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Keep Your Head Above Water

Keep Your Head Above Water

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I wanted to share with you a conversation I recently had with Tony Edwards, editor of

Tony was feeling overwhelmed and stressed after a large event that took so much of his time that other tasks were neglected.  He was feeling like he couldn’t keep his head above water, so I shared with Tony the technique I teach my clients on how to see progress when they think they are just spinning their wheels.

Below is our conversation:

Tony: “Really, I feel like I’ve been trying to keep my head above water since before ADA and am only now starting to catch up and plan things.”

Jen: “How you feel is not always reality. We might feel as if we don’t have it together and yet we actually do. Focus more on what is getting done and not left to be done. It helps if you make yourself a Done List and put that in front of you. Write down ALLLLL the things you get done in a day and put that right in front of you. If you have a To-Do list, make that behind something so it’s not right in front of your face: like a notebook that you can close or an app that you have to open. It will really bring things into focus of what you are achieving and not let what you haven’t completed yet overshadow the success.”

Tony: “A Done List! Oh, that’s a good idea!”

Jen: “Absolutely…it will change your perspective on how you approach your day. You leave feeling energized because you know you’ve gotten so much accomplished. Instead of feeling defeated by what is left to be done tomorrow.” 

Tony: “Thanks. That does help. I also bought Ryan Holiday’s Daily Stoic journal, which is encouraging me to jot down things, not to-dos, in the morning and the evening, that discipline seems to help also.”

Jen: “For sure. Merely start your day with 3 intentions and if you get nothing else done but those 3 things feel great about your day.” 

Tony: “That’s a solid strategy — 3 things is not too many that it feels overwhelming.”

Jen: “Success shouldn’t be measured by how much we get done but simply by what we get done. If those things impact our people, business, clients, etc. it is a successful day.”

I hope that our conversation may shed some light on what you can do when you are struggling to keep your head above water.


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