Photo by Joshua Sukoff on Unsplash

Eliminate Moments of Choice to preserve your time

Three seconds ago, you had a Moment of Choice.

You had to decide if you were going to click and read this article or not.

Chances are you didn’t pause and say to yourself, “Hmmm, this is a Moment of Choice; what’s my decision? What am I going to choose to do?” Instead, without even thinking, you clicked. And here you are. (Thank you for that.)

This was not your first Moment of Choice of the day, nor will it be your last.

Moments of Choice constantly show up in your life. They are the decision points where you have…


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The three things no one talks about

Over the past year or so, millions of people have been introduced to the wonders of Working From Home (WFH) for the first time.

They’ve learned to put “offices” together in their dining room and the intricacies of Zoom calls that take up full days. They’ve learned to dress for comfort, if not success (and that pants sometimes really are optional.) And they’ve found the joy (and frustration) in spending more time (waaaaay more time) with their families.

Now many of the former WFH rookies are seasoned experts and want to continue the WFH life because of its upsides. …


Keep your brain in one room.

The secret to getting things done lies in treating your brain like a house

Think about what a regular day looks like for you and how many things are constantly fighting for your attention. Whether it’s your phone, your family, the current news, social media, your co-workers, or another Zoom meeting, the battle for your attention is genuine and never-ending.

Often, it might feel like the best answer is to do as many things at once as you can: make breakfast while watching the news and talking to your kids about what is happening at school, all while you are mentally planning your day. But none of this even remotely resembles focus. Because it…


Say it early and often

The secret that E. B. White knew…and you should too

One of the most powerful ways to protect your time, energy, and ultimately, your happiness is one that often feels the hardest to do.

It doesn’t involve downloading an app or any complicated steps. You’re never limited in how often you can use it. It’s simply saying “No” to the things that don’t align with your goals for your time and energy and your future. This applies whether that future is this afternoon or in two months.

Saying “No” is the one-syllable way to protect and preserve not only your time but also your sanity.

One of my favorite ways…


man in flower field shooting photos
man in flower field shooting photos
Photo by Alex Bracken on Unsplash

What do fields of flowers have to do with your ability to focus? A lot more than you might think.

For a moment, let’s imagine you are in a field of beautiful spring flowers taking photo after photo of the blooms in front of you. You and your camera are focused only on the gorgeous flowers. There are no distractions. Just flowers.

This is deep focus, camera style.

This is the kind of focus you want in your everyday life. Deep and intense. (Flowers are, of course, optional.) Deep focus is where your brain functions most efficiently, allowing you to get more done because you have only one thing to concentrate on.

Unfortunately, all too often, you are confronted with…


Marvin Meyer for Unsplash

Distractions are the main reason you procrastinate and find it hard to focus

How often do you find yourself distracted throughout the day? Chances are the answer is “more than I’d like to be.”

Anything that prevents you from doing what you need to get done can be classified as a distraction. The distractions that have the worst reputation (and deservedly so) are digital distractions of all kinds. Each time you get distracted, it can take an average of 23 minutes to get back on track. Add in the not-so-encouraging statistic that we look at our phones 150 times a day, and it’s a wonder that we get anything done at all.

Happily, you’re more intelligent than a digital device, so you can outsmart your distractions. You just need to have a plan of what you’re going to do.

The…


Save your mornings with a plan you put together the night before

White coffee cup that says BEGIN on a wooden coffee table
White coffee cup that says BEGIN on a wooden coffee table
Photo by Danielle MacInnes for Upsplash

At some point in your life, I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase: “When you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Ben Franklin said something like this (as did Sir Winston Churchill).

Personally, I just like to say, “it’s good to have a plan.”

I’m not saying an intricate, complicated, set-in-stone plan that you have to follow to the T for it to succeed. Instead, it is a simple plan that gets you into action.

When you have this kind of plan, you can stay on track, ignore distractions, and be proactive with your time.

One kind of plan that…


You are the star of the movie

How Third-Person Visualization can improve your performance…of anything

Imagine if there was a tool you could immediately start using that would improve your ability to get things done and get them done better and more effectively. And what if this tool was scientifically-backed? You’d probably want to try it right away.

It’s called Third-Person Visualization. I know for some people, just saying the word visualization is a little “out there,” but trust me, that’s not the case here.

You’re probably familiar with the concept of First-Person visualization.

It’s the kind of visualization that you hear about athletes and entertainers using. This is when they visualize themselves running a…


Your emotional labels are causing procrastination

Photo by Yan Krukov for Pexels

One of the prime places where procrastination rears its head is when you want to get started on something. Often, the only reason you put off getting started is that you don’t feel like it. Maybe the project you need to work on feels boring, or too hard, or it’s confusing, or you’re just in a bad mood.

The good news is: you don’t have a lack of motivation or willpower. Rather, you have just given your task an emotional label, and it is preventing you from getting started.

Think about doing your taxes. No one is really that excited…


shrouded picture of boy with a tablet
shrouded picture of boy with a tablet
Photo by Juan Pablo Serrano Arenas from Pexels

The benefits of changing your perspective

Change to survive. Isn’t that one of the things humans are supposed to do?

To make changes as we go through life to be happier, make more money, enjoy our time, and, yes, become a better version of ourselves.

One of the joys (and I say that with all of the sarcasm that I can muster) that accompanies making said changes is the arrival of an annoying, uninvited guest, Imposter Syndrome.

Imposter Syndrome settles in like a judgmental relative, declaring if you try to change things, people will figure out that you are a fake and a fraud.

It repeatedly…

Ellen Goodwin

Productivity Consultant, TEDx Speaker, Podcast Co-host, Author of DONE: How To Work When No One Is Watching. Learn more at Ellen@EllenGoodwin.com

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