Attitudes to Work Life Balance

When we look at our capabilities and attitudes to the work life balance dilemma, I find that we drop into one of the following categories.

The Overwhelmed Juggler

The Overwhelmed Juggler is someone who faces significant difficulties in balancing work and personal life due to low integration and poor boundary management. This individual constantly feels overwhelmed by the demands from both domains, leading to frequent stress and burnout. Work often intrudes into personal time and vice versa, making it challenging to manage responsibilities effectively. The Overwhelmed Juggler struggles with time management and feels guilty for not meeting expectations in either area, perpetuating a cycle of stress and self-criticism.

The Boundless Blender

The Boundless Blender excels at integrating work and personal life, blending tasks from both domains seamlessly. However, this high level of integration is marred by poor boundary management, resulting in a lack of clear distinctions between work and personal time. The Boundless Blender is highly productive and flexible, but this often leads to burnout and strained relationships as work frequently intrudes into personal life. Despite their efficiency, the inability to set firm boundaries can lead to high stress levels and a diminished sense of well-being.

The Rigid Compartmentalizer

The Rigid Compartmentalizer is adept at maintaining clear and strong boundaries between work and personal life but struggles with integrating the two. This person keeps work and personal tasks strictly separate, often missing out on opportunities for synergy and flexibility. Their rigid approach can lead to inefficiencies and increased stress when unexpected events occur, as they find it challenging to adapt and blend responsibilities. Despite their clear boundaries, the lack of integration can result in a less harmonious and more stressful life.

The Balanced Integrator

The Balanced Integrator excels at both integrating work and personal life and maintaining strong boundaries between the two. This individual blends responsibilities from both domains effectively, maximising productivity while ensuring work does not intrude on personal time and vice versa. They achieve high levels of efficiency and well-being by leveraging synergies and maintaining clear, strong boundaries. The Balanced Integrator manages stress well and maintains positive relationships due to their clear communication and respect for boundaries, enjoying a harmonious and fulfilling life.

This post was originally published on this site

A simple goal setting tool that could change your week

A new goal setting tool to encourage you to break down those tricky objectives and achieve success.

If you would like to download a ready made template and give this a go yourself – check out here

In summary, this session explored.

  1. The Importance of Planning: The speaker underlines the critical role of having a plan for the week to ensure tasks and goals are achieved. This approach is grounded in the belief that scheduling and planning increase the likelihood of task completion.
  2. Simple Tools for Effective Planning: A practical method is introduced using readily available items: a sheet of A4 paper and pens. This approach demonstrates that effective planning does not require sophisticated tools.
  3. Breaking Down Goals into Daily Tasks: The strategy involves identifying main goals for the week and breaking them down into daily tasks. This helps in maintaining focus and ensuring steady progress towards the week’s objectives.
  4. Manageable Goal Setting: By focusing on a manageable number of main goals (three in the example given), the speaker suggests that this helps prevent being overwhelmed and increases the chances of achievement.
  5. Daily and Weekly Progress Tracking: The method encourages tracking progress on a daily basis against weekly goals, using the example of increasing social media followers to illustrate how to set and measure progress towards a specific target.
  6. Themed Content for Engagement: The speaker shares a personal strategy for engaging audiences on social media, suggesting different themes for content on different days of the week to keep the audience engaged and interested.
  7. Visual Reminders for Task Completion: The use of Post-it notes as visual reminders for daily tasks is recommended, providing a satisfying way to acknowledge task completion by removing the note.
  8. The Concept of the “Seven-Minute Coach”: The session introduces the “seven-minute coach” as a brand focused on starting the day with a short, focused activity to enhance focus and success.
  9. Encouragement to Participate in Live Sessions: A call to action encourages viewers to engage in live sessions on platforms like LinkedIn, demonstrating the session’s purpose as not only educational but also motivational.

Enjoy the short clip that runs about 8min30 at normal speed.

This post was originally published on this site

The Powerful ‘Don’t Do’ List – the 7 Step Model.

The Powerful ‘Don’t Do’ List – the 7 Step Model.

I find that most productivity hints and tips suggest good practices that we should be doing. Reversing this, perhaps there are some things that we should absolutely not be doing and this has lead to creating The Don’t Do model.

Simply, this is about identifying things that we do as a part of a normal day that adds no or little value to what we are trying to achieve. Perhaps it is a ‘feel good’ to get many likes on your LinkedIn, or other social posts but are they adding any real value that you trade with your time. In a world brimming with distractions and demands, mastering the art of saying ‘No‘ to certain tasks can be transformative and increase your personal time or space.

This seven step process is designed to be followed sequentially.

The Powerful 'Don't Do' List - the 7 Step Model.

Step 1: Self-Reflection

Before diving into the worksheet, it’s crucial to set your intentions. This initial phase is about grounding yourself in your productivity goals and aligning them with the broader objectives of your personal and professional life.

Self-reflection is the cornerstone of personal development. This step is about observing your daily activities without judgment to gain awareness of where your time is currently being spent. It’s a discovery phase where patterns of behaviour are noted, providing a baseline for change.

Ask yourself

  • What are my main goals for improving productivity?
  • Which areas of my life/work do I feel need more focus?

Step 2: Identification of Time-Wasters

With a week’s worth of observations at hand, you will identify the recurring activities that contribute least to your goals. This step is about recognizing the habits that are holding you back so that you can begin to formulate a plan to change them.

You may find it useful to think about

  • What activities today made me feel unproductive?
  • Were there any moments when I felt my time could have been better spent?

Step 3: Categorisation

Categorisation helps to organize your identified time-wasters into groups. This step is essential for understanding the nature of your unproductive activities, which can then be addressed with more targeted strategies.

To help think about categories of activity, think about

  • What categories do these activities fall into (e.g., distractions, low-value tasks)?
  • How do these categories align with my personal and professional priorities?

Step 4: Prioritisation

Not all unproductive activities are created equal. This step involves prioritising which habits to tackle first, based on their impact on your productivity. This will help create a focused plan of action that yields noticeable improvements in your daily routine.

  • Which of these activities have the most negative impact on my productivity?
  • Are there any activities that, while unproductive, might be necessary for my well-being or work-life balance?

Step 5: Creating the ‘Don’t Do’ List

Here, you’ll articulate your ‘Don’t Do’ List, a manifesto of habits to avoid. This step is about commitment; by writing down these activities, you are pledging to yourself to steer clear of habits that lead to unproductive outcomes.

We now come to the crunch. Give yourself some time to work on this and ask yourself

  • What activities consistently disrupt my focus or productivity? This question helps identify the specific tasks or habits that most frequently derail your productivity. Consider both work-related and personal activities.
  • Why do I feel the need to engage in these activities? Understanding the underlying reasons why you engage in these unproductive activities is crucial. Is it due to habit, avoidance of more challenging tasks, a desire for distraction, or something else?
  • How do these activities impact my short-term and long-term goals? Reflect on the ways in which these activities hinder your progress towards your goals. Are they simply time-wasters, or do they have a more profound negative impact on your personal or professional growth?
  • What positive alternatives to these activities can I can engage in instead? For each activity on your ‘Don’t Do’ List, consider if there’s a more productive or beneficial alternative. For example, instead of checking social media, could you take a short walk or do a quick mindfulness exercise?
  • How will eliminating or reducing these activities improve my life? Envision the potential benefits and improvements to your daily routine and overall well-being by reducing or eliminating these activities. This can serve as a motivational factor in adhering to your ‘Don’t Do’ List.

Step 6: Implementation Plan

With your ‘Don’t Do’ List in hand, this step is about strategizing how to effectively eliminate or reduce these activities from your daily life. It involves setting practical steps and integrating support systems to ensure these changes are actionable.

For those difficult to break ‘habits’ think about using post it note – perhaps saying ‘remember No PC’ if you wanted to think before ploughing into the day.

Some things to explore

  • What specific strategies will I use to avoid or limit these activities?
  • How can I make these changes sustainable and resistant to old habits?

Step 7: Review and Adjust

Progress is not always linear, and this step is your opportunity to reflect on the changes you’ve implemented. It’s a time to celebrate successes, learn from challenges, and make necessary adjustments to your ‘Don’t Do’ List and strategies.

  • What successes or challenges have I encountered in following my ‘Don’t Do’ List?
  • How can I adjust my list and strategies for better results?

So there we have it – the don’t do task list. A powerful and dynamic worktool that can change the way you look at and do work.

This post was originally published on this site

The Powerful ‘Don’t Do’ List – the 7 Step Model.

The Powerful ‘Don’t Do’ List – the 7 Step Model.

I find that most productivity hints and tips suggest good practices that we should be doing. Reversing this, perhaps there are some things that we should absolutely not be doing and this has lead to creating The Don’t Do model.

Simply, this is about identifying things that we do as a part of a normal day that adds no or little value to what we are trying to achieve. Perhaps it is a ‘feel good’ to get many likes on your LinkedIn, or other social posts but are they adding any real value that you trade with your time. In a world brimming with distractions and demands, mastering the art of saying ‘No‘ to certain tasks can be transformative and increase your personal time or space.

This seven step process is designed to be followed sequentially.

The Powerful 'Don't Do' List - the 7 Step Model.

Step 1: Self-Reflection

Before diving into the worksheet, it’s crucial to set your intentions. This initial phase is about grounding yourself in your productivity goals and aligning them with the broader objectives of your personal and professional life.

Self-reflection is the cornerstone of personal development. This step is about observing your daily activities without judgment to gain awareness of where your time is currently being spent. It’s a discovery phase where patterns of behaviour are noted, providing a baseline for change.

Ask yourself

  • What are my main goals for improving productivity?
  • Which areas of my life/work do I feel need more focus?

Step 2: Identification of Time-Wasters

With a week’s worth of observations at hand, you will identify the recurring activities that contribute least to your goals. This step is about recognizing the habits that are holding you back so that you can begin to formulate a plan to change them.

You may find it useful to think about

  • What activities today made me feel unproductive?
  • Were there any moments when I felt my time could have been better spent?

Step 3: Categorisation

Categorisation helps to organize your identified time-wasters into groups. This step is essential for understanding the nature of your unproductive activities, which can then be addressed with more targeted strategies.

To help think about categories of activity, think about

  • What categories do these activities fall into (e.g., distractions, low-value tasks)?
  • How do these categories align with my personal and professional priorities?

Step 4: Prioritisation

Not all unproductive activities are created equal. This step involves prioritising which habits to tackle first, based on their impact on your productivity. This will help create a focused plan of action that yields noticeable improvements in your daily routine.

  • Which of these activities have the most negative impact on my productivity?
  • Are there any activities that, while unproductive, might be necessary for my well-being or work-life balance?

Step 5: Creating the ‘Don’t Do’ List

Here, you’ll articulate your ‘Don’t Do’ List, a manifesto of habits to avoid. This step is about commitment; by writing down these activities, you are pledging to yourself to steer clear of habits that lead to unproductive outcomes.

We now come to the crunch. Give yourself some time to work on this and ask yourself

  • What activities consistently disrupt my focus or productivity? This question helps identify the specific tasks or habits that most frequently derail your productivity. Consider both work-related and personal activities.
  • Why do I feel the need to engage in these activities? Understanding the underlying reasons why you engage in these unproductive activities is crucial. Is it due to habit, avoidance of more challenging tasks, a desire for distraction, or something else?
  • How do these activities impact my short-term and long-term goals? Reflect on the ways in which these activities hinder your progress towards your goals. Are they simply time-wasters, or do they have a more profound negative impact on your personal or professional growth?
  • What positive alternatives to these activities can I can engage in instead? For each activity on your ‘Don’t Do’ List, consider if there’s a more productive or beneficial alternative. For example, instead of checking social media, could you take a short walk or do a quick mindfulness exercise?
  • How will eliminating or reducing these activities improve my life? Envision the potential benefits and improvements to your daily routine and overall well-being by reducing or eliminating these activities. This can serve as a motivational factor in adhering to your ‘Don’t Do’ List.

Step 6: Implementation Plan

With your ‘Don’t Do’ List in hand, this step is about strategizing how to effectively eliminate or reduce these activities from your daily life. It involves setting practical steps and integrating support systems to ensure these changes are actionable.

For those difficult to break ‘habits’ think about using post it note – perhaps saying ‘remember No PC’ if you wanted to think before ploughing into the day.

Some things to explore

  • What specific strategies will I use to avoid or limit these activities?
  • How can I make these changes sustainable and resistant to old habits?

Step 7: Review and Adjust

Progress is not always linear, and this step is your opportunity to reflect on the changes you’ve implemented. It’s a time to celebrate successes, learn from challenges, and make necessary adjustments to your ‘Don’t Do’ List and strategies.

  • What successes or challenges have I encountered in following my ‘Don’t Do’ List?
  • How can I adjust my list and strategies for better results?

So there we have it – the don’t do task list. A powerful and dynamic worktool that can change the way you look at and do work.

This post was originally published on this site

Ensuring Confidentiality and Privacy in Coaching: A Client’s Perspective

In today’s digital age, where data breaches and privacy concerns are rampant, clients seeking coaching services are more vigilant than ever about their personal information’s safety. As a client, it’s crucial to understand the measures your coach takes to ensure your confidentiality and privacy in coaching.

This narrative, inspired by the International Coaching Federation Code of Conduct and guidelines from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), offers insights into best practices coaches should adopt. This gives the relationship the freedom to explore confidentiality in workplace coaching.

For simplicity, this narrative on confidentiality in life executive coaching is split into four areas. This is driven more from a How do you ensure confidentiality in coaching? rather than a why perspective. We just accept that Why is a given.

Pre-Coaching Preparations

Understanding the Confidentiality Agreement

Before you begin your coaching journey, your coach should provide a confidentiality agreement. This document is not just a formality; it’s a testament to the coach’s commitment to safeguarding your information. Ensure you understand the terms and ask questions if anything is unclear. The agreement should specify what is deemed confidential and under what circumstances, if any, this confidentiality might be breached.

Consent for Recordings

If your coach wishes to record sessions, they should seek your explicit written consent beforehand. This consent should detail how the recording will be used, stored, and eventually disposed of. As a client, you have the right to decline such requests if you’re uncomfortable.

Data Storage Solutions

Your coach should use encrypted storage solutions for any electronic records pertaining to your sessions. This encryption ensures that even if data is accessed unlawfully, it remains unreadable.

For physical records, such as handwritten notes, a locked filing cabinet in a secure location is a must. They should also ensure that any notebook that they use does not refer to the client by name and that this notebook is stored securely in transit.

During Coaching Sessions

Choosing the Right Environment

Your coaching sessions should be conducted in a private setting. If sessions are virtual, the location for both coach and client is critical. Avoiding coffee shops is a must and using headphones can prevent eavesdropping. It’s also wise to use encrypted video conferencing tools, which offer an added layer of security against potential hackers (but this is a norm nowadays)

Communication Channels

The ICO emphasises the importance of secure communication channels. Your coach should avoid discussing sensitive matters over text unless using encrypted messaging apps. Regular phone calls, emails, or popular messaging apps might not offer the level of security needed to protect your information.

Avoiding Third-party Discussions

One of the cornerstones of the ICF Code of Conduct is the commitment to client confidentiality. Your coach should never discuss your case with third parties, including other clients, without your explicit consent. It could be that your coach decides to share the context of your conversation with their supervisor for further reflection – they should do this whilst keeping the client anonymised.

Post-Coaching Considerations

Disposal of Notes and Recordings

Once your coaching relationship concludes, or if certain documents are no longer needed, your coach should dispose of them securely. Electronic records should be permanently deleted, while paper notes should be shredded. The ICO provides guidelines on secure data disposal, which your coach should be familiar with.

Regular Reviews

The world of data protection is dynamic, with regulations and best practices evolving. Your coach should regularly review their confidentiality policies, ensuring they align with the latest standards, including the UK’s Data Protection Act and GDPR.

Supervision and Peer Consultation

While coaches might seek supervision or peer consultation, they should do so without revealing your identity. Using pseudonyms or discussing cases in a manner that doesn’t identify the client is crucial.

Ongoing Practices

Staying Updated

Your coach should be proactive in staying updated on data protection regulations. The ICO offers resources and guidelines that professionals can use to ensure they’re in compliance.

Software Updates

Outdated software can be a vulnerability. Your coach should ensure that all software, especially communication tools, are regularly updated to benefit from the latest security patches.

Open Communication

Lastly, always maintain open communication with your coach. If you have concerns about your privacy, voice them. A good coach will address these concerns transparently, showcasing the steps they’ve taken to ensure your data’s security.

As a client, you entrust your coach not only with your personal growth but also with your personal information. Understanding the measures they take to protect this trust is crucial. By being informed and proactive, you can ensure a coaching relationship that’s both productive and secure.

This post was originally published on this site

Ensuring Confidentiality and Privacy in Coaching: A Client’s Perspective

Ensuring Confidentiality and Privacy in Coaching: A Client’s Perspective

In today’s digital age, where data breaches and privacy concerns are rampant, clients seeking coaching services are more vigilant than ever about their personal information’s safety. As a client, it’s crucial to understand the measures your coach takes to ensure your confidentiality and privacy in coaching.

This narrative, inspired by the International Coaching Federation Code of Conduct and guidelines from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), offers insights into best practices coaches should adopt. This gives the relationship the freedom to explore confidentiality in workplace coaching.

For simplicity, this narrative on confidentiality in life executive coaching is split into four areas. This is driven more from a How do you ensure confidentiality in coaching? rather than a why perspective. We just accept that Why is a given.

Pre-Coaching Preparations

Understanding the Confidentiality Agreement

Before you begin your coaching journey, your coach should provide a confidentiality agreement. This document is not just a formality; it’s a testament to the coach’s commitment to safeguarding your information. Ensure you understand the terms and ask questions if anything is unclear. The agreement should specify what is deemed confidential and under what circumstances, if any, this confidentiality might be breached.

Consent for Recordings

If your coach wishes to record sessions, they should seek your explicit written consent beforehand. This consent should detail how the recording will be used, stored, and eventually disposed of. As a client, you have the right to decline such requests if you’re uncomfortable.

Data Storage Solutions

Your coach should use encrypted storage solutions for any electronic records pertaining to your sessions. This encryption ensures that even if data is accessed unlawfully, it remains unreadable.

For physical records, such as handwritten notes, a locked filing cabinet in a secure location is a must. They should also ensure that any notebook that they use does not refer to the client by name and that this notebook is stored securely in transit.

During Coaching Sessions

Choosing the Right Environment

Your coaching sessions should be conducted in a private setting. If sessions are virtual, the location for both coach and client is critical. Avoiding coffee shops is a must and using headphones can prevent eavesdropping. It’s also wise to use encrypted video conferencing tools, which offer an added layer of security against potential hackers (but this is a norm nowadays)

Communication Channels

The ICO emphasises the importance of secure communication channels. Your coach should avoid discussing sensitive matters over text unless using encrypted messaging apps. Regular phone calls, emails, or popular messaging apps might not offer the level of security needed to protect your information.

Avoiding Third-party Discussions

One of the cornerstones of the ICF Code of Conduct is the commitment to client confidentiality. Your coach should never discuss your case with third parties, including other clients, without your explicit consent. It could be that your coach decides to share the context of your conversation with their supervisor for further reflection – they should do this whilst keeping the client anonymised.

Post-Coaching Considerations

Disposal of Notes and Recordings

Once your coaching relationship concludes, or if certain documents are no longer needed, your coach should dispose of them securely. Electronic records should be permanently deleted, while paper notes should be shredded. The ICO provides guidelines on secure data disposal, which your coach should be familiar with.

Regular Reviews

The world of data protection is dynamic, with regulations and best practices evolving. Your coach should regularly review their confidentiality policies, ensuring they align with the latest standards, including the UK’s Data Protection Act and GDPR.

Supervision and Peer Consultation

While coaches might seek supervision or peer consultation, they should do so without revealing your identity. Using pseudonyms or discussing cases in a manner that doesn’t identify the client is crucial.

Ongoing Practices

Staying Updated

Your coach should be proactive in staying updated on data protection regulations. The ICO offers resources and guidelines that professionals can use to ensure they’re in compliance.

Software Updates

Outdated software can be a vulnerability. Your coach should ensure that all software, especially communication tools, are regularly updated to benefit from the latest security patches.

Open Communication

Lastly, always maintain open communication with your coach. If you have concerns about your privacy, voice them. A good coach will address these concerns transparently, showcasing the steps they’ve taken to ensure your data’s security.

As a client, you entrust your coach not only with your personal growth but also with your personal information. Understanding the measures they take to protect this trust is crucial. By being informed and proactive, you can ensure a coaching relationship that’s both productive and secure.

This post was originally published on this site