Richard Maun – stop

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Time Management Tip: Stop!

16 January 2011

You can put yourself first and do things differently.

You can put yourself first and do things differently.

Sometimes it’s hard to stop, but stopping is what’s needed.

I was in a TA supervision session recently and realised that I needed to stop some things that have been causing time management stress. By the way, supervision is a great way to learn new things and improve your performance. If you’re working as a coach, you’ll probably already be having some. If not; call me.

So what have I stopped? Here are three of the key ones:

1) I’ve stopped cutting my day into tiny chunks of time. I found that trying to work on all of my big projects at once was distracting. Instead, I now have my diary organised so that I have a case study writing day, a book writing day, a client and sales day and so on. I focus on one key theme per day and that makes me more productive.

2) I’ve stopped being an active member of a TA sub-committee. I’ve had to acknowledge that, for now at least, I need to focus my time on my work and cut out some of the time-consuming ‘nice to haves’. Putting myself first here was hard, as I like the people and the subject matter, but I have deadlines to meet and need to be practical.

3) I’ve stopped trying to do it all myself. It’s easy to become self reliant and assume that only I can do the work, whilst fretting that I don’t have the time to fit in everything. Does that sound familiar to you? I’ve started to actively involve Sara, my ILM Centre Manager, with more projects. She’s great, knows her stuff and brings energy and ideas to the party. We have the wonderfully useful LaunchPad profile for leadership and team development, which we’re now promoting, so it makes sense to share the load and increase the capacity for action.

If your diary is full and you’re fretting about things, if you’re anxious that work or life is spinning out of control, if you’re surrounded by half-finished projects and piles of paper, which seem to be taking over; then the message here is a clear and friendly one:


Take a step back. Munch a biscuit. Talk to a friend, or get some supervision….

….And decide what you need to stop doing, in order to start making headway again.

Oh, and if you want to stop guessing about how to make progress with your team, or your personal development, then have a go at LaunchPad. Airbus, the NHS and countless Cranfield post-grads have all used it to stop floundering in the dark and start to make progress.

Have fun with your stopping!

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