Interruptions – Rhoads Life Coaching

Every interruption (big and small) causes us to reset; reducing attention, efficiency and effectiveness. Personally or professionally, interruptions cost a lot of time and energy. Take a minute and estimate – how many times do you get interrupted in a day?

Microsoft studied its Excel users to determine how interruptions impacted their ability to efficiently work. They estimated it took 18 minutes to recover from an interruption and regain full effectiveness at a task. In addition, they estimated that each worker was interrupted every 11 minutes. Because of this, there was never a point during the study where the user was at full effectiveness due to interruptions.

Our lives are full of this! We are constantly bombarded by phone calls, emails, text messages, notifications, etc. These constant distractions prevent us from being fully present for just about everything we do. Interruptions drive through our day, just like the cars in this video, forcing us to reset. At what cost? Getting all of the details for a task? Completing a task without errors? Being able to complete a task on time or early? Being present when talking to your spouse or children? Driving safely in the car?

I am as guilty as anyone else of being distracted by interruptions. My challenge to you is to reduce them. Put the phone away when talking to someone. Turn the notifications off on your phone and computer when working on a project. Disconnect the notifications from your phone to your FitBit. Close the door to your office when having an important conversation. Schedule blocks of time on your calendar to complete a task. Anything to reduce the number of interruptions at work and home will lead to more fulfilling and meaningful work and fun. What will it take for you to start reducing interruptions? – www.rhoadscoaching.com

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Creating Meaning – Rhoads Life Coaching

One of the most significant things that separates us from the rest of the animal kingdom is how we are creating meaning in life. Other animals are able to learn and adapt, but (as far as we can tell) they are unable to step outside themselves and make sense of the world. We spend a lot of time wanting and needing meaning in our lives. Do you think about how you create meaning though?

We can create meaning out of almost anything. Your child’s security blanket, a lucky penny we pick up on the sidewalk, weddings, funerals, graduations, etc. The things we find meaningful are unique to each of us through our vision, values, priorities and goals. We create meaning, though, by stepping back from ourselves, observing, and making sense of what we see.

It is critical for our personal and professional development to be able to see the context of how we fit into the world around us. By making sense of this context, by knowing why, we are able to see our own value and purpose. THIS is meaningful.

If meaning can be created, it can also be developed – just like any other skill. Where do you find meaning in your life? Where is meaning missing? What do you need to do to step back and observe yourself as you go through your day? To make sense of how your daily life fits into the bigger picture? – www.rhoadscoaching.com

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Unstuck – Young Professional Panel Discussion

Are you a young professional who is feeling stuck? Come join us this Saturday for a panel discussion about the challenges facing young professionals and how to get UNSTUCK!

I am so excited to host this panel at the Erlanger Library this coming Saturday from 10:30 to noon! If you are a young professional looking for direction and focus, come join us! – www.rhoadscoaching.com

Unstuck - Rhoads Life Coaching
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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Running With Your Head Up – Rhoads Life Coaching

It is a key athletic skill to be able to advance the ball downfield with your eyes up. Running with your head up allows you to see plays develop, to avoid potential obstacles, and to create opportunities as the game flows. We want our young athletes to learn this as quickly as possible to develop their game. How often do we forget to do this in our game of life?

It is difficult as a young athlete to trust your skills enough to dribble the basketball or soccer ball without looking at the ball. It takes a lot of practice to not put our head down as we run the bases. Hopefully you had a coach growing up that invested the time and energy to develop your confidence and ability to look up the field as you passed, dribbled, or ran. It allowed you to continue on to a higher level of competitive play.

How often do we develop this same skill in the other aspects of our life? What would running with your head up look like at your job? Are you developing this skill in your team or staff? Are you practicing this ability inside your friendships and family? Having the confidence and ability to navigate your own emotional and relational intelligence with a sense of seeing the field of play (not looking at our feet) will take you to the next higher level of navigating through life. – www.rhoadscoaching.com

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Everything Is A Choice – Rhoads Life Coaching

It might be difficult to accept the hypothesis that “everything is a choice”. When I say that I mean EVERYTHING. You choose whether to get out of bed each day. What car to drive. What clothes to wear. These choices are easy to see.

You also choose the thoughts and you attitudes take. You choose how you run your business, how you treat your clients, your employees, your family and loved ones. You choose how you treat yourself.

The choices you avoid and don’t make are also choices. Everything is a choice.

IF you are willing to accept the mindset that everything is a choice you are taking responsibility for yourself. This adds power to everything you do and who you are. Your life has the ability to change by accepting this responsibility.

What choices are you making each day? What choices are you allowing others to make for you? What choices are you avoiding? How will your life be different if you accept that everything is a choice?

Matthew Kelly wrote an essay in 1999 called The Rhythm of Life reflecting this philosophy. – www.rhoadscoaching.com

 

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Same Amount of Time As Everyone Else – Rhoads Life Coaching

Who do you look up to? What about this person is inspiring? Better yet, how does this person accomplish whatever you find inspiring? Whether you look up to a professional athlete, a business person, a family member, or a historical figure, this person has accomplished something significant with their life. How did they achieve this given that they have the same amount of time as everyone else?

Think about that for a minute. Bill Gates, Mother Teresa, Warren Buffett, Lebron James, and Dwayne Johnson all have the same 24 hours each day that you do. How are they able to get so much done day-in and day-out compared to the rest of us? While talent and resources play a role, at the end of the day it boils down to motivation and drive. How much do these people WANT to create their future compared to the rest of us? Based on their success, a LOT more!

The point becomes –

What are you doing with the 24 hours each day that you are given?

We need to be healthy by eating and sleeping, but how much time do you spend on tasks and distractions that do not reflect your values and priorities?

Have you ever quantified how you spend your time each day? Make a log! How much time do you spend in the car? On social media? Texting? Watching television or movies? Once you have quantified your ‘average’ day (make sure it adds up to 24 hours!), are there areas you can reduce to add more meaningful activities? What would your life be like if you were able to spend more time doing the meaningful things that are important to you? – www.rhoadscoaching.com

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Your Future Self – Rhoads Life Coaching

Because you are able to imagine a version of your future self, you are able to develop a relationship with that future you. It is reasonable to expect that you will exist at some point in the future. Whether it is 1 year, or 5 years, or 10 years, some version of you is out there in the future. If that future self pauses to look back at the current you (you do this every day looking back into the past), then for a moment you and your future self are headed toward each other in time. Eventually you will meet! Someday you will reach that future date and become the future you.

For now though, the two versions of your being can catch a glimpse of each other through time. What do they think of each other? If they were to meet, what would they say to each other? Would they be happy to satisfied with who you are and who you are becoming? What advice would they have for each other?

This is a powerful perspective! Who is that future self? Being able to imagine that vision of the future helps to guide and inspire every single decision you make each day. Are you on the right path? Creating a relationship with your future self allows you to create a vision of the future to direct your current choices!  – www.rhoadscoaching.com

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Focus and Distractions – Rhoads Life Coaching

We walk a daily path between focus and distractions. The practice of focus keeps our attention on what is most valuable to us. Distractions shift that focus away. We are inundated with distractions that prevent us from focusing.

I recently led an exercise where we quantified the impact of distractions on very simple tasks. Taking two children’s puzzles, two teams completed as much of two puzzles as they could in a short time. Then the two teams switched every 20 seconds between the same two puzzles, for the same amount of time, resulting in a 50% drop in pieces completed. Finally we combined the two puzzles together and work on both puzzles at once, resulting in ANOTHER 50% drop in pieces completed. The more distractions, the less focus! Even on a simple task, the distractions had significant impact.

If it takes on average 15 and 20 minutes to reach peak focus on a task, and most people experience some form of distraction every 11 minutes, we are constantly re-focusing before we are interrupted again. Is your job like this? How about your family conversations? We lose valuable time, energy, and effectiveness in all aspects of our lives from distractions.

In order to focus it helps to identify the few things that are the most valuable to complete in any given event. What are the five most valuable things that must be done today? Naming them each day creates focus.

Where are your greatest sources of distraction for a particular topic? Does the phone need to be put away? Do you need to close the door to your office for a few minutes? Being intentional about creating time and space for task reduces the number of distractions.

How are you going to focus and reduce distractions during your busy week? – www.rhoadscoaching.com

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Celebrating Each Win – Rhoads Life Coaching

We teach our athletes to celebrate every touchdown, foul shot, or at bat. Think about that for a minute. Even if the game can’t be won, our athletic teams practice a philosophy of celebrating each win.  Why don’t we translate that same philosophy to our relationships and careers?

Why is there a gap between athletics and other careers in how we approach daily work? Sometimes businesses fail to honor good work as it is expected and “part of the job”. But when our teams score touchdowns or hit home runs we cheer even though it is that team and athlete’s “job” to play the game.

What if we coached our employees and co-workers to celebrate the same way a team runs to the end zone after a touchdown? How would our careers be different?

To be clear, I’m not talking about end zone dances or high-fives or head-butts in your office. There can be a personalized version of that same intent though. There is an advantage to any team to cheering each other on. What is your version of that in your daily life and career? What would it take to celebrate each win? – www.rhoadscoaching.com

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life

Greater Than the Sum of the Parts – Rhoads Life Coaching

Aristotle is credited with stating the Greek philosophy that “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts”. As human beings we see and assign value and meaning to the wholeness of something.

We have evidence that this philosophy is true.

If we take all of my parts and spread them out on a table, each part is valuable, but something is lost in trying to reassemble my parts. The spark that creates my life is lost and is greater than each of the individual pieces of me.

From a different angle, you can my car apart and spread it out on a table and then put it back together. If I know what I am doing (or have help), it will still work! The tires and engine of my car have value. But the running, functioning vehicle is much more valuable to me. We assign value and meaning in the mobility and image we present driving down the road in a healthy car.

We have been to rock concerts or athletic events where the energy of the crowd transforms the event into something bigger than individual part of the event. Those are the concerts and competitive events we remember the most.

Just like any other skill or trait, this value of the whole can be developed (a new car is much more valuable to us than an old car).

So, if we are greater than the sum of our parts and this wholeness can be developed, where in your life is there value in developing this wholeness? What parts can be grown and increased? How will you notice that wholeness?  – www.rhoadscoaching.com

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finding meaning and purpose in daily life