or outsource the task
3) Dump It: Walk away from the task or decide it isn’t going to happen (at least not in
the next sixty-one days)

Ultimately, the goal within the next sixty-one days is to not let life “just happen” or be filled with random action, enery-suckers and unfulfilling activities. Instead, let’s get the most out of it and make it great by striving to be prayerful and intentional about how we use our time, energy and talents. We can do this!

Action Item:
Create your 61-day plan by completing the activities suggested by Renee Trudeau:
1. Answer her 2 questions for defining your vision
2. Create your “fueling” and “draining” activities lists
3. Assign your “draining” activities one of the 3 categories above

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Member Spotlight: Susan Palombo

      Susan with her sweet father

                Susan with her sweet dad

Roots:
I was born and raised in Tulsa, OK, went to UT Austin for undergraduate (Plan II), then moved to Minneapolis, MN and lived there for 30 years. We have been back in Austin for 1 year and are loving it!

Basic Family Stats:
I have been married for 32 years to John Palombo. We have three children. Nick, 26, is a middle school science teacher in St. Louis. Michael, 22, and his twin sister, Megan, graduated in May — Michael from Vanderbilt and Megan from UT Austin. Michael has moved to Austin for a job with GLG Consulting, and Megan is interviewing.

Current/Previous Occupation:
I love my career, which is helping individuals and families feel better about their path to reach their family, foundation and financial goals through our Wealth Management practice with Merrill Lynch.

Biggest lesson learned through iGnite experience:
Working out with positive trainers and friends outside in the Austin sunshine with iGnite is such a fabulous experience. Working out doesn’t have to be “bootcamp with pain and suffering!”

Best advice I’ve been given:
Through his wonderful examples, my 90 year old active and healthy father has taught me so much. One particularly pertinent lesson is: Listen more, talk less.

In my free time, I like to:
Be outdoors in nature, read and get together with family and friends.

If I were a pair of shoes, I would be:
I still have my hiking boots from 5th grade, and I think I would be them. They are long-lasting and reliable, strong and functional, outdoors-loving, well-loved leather
with beautiful patina and comfortable and sturdy boots. They have traveled a lot of miles, covered a variety of terrain, scaled some altitude, grown up and matured, made some mistakes, saved my life and witnessed a lot of conversations by hundreds of bonfires. These boots have lots of energy and endurance. They have been a good friend to me. I hope that I can be that good of a friend to others.

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Don’t Break Your Chain

Don't Break the Chain

It’s not about being the best. It’s about being better than you were yesterday.
– Unknown

A few weeks ago, an iGnite Member sent me a quote, which happens to be our quote-of-the-week. I thought it was a brilliant quote, as the pressure of being ‘the best’ is overwhelming, daunting, and requires a winner and loser.  The idea of striving to be better everyday is personal and less competitive, making the goal much more achievable and enjoyable. At the time, I knew I wanted to incorporate the quote into a journal entry, but I wasn’t exactly sure how it would happen, as my intention is to let each entry grow organically and authentically. Sure enough, just as I was thinking about how I would use the quote, I ran across an article by Darren Hardy featuring Jerry Seinfield. This is what it said:

A young comic asked Jerry Seinfeld if he had any tips for him starting out as a comic. What he told the young comic would benefit him for a lifetime. Seinfeld told the comic that the way to be a better comic was to create better jokes. And the way to create better jokes was to write every day.
But his advice went further. He explained a technique that he uses to keep himself motivated, even when he doesn’t feel like it. Jerry explained the calendar system he uses to pressure himself to write. Here’s how it works:
He said, “Get a big wall calendar that has a whole year on one page and hang it on a prominent wall. Maybe somewhere your family can see or your office mates. The next step is to get a red magic marker. For each day you complete the task of writing, put a big red X over that day. After a few days you’ll have a chain. Just keep at it and the chain will grow longer every day. You’ll like seeing that chain, especially when you get a few weeks under your belt. Your only job next is to not break the chain.”
Seinfeld understands that daily action yields greater benefits than sitting down and trying to knock out 300 jokes in one day. This calendar system works because it visually reinforces us to stick with that consistent daily action. Skipping one day makes it easier to skip the next.

The visual of not breaking the chain resonates with me. Each consecutive day I don’t break my chain will allow me to be better than the day before, just as the quote states. In addition, every day that I take action towards my goal will strengthen my ability to be my best, and will build discipline and positive momentum for my goal and my life in general.

Honestly, I have not chosen my goal, habit, or positive action yet; however, I have come up with a multitude of positive actions that, if implemented everyday, would lead to incredible results. For example: drink 64 oz. of water a day, take my vitamins, tell my family I love them, write a note to a friend, exercise, pray, journal, get 7-9 hours of sleep each night, eat at home vs. eat out…

Literally, the list is infinite, but as Jerry suggests, “just choose one and purchase your wall calendar and a red magic marker.” Then, start your objective and don’t break your chain to being your best and better than you were yesterday.

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Point To Ponder:

If implemented everyday, what habit, behavior or action would make the greatest impact on your life?

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Action Item:

Determine your habit, behavior, or action. Then purchase your wall calendar, red marker and start your chain!

To your health,

About Neissa

Neissa

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