Tag Archive | work

Hectic days

I do not know how and why I have over committed at work. It has been crazy the past few weeks. I have been working week nights as well as weekends. I have so many things that are pressing that needs to be addressed but I decide to just focus on work and get done with it. It is January 26th already, wonder how time flew by this fast.  I crave for that relaxed vacation without the thought of hosting anyone, daily chores, meeting friends or family or attending any events and just have that time to take a step back and give my body and mind much needed rest from all the rat race. Is that a reality? Life is what we make out of it – isn’t? But, that seems like a distant future for me at the moment.

Time and again, I end up focusing on things that does not let me progress in the direction I want to. At the same time, life happens. Time management is an art that can be acquired with due diligence. My brain wanders a lot and has the smallest attention span possible. It loses the interest and obviously momentum.  The best example is – when you are in meeting rooms, I get lost in my own world and suddenly someone calling my name brings me back to my senses, and by the time I respond, the question that was targeted towards me has never reached my brain in the first place.  Does it happen to you?

People at my work leave around 4, well, they come in at 7, and it is fair that they leave at that time. On the other hand, I have been over working from past few days and I am so tempted to leave early and I have to swallow that temptation and divert my attention to get the work done.  I guess today, I will make that exception – come what may, I will get that much needed rest this evening. Rest can be handled tomorrow. Well, I am not a life-saving doctor and my work is not a critically-ill patient ;). I am tired and I need some rest to be productive tomorrow.

How do you deal with tight deadlines and hectic work schedules?

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Distractions at work..

These days, I seem to be productive if I come in to work during early mornings or late evenings. When I say early – it is between 7 to 8 am or evenings post 5 pm until 8 pm. With the resource crunch, the additional work responsibilities do add up.  So where does my time go in between? Meetings partially, catching up with regular work. But, lately, with some resources gone from my team, their acquaintances come to chat with me. I find it very hard to turn them down. I feel very much obligated to spare few minutes to chat with them.  The longer you are with the firm, the more people you tend to work with and conversations does extend beyond just work.

Not only that, I have been actively participating in organization events on and off, which led me to work with people whom I would never have met. Some more people under my wing to speak with. I mostly prefer short conversations and try to move on, by consciously taking it slow. I am struggling with balancing of my social chatter at work and getting my work done. I tend to sway giving priority to being obligated to speak to random-but-known-people versus getting my work done. Ergo, I end up either coming early or staying late to finish my work. Clearly, this is not an optimal approach for healthy work-life balance.

I am not a people’s person by any means, these acquaintances and some people whom I closely work with on a regular basis takes away lot of my time. I cannot imagine having to find a time slot in meeting any of my work colleagues outside the work with my insane number of to-do activities. The one thing that has helped me is to use the head phones. They are my true savior.  Those indicate I am seriously working on something.

Having said and done, I think, I look for excuses than to get my work done. Clearly, they are excuses and I need to figure a solution for my recently acquired problem– don’t you think so?

So, how do you deal with distractions at work? What measures do you take to prioritize your work and not end up working like me after hours and in weekends? What motivates you to stay focused?

Music

After posting  How to be energetic? I really got some great suggestions, which I promptly followed them at work as well as at home. The music indeed is wonder, I never enjoyed plugging head phones into my ears for as long as I remember. Some impressions stay longer than required. I read some where that listening to music produces quite an amount of germs, and I thought that was dirtiest, ergo I avoided as much as possible, and did not share my ear plugs nor borrowed from anyone else. The sad fact is that I use mobile phone and surely, it could be the dirtiest one amongst others.  How do we even clean it? how to sanitize it? These smart phones are addictive.

I digress, the music, it has been really helping me get over with my mundane tasks like cleaning home & dishes, cooking and other chores around. At work, it has been a hit, I took my comfortable head phones and have been listening to music on repeat, so far, I have been doing great with mundane things that are not important but has to be finished sooner than later at work. Music surely is therapeutic. It is, as long as I do not pay attention to lyrics, if I do pay attention, it is very distracting. I can easily tune out the background noise while I focus. The only beneficial factor with headphones at work has been – no-distractions-from-colleagues-chatter. They think I am seriously working on something and do not initiate fun chatter.

Dear readers, do you listen to music? Why do you listen?

What motivates us to go to work every day and stay sane?

I have long been searching for this answer. The questions I tried to ask myself – whether I love my job, Love is a such a strong word, I would use “Like” over love, sure I do, for it gives me freedom to explore many other options and exposes me to interesting people, competitive enough to get ahead if I were to move onto something else, over all, the firm that I work for believes in a mission that I feel connected. But, there are days, where I find myself de-motivated, un- interested and I find myself killing time doing nothing and want to get back home as soon as I can and my restlessness continues through day with the thought “I did not accomplish much at work, ergo, not much progress at home too” and there are days where I am super productive at work, at home and at other works resulting in a good night sleep.

Today, is such a day of de-motivation, you may call it Monday Blues,  I came across this page  in google search while browsing for a quick solution to motivate myself instantly.  I will summarize the whole article in few points here.

  1. The feeling that you are making some progress at work and in life. The idea is to break down the bigger goal and try and achieve it (And this idea is exactly same as to what I have been trying to implement for the longest time possible, was able to do some times, but forego most of the times). Apparently, this is one of the reasons to feel motivated as well.
  2. 3 Factors that lead to better performance and personal satisfaction – Autonomy (our desire to direct our own lives), Mastery (our urge to get better at stuff), Purpose (The feeling and intention that we can make a difference in the world).
  3. Exercise & eating healthy – any kind of physical exercise everyday will produce mood-enhancing chemicals and endorphin’s that elevate your mood by lowering the stress. Of course, healthy food always makes you feel good.
  4. Reflecting on your thoughts and tracking down the progress you make each day.
  5. Most importantly, developing the art of positive thinking. Most of the times, the energy is drained by thinking negatively about something or someone. It is just easier and healthier for our brains and bodies to be positive.

The problem of implementing these steps and sticking to it until it becomes a habit is a challenging task. However, there is no harm in getting started and having a goal to do it is far better than being stuck and lacking direction. After all, the first step is very important to begin the journey.

So, dear readers what motivates you to what you do every day? I would be interested in knowing as to how you keep yourself going out and about life, work and all other areas despite hardships? How do you deal with mundane work over and over, be it professionally or personally?

Distractions – everywhere

I woke up very early this morning hoping to get my work done and be free of any mental taxing this weekend.

Oh I have had plans to go visit a friend this weekend.

But…

I ended up using every minute of my  precious time  browsing blogs, watching you tube videos, reading some random articles, browsing through unknown profiles on facebook.. you know your friend clicked like on some of their family or friends and I end up navigating up there.

At the end of the day – my day goes “Useless” without any real productive work.. and I end up slacking until deadline approaches.. there I go.. start panicking, getting tensed and use up my “Supposed to be fun-filled weekend” to work on the stuff that I have successfully procrastinated.

This repeats constantly on and off until unless I have some serious travelling lined up.  This entry should serve me as the beginning to treat my time as valuable and I should be relieved at the end of the day.  The day I am the most productive, be it at work or returning any emails, finishing any paper work or staying in touch with my friends and family..  is the day I sleep happily.

How does it work for you all? I am seriously on my way to change the way I deal with my time. I want to do more meaningful and be very productive at work and home.  Most importantly I must learn to avoid all the distractions that consume my time.

Habit of Making to-do lists

..true isn’t?
src: everydaypeoplecartoons.com

Do you make any daily or weekly to-do lists?

The day when I make them, most of it has been accomplished. And I rarely do it.. !

Laziness is a habit, the more you nurture it the more you get comfortable with.

I am trying to do that-once-in-while habit of making lists to including in my daily routine. And what a better time to start than now!

you might question of what the advantages are?

1. It helps you prioritize your work

2. Creates an order in personal and professional life

3. Reduces stress, and saves you from remembering things to do and you’ve got it listed all out there.

4. More importantly, you will be accountable

And doing this everyday will get you somewhere in life and at work – it’s like a direction towards your short and long term goals. It also gives you some sense of achievement on per day basis.

Please make sure that you have this to-do list written on paper or a small diary that you carry around everyday and title it as DO-IT vs TO-DO! .. just like the image below

What are you waiting for?
Src: http://www.997thepoint.com

Are you with me? what do you think of making and executing TO-DO lists?

Do you usually do it?

Would love to hear from you about how it helps you in day-to-day routine.

Happy Monday!

This made my day – Share the Love

I was pleasantly surprised to see a greeting card at my desk this morning adored with nice words and chocolates.

As part of valentines week, our organisation has started “Share the Love” concept for this entire week. This is very thoughtful of my colleague to express her feelings towards me and all other people whom she works with. Small things like these makes life worth living. It feels great this instant!

Can I be this generous in expressing my love or feelings towards others? I usually hold back.. but this gesture by my colleague made me think.. what a nice Idea and how it can make a person feel better just making that extra effort to convey your feelings toward them.

It felt heart warming and totally made my day.  Aaah.. this is what I have been speaking about.

Picture speaks more than words.. isn’t?

Share the Love

Share the Love

What are your thoughts on this? do you think it is necessary to express what you feel towards people whom you interact with on a regular basis, be it friends, colleagues, or family?  instead of being implicit?

Inspiration …

Image src: rugusavay.com

I woke up exhausted this morning and shoot out an email to my boss stating I would be coming in late to work.

I am exhausted, stressed out beyond some reason that I know the problem and at this moment I cannot in any possible way hope to find a solution.. time is the greatest gift. Since, I could not inspire myself on my own..I looked for external source of inspiration. 

Here are couple of quotes that I liked so far by Swami Vivekananda

“Talk to yourself once in a day…otherwise you may miss meeting an excellent person in this world”

 “Anything that makes weak – physically, intellectually and spiritually, reject it as poison.” 

Speaking to self is something I avoid so much, it is just hard for me to do that and I hope to do it some day soon. Discipline is something I have been lacking regularly.. and I should be working on it.

With this rejuvenated energy, I will have an amazing time at work and be back with great post this evening about musings from my India trip.

Eat the frog first

I hate to do the paperwork said a friend of mine.
I said : Me too.
Another friend said – I hate to do house hold chores.
I said : Me too
One another friend said – I have so much pending work in office
And by now you can guess what my possible response could be.

Do you associate yourself being in this situation as well? Welcome to the league!

True True(src: google images)

True True
(src: google images)

Yes, it is quite a human nature to procrastinate. And we tend to procrastinate those menial time consuming but important work. We get to the stage where we have so much work piled up, less time, more stress and sense of urgency sets in to finish them as deadline approaches. During this time, some other important task that needs your immediate attention comes, things go wrong undeniably and we think “all bad things happen at same time”, an epitome of Murphy’s law. We start blaming ourselves or others who are close to you for our inability to finish the work on time. If you connect those dots, one thing leads to another and another to some other and so on until we get to a stage were we tend to give up on things. Chain of reactions!

I have been in those situations numerous times. And every time, I warn myself of such situations and try to finish the work no matter how boring that sounds. As they say “Practice makes man perfect”, I am improving myself and yet still lag behind some times (read as Most of the times). Having time limit per day/week on such items will take us long way in personal as well as in professional life. It reminds me of the story “Eat the Frog first”, the story goes on like this, having not paying attention to those menials tasks eventually become obstacles going forward. People consider frog as having some disgusting taste and eating that ahead will make you look forward for better things [the condition is that frog is a mandatory requirement in diet]. Although, you hate eating the frog (obstacle), it is better to get this out of your way to move forward in life.

For instance, I had to file my taxes last year; I have waited until last minute, yes until a day before last day of filing for taxes. That is when I discovered that living in NYC is one supposed to pay city tax, and my employer did not cut those taxes from my paycheck and I ended up paying city tax from my pocket and had to arrange for funds instantly. It was challenging. It is always a good idea to get those tasks out of your way as soon as possible, especially when you know they are absolutely unavoidable.

How do you get away with such situations?

Honest Confessions

How many times have you failed to regularly write an entry in your blog?

I fail at it from time to time. Just last week, we celebrated a festival on a large scale. I wrote about the festival reminiscing childhood memories with appropriate pictures to be posted in this blog, alas lost the content while I got busy with some other stuff. I gave up re-writing about it.

Do you keep up with promises?

As for me, the success rate is far less than I want it to be. From last two posts where I promised that I would post the “Giant Christmas tree from NYC” and experiments of baby photo-shoot are left in the air as well. It is still on my to-do list.

Besides blog entry promises, I have mentioned about resolutions in my previous post where they can be renewed every year. In fact, I renew them every single day and decide to start tomorrow. Apparently, tomorrow never comes for me.

Another one where I mentioned about how coffee is bad for health, I gave up for few days but a natural instinct when you are on strict deadlines and if your stress levels are high, obvious option is to consume caffeine.

Do you take up new initiatives?

I am not sure if any one out there can empathize with me. Let’s talk about my new activities (for instance, knitting , learning guitar and public speaking and many other you can find on about me page) that I keep taking up every now and then, I am not as dedicated as I want to be. Trying new is exciting but sticking to them until you get through is the most difficult part.

Have you ever heard of a saying “Jack of all trades, master of none”, it righteously applies to me but some day I want to be categorized as “Jack of all trades, master of at least one” instead. Indeed, that is how it works in this modern era. It applies at your work location as well which I strongly believe in.

Coming back to the commitment of writing one blog entry a week is the biggest challenge that I want to take it up. Writing an entry, no matter how good, worse or mediocre it sounds.. it sure requires mind to be at peace and have thoughts flowing in with ease. I want to add bit of humor to my writings, another initiative on-the-go.

And these habits sure reflect in life and at work. I can audaciously say that I am very good at procrastination.

Question for you all- How committed are you with what you take up?