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Getting Organized in the Era of Endless

SQUALL PRESS, the publishing division of FileHeads, is pleased to announce Getting Organized in the Era of Endless: What to Do When Information, Interruption, Work and Stuff are Endless But Time is Not!
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Posts Tagged ‘leisure’

How to Develop A Family Technology Policy

Thursday, September 5, 2013 @ 05:09 PM
posted by admin

ORGANIZING TOOLKIT SERIES

We live in the Era of Endless connectivity. We are wirelessly tethered 24/7 to family, friends and fans, co-workers, customers and clients, vendors, suppliers, and perfect and imperfect strangers. One effect of endless connectivity is “work creep.” Work creep is the tendency for work to extend into times typically reserved for leisure such as meal times, vacation time and sleep. The overall effect of endless connectivity is to blur the line between work and leisure. Even leisure activities like sharing family videos on Facebook, Checking your Facebook status, commenting on blogs, participating in LinkedIn Groups, and following people on Twitter all take a little work. They also take time. That time has to come from somewhere. A second effect of endless connectivity is that it diverts time away from quality-of-life activities – like real-time with the family and social activities – to digital activities.

In the Era of Endless, families find it helpful to have guidelines for coping with the temptation to endless work and the time-suck of endless connectivity by creating a Family Technology Policy. The Family Technology Policy lays out agreed upon guidelines to balance the best that technology has to offer with real-time, in-person family and social activities.

Every family is different and so each Family Technology Policy will be different. Take a look at the sample Family Technology Policy as a guide.

SMITH FAMILY TECHNOLOGY POLICY

  • No devices at the dinner table. All devices are treated equally whether it’s an iPad, TV, tablet, iPhone, or anything that beeps, rings, flashes, or has a screen.
  • No screens of any kind open or active after 9 pm.
  • No phones within 10 feet of water whether it’s the ocean, a pool, the bathtub, or the toilet.
  • No texting in front of grandma because it annoys her and she’d rather talk to you.
  • No driver in this family will ever text while driving.
  • Hugs, eye contact, and live conversation will dominate in this family over texts, calls, and technology.
  • If the sun and school are out, you will find us outdoors without our devices.

Consequences:  If the policy is violated, the parents will decide on an appropriate action which may include temporarily limiting usage of a device, curtailment of internet time, putting the device in “time-out”, or other actions.

Step 1 – Have a family meeting

Step 2 – Choose someone to lead the meeting who will explain the need for the policy. (This can be an adult in the family or you can use a neutral third party like a professional organizer.)

Step 3 – Have handy a large flipchart or other visual aid to write on.

Step 4 – Everyone in the family has an equal voice regarding what they think should or should not be in the policy.

Step 5 – Keep it brief. Up to ten bullet points is usually adequate.

Step 6 – Take a vote to officially approve the policy.

Step 7 – Have everyone in the family sign-off on the policy by signing their names to it.

Step 8 – Discuss what will happen if someone ignores the policy or does something that conflicts with the policy. Will there be consequences? Temporarily limiting usage of a device, curtailment of internet time, putting the device in “time-out” are examples of consequences. Write the consequences down.

Step 9 – Post the approved policy and the consequences in a prominent location in the home and send a copy to each family member electronically.

For more organizing tools to cope with the Era of Endless, order the book by Judith Kolberg, Getting Organized in the Era of Endless: What to Do When Information, Interruption, Work and Stuff is Endless But Time is Not. Available at www.squallpress.net

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The Leisure Dividend

Wednesday, August 10, 2011 @ 09:08 AM
posted by admin

The point of productivity is to generate a ‘leisure dividend.’ When you are productive you do more in less time leaving you time left over for not working, for having fun or just relaxing. At least that’s the theory. Some people are naturally productive. They can prioritize instantly, integrate new tasks on the run, and finish what they start. Productivity tools such as mobile devices with multiple functions, apps, and cloud-based tools can increase productivity. The problem is people tend to reinvest their leisure dividend into more work instead of into leisure. Only 38% of Americans take all of their vacation days. 72% check into the office during their vacations. You recall Clement Clark Moore’s Twas the Night Before Christmas? Remember the line “. ..and mamma in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap, had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap. Not, “…had just settled down for a long winters nap”, but instead “…had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap.” We need to rest our brains. All that information we are getting? It needs to be digested, it needs to sink in, be reflected upon and that requires rest.

How do you measure personal productivity? Some people are taking a crack at tracking all their time using a variety of apps. I think tracking our time holds some value but the time is takes to do all that tracking might be using up any benefit of time gained being productive in the first place.

If you are someone who strives for productivity but has difficulty realizing your leisure dividend, try doing the following

  • Take whatever vacation you have coming to you. Scientists have found that it takes at least 3 days to relax, and to feel you are on vacation, so take at least 4 days.
  • Full engagement in reading is also a good investment of your leisure divident. In-depth, hard copy book reading is a multi-sensory experience involving motor, visual, materiality, and focus that helps us be engaged but relaxed.
  • Exercise promotes weight control, lowers stress, controls cholesterol, and supports a good night’s sleep making it a top choice for investing your leisure dividend.
  • Sleep a little more or learn to nap.
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