6 Ways I’m Closing Out 2019 and Preparing for 2020

The quiet time between Christmas and New Year has been a special time for me to bring closure to the previous year and intentionally prepare for the next.  I often find that my days are so full throughout the year that I lose myself in the grind and neglect to recognize how much I have accomplished and grown in a given year and what major events and memories have helped shape who I am.

This tradition started five years ago when I went through some painful events that, frankly, I found difficult to process, bring closure to, and pick myself up from. It was during this time that I borrowed a workbook my father had purchased from the Michael Hyatt Company on bringing year-end closure.  While initially I was skeptical that this would help, I found that I loved the process that Michael had outlined, the clarity and perspective his questions provided, the way I was able to see the good and lessons learned in the midst of pain, and ultimately the way I was able to tangibly see and track my own personal growth.

Over the years, I have refined my annual review process and have experimented with additional methodologies/questions that I have added to the core list that Michael outlined.  I’m always tweaking to adapt to my needs in a particular year, but here’s a look at how I’m currently closing out 2019:

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What it’s like to grow up in a GTD household

Eric Mack and Wendy Haddad at the GTD Summit

The Getting Things Done methodology has provided tremendous value to so many drowning professionals over the past several years, but have you ever wondered what it was like to grow up in a GTD household? I’ve had the privilege of being trained in the Getting Things Done (GTD) methodology since I was a little girl.

My family’s a little “Type A”, and as I grew up around the time GTD was being developed, my parents decided to run an experiment with their homeschooling family and tack on Productivity 101 as an extra “subject” in school (Thanks, Dad). I fell in and out of love with GTD as I grew up, but once I hit university, I was shocked to realized that the habits I was taking for granted were missing in many of my peers.

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5 Observations to Improve Discipline

“Discipline equals freedom” – Jocko Willink

That bold statement by Jocko Willink on the Tribe of Mentors podcast resonated deeply with me and sent me on what is becoming a year-long journey to understand the meaning of discipline and better apply those principles in all areas of my life (not just productivity). Inspired by Gretchen Rubin’s podcast, Happier I set “Discipline” as my one-word theme of the year.

Throughout the past six months, I’ve been struck by five observations about discipline:

Discipline needs a positive reward

Discipline is inherently hard.  It’s the act of denying ourselves something now for future benefit.  Charles Duhigg shares that every habit has a reward that reinforces that habit in our brains. We can effectively change our habits and be more disciplined by being intentional with how we use those rewards.  My favorite example of this is the jar of chocolates Duhigg has on his desk that he can only eat from once he’s finished a weekly review.

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5 Ingredients to Maximize Your Rest

Ove-Kennith Nilson, GTD Summit

Have you ever thought through your philosophy of rest?  Is rest something to be achieved after the work is done or equally as important as the work itself?  Are you intentional about deciding how to rest? These are some of the thoughts that have been swirling through my head in the aftermath of the GTD Summit.  I mentioned in a previous post that one of the quotes that hit me hard during the Summit was:

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Reflections on the 2019 GTD Summit

GTD for the family panel discussion with Eric Mack, Wendy Haddad, Mike Williams, and David Allen

Last week I had the incredible privilege of attending and participating on a panel at the 2019 GTD (Getting Things Done) Summit in Amsterdam.  This was a special opportunity for me as I have grown up with the GTD methodology my whole life and was able to participate on a panel in the first GTD Summit in San Francisco ten years prior. David and Kathryn Allen are dear friends of my family and it was wonderful to see them again and hear how the productivity techniques they developed have helped so many people. 

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