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A Life Lesson About Loose Ends

A couple of weeks ago I had one of those lightbulb moments that simultaneously makes you feel better (“aha! Now I know what I need to do!) and worse (“for goodness’ sake, how did I not realise that before?”).

I was having a really grumpy kind of a week. You know the sort? Everything feels like an effort. Energy is low. Irritation rises to the surface more readily than usual. I was feeling decidedly unsettled and I wasn’t sure why. Actually, I chose not to even try to figure out why.

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Louise MillerComment
To walk or not to walk? That is the question.

I almost didn’t write this blog. I thought it might be confusing; that I’m contradicting the advice I shared in my last post. But I wrote it anyway, because I know it’s important.

Last time I said that if you’re feeling stuck, you should get up and walk away.

I stand by that advice, and know that it works. If you’re eager and motivated to get a particular thing done but you’re just not in the right headspace or your energy is off, walking away can help.

But it’s not ALWAYS the right thing to do.

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Louise MillerComment
Feeling stuck?

What do you do when you’re feeling stuck with the thing you’re working on?

When you need to do something important but are getting nowhere.

Let’s say, for instance, that Mildred sits down to write a blog post but is feeling uninspired. She doesn’t know what to write. Has no ideas at all. The words won’t come.

What should she do?

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Louise MillerComment
Why there is such a thing as too much fun!

When we run a business doing what we love, it can be very easy to just keep working. To spend all day and all evening on our laptops because we’re having such a good time writing, connecting with people online, tinkering with tech or playing with new designs in Canva (guilty as charged).

But just because it’s fun, doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to keep going ad infinitum.

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Louise Miller Comments
What to do when you don't know where to start

“I have so much to do, I just don’t know where to start!”

Sound familiar?

It’s common to feel that way when you’re drowning under the weight of your to-do list.

And when looking at your list makes your brain hurt because everything is important and needed to happen yesterday, it’s easy to slide into analysis paralysis.

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Louise MillerComment
Do you have a love-hate relationship with Facebook?

It’s no secret that social media can be exceedingly bothersome when it comes to getting stuff done.

So you may be surprised that today I’d like to acknowledge the positive role those platforms can play in our lives, why there’s no shame in wanting to engage with them and how, if we use them well, they can enhance our day-to-day experience rather than hinder it.

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Louise MillerComment
Being productive is just like learning to drive!

Last year I had the privilege of working with a very smart mentoring client who had incredible gifts to offer the world but was getting in her own way because she couldn’t get herself organised.

During our very first conversation, she said matter-of-factly that she had never been taught how to be productive. She didn’t see her disorganised way of working as a failing or a character flaw, she’d just never been shown a different way.

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Louise MillerComment
What about the small things?

Take a look at your to-do list.

How many small things have been lurking on there for what feels like forever?

By ‘small things’, I mean tasks that would take less than fifteen minutes.

You know the small tasks I mean, right? The ones you just never seem to get around to but that you really can’t ditch.

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Louise MillerComment
Is this your productivity nemesis?

Have you ever noticed how many times you reach for your phone during the day? Do you think you could put a number on it if you had to hazard a guess?

No?

If you're anything like me, and many, many other people, you probably pick up your phone without even realising you're doing it. It's like some weird muscle memory thing. It's become habitual.

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Why your attention is like a bag of chips!

Setting an intention can be incredibly powerful. Whether big like a goal for your business, or small like the intention I set when I sat down to write this email, having an intention is jolly useful when it comes to getting things done.

Our intentions help us to stay focused on what's important, to stay in our own lane and to stay motivated when things feel tough.

So why is it that even when we have clear goals for our business, even when we can see where we're heading and feel excited about getting there, we still often find ourselves frittering our days away?

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Louise MillerComment
When overwhelm and anxiety strike!

One month ago I tried a little experiment. I wanted to see what would happen if I spent one week with no TV, no radio, no podcasts, no internet, no phone and no reading after 5.30pm.

My hope was that I'd have loads of great ideas, be inspired to write, draw and make music, get outside, exercise, play games and bask in a slower, richer end to each day.

I was completely and utterly unprepared for what actually happened.

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Time to start thinking differently?

A couple of days ago a quote caught my eye:

"Slow living is this weird duality of being prepared, organised, having systems in place, knowing what's coming and managing expectations, and being flexible and fluid and understanding that life happens."

Replace “slow living” with “productivity”, and Brooke has expressed my philosophy way better than I ever could.

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The importance of taking it one day at a time

Many moons ago, when working in a very busy, pressured job, I used to sit down on a Monday and plan out what I intended to get done every day that week. 

I honestly believed that seeing precisely when things would get done gave me control over both my time and my to-do list. 

There were just two problems with that…

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Louise MillerComment