How To Get Stuff Done, Fast

Time to read: less than one minute because you have s*$% to do!

Imperfection at its finest.

Imperfection at its finest.

Hello rebels!

To say that the past couple of weeks have been slammed would be an understatement. See if any of this sounds familiar to you...

  • My children are off for the summer. Bye-bye routine. Hello daily unpredictability and chaos.
  • I have daily client calls and meetings and have to take some of them from my bedroom because of see #1.
  • We're taking a trip next week so everything has gotten crammed into this week.
  • My BFF and I are launching a project for y'all in August and spent yesterday shooting videos.
  • A volunteer job requires hours of emails and organizing.
  • There's always a dose of interpersonal drama that sucks time and energy when you work with other people.
  • Then there's just regular life: showering, walking the dog, making food, cleaning.

Can you relate?

In weeks like this, the name of the game is "get s#*$ done."

So, how do you get your s*@# done with quality, efficiency and speed?

Keep this one simple moto in mind:

Completion over perfection.

In shooting the videos, Anne and I stumbled over our words sometimes. Did we shoot each video 10 times to get it perfect? NO! We declared our stumbling charming and human and moved to the next video.

I usually have this newsletter written by Tuesday afternoon. Here it is, Thursday morning, and I'm slamming it out before my children wake up. Am I beating myself up for not making my internal deadline or considering letting it go this once? NO. I woke up, chose a topic, and started writing.

Be thoughtful. Do good work. Meet your deadlines (or communicate well if you won't). Don't spend hours dotting every "i" and crossing every "t." Your 80% is good enough. Otherwise, perfection will make you insane. We're not fans of insanity here at the Corporate Rebel.

Get 'er done and move on.

I hope this helps.

Christina

P.S. Do you know someone who gets stuck in perfection and doesn't complete stuff efficiently, or at all? Share this article with them and they can sign up to join us here.

 

The Biggest Lie You've Been Told

Time to read: Less than one minute

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Dear Rebels,

When you were young, did you dream of your future? Maybe a job that earned a good living. A family. Time to pursue your passions and interests. Travel. Then, once you got that job, you poured yourself into it with gusto (or not). You played volleyball after work. You took painting classes or sang in a choir. You slept in on weekends and had dinner regularly with friends.

Then maybe you committed to a partner. Perhaps you built a family. You got promoted or changed jobs or went back to school. Your parents got older. Maybe you bought a house. Life got more complex and even though it happened over years, it seems like overnight you became exhausted, overwhelmed, and focused on life as a checklist of transactions. You used to feel like you had it all together and now balls are dropping, friends are a distant memory, exercise was first to go, and the "few tips" you've tried to regain control lasted all of a minute before everything snapped back to the relentless new "normal."

Does some version of this sound familiar?

I grew up in the 1980s when young people were fed the biggest lie of all time.

The lie?

You can have it all.

It's total crap.

Also total crap is the feeling that there is something wrong with you if you can't manage it all.

A wise mentor once said to me, "You can have anything. You just can't have everything."

Cue one of my favorite themes: Choices.

You get to choose your priorities. When you're trying to stuff 15 pounds of life into a 5 pound bag, you get to choose what to let go, what is non-negotiable, what can wait, and what you'll prioritize.

Stop beating yourself up for not being able to manage it all. No one can. It's a lie.

With rebel love,

Christina

P.S. Know someone who needs to let go of the lie? Send them here to find relief.

 
 

How to Get Out of Exhaustion and Overwhelm

Time to read: Less than one minute and fifteen seconds

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Hello Rebels,

It's 6:00 am. Your feet are barely on the floor, and you're already behind. You stayed up after your children's bedtime to empty your stuffed inbox and get ahead on that presentation you couldn't finish during your back-to-back day. Then there is summer scheduling, end of school activities, and picking up the slack while your colleagues take spring vacation. Remember exercise? Ha!

You're exhausted before you've started, and although some days are more packed than others, they all mush together in one long string of busy-ness.

Feel familiar?

You think that if you find the right productivity strategy, you'll be able to fix this. You get creative with your company's insistence that you "do more with less." You only check email once or twice a day. You focus on the three most important things you need to get done. These strategies work to some extent, and nothing seems to change.

I love productivity tips as much as the next busy person. And, organizing your desk differently or making prioritized lists is only going to get you so far.

What will actually get you out of exhaustion and overwhelm, is a change in you.

To help you experiment with this idea, I turned to a process I use in my own life. I have this amazing set of cards full of empowering choices and beliefs. I pull one every day to anchor how I will be with whatever is happening that day.

Today, I pulled three cards for you. (See the photo above.) Your three cards are:

Willingness: This is one of my favorites. You have to be willing to do things differently today. To slow down. To stop worrying. To get into action. Even when things suck, we're often not actually willing to change it.

I am creative: Where can you lean into your wild creativity to bring more joy, new solutions, or less stress to your work?

I choose trust: I pull a card everyday, and I seriously trust 4 out of 5 times. Seems like this one might be kind of important. Where do you not trust yourself? Or others? Where can you lean into more trust to bring ease to your work and relationships?

Pick one of these cards and use it to navigate your day. Then hit reply to this email and tell me what happens.

I always love to hear from you.

With rebel love,

Christina

P.S. Please share these cards with a friend or colleague who needs a little more trust, creativity or willingness. They can join our merry band of rebels here.

 

Are You Distracted?

Time to read: Part 1 of a 2-part series on email mastery. Less than one minute to read so you don't get distracted!

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Today is newsletter day, meaning I set a goal to write 3 newsletters. Here is what I have accomplished thus far: walked the dog, marinated chicken, went to yoga, ate lunch, unloaded the dishwasher, folded laundry, scooped litter boxes, and checked email, like 6 or 7 times. When you work from home, the danger is distraction.

And, if you work in an office, the danger is distraction! Tea, anyone?!

Email is a special form of distraction. When you chat in the hall with your friends or I clean out the garage, we know we are not working. (I mean, yes, you can make a case that you are building relationships and still getting things done, and it's not writing a newsletter or attending to that big deadline you have at the end of the week.)

Email, on the other hand, has the illusion of working. If you spend an hour replying to requests and setting up meetings and cleaning out the old inbox, it feels like working. Sometimes, cleaning out your inbox is a worthy activity, but it is not moving you forward on the creative, thoughtful, innovative projects and ideas that will advance your career. "He did a great job crafting emails this year" or "She really kept her inbox in check" is not going to get you promoted.

So, what to do?

  1. Close your email and focus on the innovative and creative projects that need your full attention, even if only for 25 minutes.
  2. Check email once or twice a day at designated times. (I have never been successful at this one. You'll learn more next week in Part 2 of Email Mastery).
  3. Only use email for quick responses. For longer, more nuanced situations, and certainly in conflict, pick up the phone.

Get off your email. You have creative things to do!

With rebel love,

Christina

P.S. Please forward this newsletter to your friends. They want to be happier at work, too. They can join here.

It's the quitting season!

Estimated read time: 1:17.09 minutes.

Quit optional activities you don't enjoy. My daughter hated T- ball.

Quit optional activities you don't enjoy. My daughter hated T- ball.

There's a lot going on right now. Holiday prep. Election updates. Dark days. Year-end deliverables. Here in the North, we're finally into cold weather. Are you feeling the intensity?

With everything that's happening in your life, the US and the world right now, I want to provide you with relief, permission to rest, and a chance to slow down. I want to help you find some ease.

One simple path to more ease is Be A Quitter.

I can hear some of you saying, "Nope. That's impossible. I can can't shirk my responsibilities." We're taught that being a quitter is Bad with a capital B.

Quitting is good. Sometimes, you must.

You are a kind and generous person. You likely say yes to more things than you can reasonably handle. Quitting is one path to balance. (So is saying no but that's a conversation for a different day.)

Tony Robbins says that quitting in order to honor your values is vital. (And if Tony Robbins says it, it must be true.)

Try these ideas on for size:

  • Promised you'd attend a baby shower, and now you feel like you need a quiet evening at home? Send a Babies R Us gift card with a kind note and quit! Honor your value of quiet.
  • Volunteered to organize an event and realize you've said yes to one to many things? Send an email and quit! Honor your value of free time.
  • Agreed to have lunch with a friend from college who you don't like much anymore? Decline, make a note not to schedule this lunch again, and quit! Honor your value of authentic relationships.

When you are evaluating how you spend your day, consider if an activity brings you joy - nor not. Choose to do the things that bring you joy. And offer a polite, accountable, "I quit."

It's a good practice. And the discomfort of quitting will ultimately teach you where you need to say no to honor your values.

I hope this brings you some ease and simplicity.

Christina

P.S. If you know someone who would like to receive this newsletter, they can sign-up for The Corporate Rebel Video Podcast and Newsletter HERE.

Speeding toward the holidays? Stay on track with these productivity tips.

Estimated read time: 1:02.81 minutes

It sounds weird. And seriously, this tomato-inspired strategy will help you get more done starting TODAY.

It sounds weird. And seriously, this tomato-inspired strategy will help you get more done starting TODAY.

In the late fall, the pace of life and work speeds up. This year, there is much happening on the national and international stage. It can be exhausting. Things accelerate - annual reviews, holiday parties, travel, year-end analyses, family visits, and project deadlines. Does it feel like this in your world?

In response to the pace of the wider world, we are keeping things simple here at Corporate Rebel HQ.

I'll spend the next few weeks teaching you techniques for efficiency and productivity so you can focus, do excellent work, breathe, and have more time for fun and festivities.

Here's the first one, inspired by a process called Pomodoro. (Yes, the Italian word for tomato.) This super productivity strategy was developed by Francesco Cirillo who was inspired by his tomato-shaped kitchen timer.

I use a modified version of Francesco's process which you can implement immediately to make your work more productive. Here's how it works:

  1. Text or instant message a friend or colleague who will be your virtual pomodoro partner. (You can also do this process alone.)
  2. Tell your friend exactly what you are going to work on for the next 25 minutes. Choose one thing.
  3. Shut off your email, FB, and phone ringer so you can focus.
  4. Set a timer for 25 minutes.
  5. When you're both ready, text Go! and start the timer.
  6. Focus for the next 25 minutes.
  7. When the timer goes off, account your progress and/or completion to your colleague. Celebrate!
  8. Take a 5 minute break - grab coffee, step outside, throw in a load of laundry, listen to music.

Rinse and repeat as many times as you like.

I used this process to write this newsletter and am now going to take a break to make breakfast for my kids before school.

Let me know how this process works for you!

I hope this helps.

Warmly,

Christina

P.S. If you know someone who would like to receive this newsletter, they can sign-up for The Corporate Rebel Video Podcast and Newsletter HERE.