What Has Happened to Our Time?

Where has our time gone?  We have:  cell phones, computers, email, web conferencing, cars, washers, dryers, vacuum cleaners, PDAs – hey, weren’t they all suppose to free up some time?

Have you ever wondered how people worked in offices before there were computers, cell phones, email, PDAs, etc.?  Think about it – at one time in history, office work consisted of pen and paper.  Paper was very expensive and ink came out of  an ink well onto a feather nib!  You can imagine it was likely a much quieter environment.  When an employee went home, there were no phones to reach them with nor emails.

Yet, today, with all the tools available, we are frantic!  Whenever I’m sitting in a waiting room or walking on the streets on a week day, I love to watch people.  Some people’s facial expressions are so tense I want to run up to them and say, “How’s your day going?  Can I help?”

Why is it that we are so stressed at work?

One theory, among many,  is that we “rushed” to buy the latest gadget and the latest software without asking ourselves first whether we needed it or not or whether the latest and greatest suited our business.  Everyone else was doing it – we couldn’t be left behind.

The rush to “keep up with the other businesses” left many with huge expenditures in time and money.  If everyone, before buying anything, had asked themselves, “How will this gadget improve the bottom line?”, there might have been a more rationale approach to buying the newest technology offered only to be tempted by something supposedly even better six months down the road!

Decision-makers need to be involved with the people within the Company and not so concerned how “they look” from the outside.  Whenever the latest is being sold to your company, create a group of 4 or 5 people from the company who will be the most affected by any proposed change.  So, if the change is new software for the assembly line, put together a group who work at the different stages of the assembly line.  Make them part of the decision-making process.  Yes, they may not want change and they may fear losing their jobs.  Be honest and open – talk about their fears – don’t hide anything. 

In every part of the operation, if decision makers had worked hand-in-hand with the people who would be most affected by the changes, changes would have been right and serve everyone.  How many times in offices did I see an accountant delegated to buy office software for secretaries to use?  How could an accountant ever possibly know what a secretary needs to do his or her job?  They can’t.  Or how many times have you seen elected officials make laws or policies which impacted people’s livelihood without ever contacting the people in the industry?  The results were disastrous.

When the latest and greatest comes out again,

First, ask yourself:   “Do we need it?  How will it help us?. 

Second: gather members of the group which will be affected and ask for their opinion and suggestions –  make them part of the decision. 

Third, ask yourself:  What will be the costs in time and money to implement it?  Can we afford it?”

And ask yourself how you “turn down the stress levels” in your company – there are always little things which can be done especially if you concentrate on  highly functioning, efficient and effective operations.

Lorraine Arams

Who are you Blaming? How Much Time is it Costing You?

I looked on Google images for some images to include on this post on blaming.  There were 8,970,000 images on blame!  I would say we all have something in common – don’t we?

We don’t even notice that we are playing the game most of the time because we learned it way back in childhood when we began to understand what words meant and how to associate words with whatever we wanted our expression to communicate.

Blame the government – blame the neighbour – blame your boss – blame your employees – blame your parents – blame your siblings – blame society –

And what are we doing when we are blaming?  Wasting time!  We don’t see it that way – after all, it’s someone else’s fault we’re in the pickle we’re in.

For instance:

  • we blame government.  Yet, voting turnout is an all time low.  Few people are involved politicially or will even send a letter to an elected official or organize to counter government action.
  • we’re unhappy with the money we make and yet we won’t look at what it would take to earn more money.  We won’t take additional courses unless our employer pays for it or we won’t talk to our boss to find out what we can do to improve our chances for a raise or we won’t even do the research on the internet.
  • a behavior which gets us into trouble regularly is our parents fault:  “That’s how I was raised”.  Yet, we have free will to change our behavior whenever we want.  But, it’s difficult to change, isn’t it?  Easier to stay the way we are and blame someone else.

As long as we have:

  • someone to blame
  • spend time justifying our plight
  • and repeat the “story”

we have no chance of effecting change and creating the results we want. 

It’s called abdication!  Abdicating our lives to external forces which we can or cannot  impact or to internal forces which we can change but choose blame as the easy route.  Let’s face it – it’s so much easier to lay blame on someone or something else rather than do the work to change what needs to be changed.

How much time do we waste every single day laying blame?  While we are finding someone or something to blame, are we working on solutions?  Are we accepting responsibility for our lives?  Of course not.  We’re making ourselves feel more and more helpless and powerless.  Can people who feel helpless and powerless effect change, achieve what they want, find solutions?  We know the answer.  Yes, there will always be obstacles and events which don’t turn out, but, at least we know we did our best – that’s all that really counts.  We took responsibility, took action, did our best and we own the results no matter what.

Choose – choose today – choose to stop the blaming game and start using the time you have to go after what you want, accepting there will be obstacles and the results might not be exactly what you expect.  Keep on keeping on!  If things turn out bad or you have a bad day, feel it, give yourself time to process it and move on.  It’s okay to accept responsibility for something which did not turn out as expected – we’re human and cannot possibly succeed at every single thing we do.  However, success or failure, we learn from both.  Be powerful – take the full hit – good or bad!  Learn – move on –

Blaming is costing you way too much time and too much of your energy!  Blame is costing way too much life!


Celebrate Every Day Your Accomplishments

Every single day, at the end of the day, celebrate your accomplishments that day!!! 

Some of you think this is silly.  Is it? 

You were given 24 hours – a gift – to do with it whatever you want – whatever!  In yours and my country that’s possible – if you can’t read this, likely these freedoms are curtailed. 

What did you do today which made you feel good – feel you had accomplished something worthwhile? 

  • was it helping a colleague solve a problem
  • was it helping your child to understand a math theory or formula
  • was it volunteering that  put a smile on someone’s face who was having a bad day
  • was it a report you got finished
  • was it an exam you passed
  • was it helping a stranger who fell on the street and needed medical attention
  • was it calling your parents and building a strong adult relationship with them
  • was it getting a monkey off your boss’s back
  • was it to get 3 major things done from your list of To Dos
  • was it earning money to assure that your family has a place to live, food and clothes
  • was it connecting with your friends
  • was it cleaning your environment and feeling the peace that comes with being able to find what you need when you need it

What positive thing did you do today which added quality to living?

I urge you to get a small writing pad or spiral bound booklet, have it beside your bed and every night before you go to bed, write down at least one positive accomplishment you had that day.  What will it do for you?

  1. Nothing helps you sleep like success!  Your mind, soul and body love positives.  Writing a positive or two or three or more gets the right chemicals working in your brain.
  2. You’ll become aware of time.  Every day will be come more meaningful to you.
  3. The next morning, you’ll wake up “ready to sing in the shower”.  You’ll be amazed how  that single action before you go to sleep will affect your mood the next day.

 It’s all true – try it – this is one addiction which has positive results!!

Lorraine Arams


Should You Use Email or the Telephone for Greater Efficiency

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Time for Everything – Learning to Let Go – Lesson from Olympics 2010

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