Last year at the July 2014' Blogher conference during a discussion with Guy Kawasaki, Arianna Huffington shared lessons learned during her career.  She really proved to be a grounded and gracious individual with wisdom anyone open to living a more full life could implement.  This interview was a highlight of the 3-day conference.

In fact, as eager attendees waited patiently in line to get pictures and signed copies of Arianna Huffington's book Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder .  Arianna's team attempted to hurry her along as she had a flight to catch.  Instead of turning away the group she insisted on signing each and everyone's book.  There were approximately 20 or so more folks in the line.  This was really sweet of her as I to was able to get my purchased copy signed.

Marie Forleo of MarieTV talks further with Arianna in this 17-minute informal discussion.  Have a listen and let me know what you think!

After reading her book I've implemented several of the suggestions that have contributed to keeping balance on a daily.  

1) Getting more sleep has been a priority for me.  Whenever we have conflicting priorities it's important to get restful sleep for optimum energy and mood.  This year I've stopped staying up until the morning hours trying to "get things done".  I've had to sacrifice momentum, but I definately feel better which will benefit me for years to come.

2) Stop treating my phone like a GOD.  Staying connected to those we love and are important is fine.  Nevertheless it's important to put our communication tools in their place.  This contributes to more productivity, focus, and well-being.

Have a great weekend be well and thrive!

Jenelle 

 

Just One Thing for 2015 – MultiTasking is DEAD

Man focusing on phone

Just One Thing for 2015

Do you find yourself still trying to re-focus as the new year is racing along?  Many have their usual long list of resolutions and intentions.  And others including myself  have decided to focus on just one thing.

During a recent episode of Pat Flynn’s – Smart Passive Income podcast he shared http://www.the1thing.com/.  This book zeroed in on why multitasking can do more harm than good.  In fact the authors called it counterproductive.

Having the courage and intention to focus on what’s important takes time.  Silencing the noise and saying no to multitasking takes daily habit resetting of expectations for yourself and those who demand much from you.  This book really gives the why and the how helping to break the bad habit of “doing it all” and multitasking.

Check it out and let me know what you think!!

We have the best of intentions, when racing from one activity to the other in an effort to get EVERYTHING done.  Well after reading “The 1 Thing” no more multitasking allowed for me.  

A colleague recently shared how she sets specific vows and an overall theme to stay focused.  What a grand idea!  As I thought about what was to come for 2015 this method seemed really affective.  

So for 2015 CREATIVITY will be my one thing.  Creativity will be my theme when focusing on blogging , business, and family goals.  Nothing to slow you down like the feeling of wanting to progress but not moving as fast as you’d like.  Well that is OK.  For me as long as I am staying creative and finding ways to move forward that will do just fine.

Thinking creatively spurs action and action spurs completion of goals.

So for 2015 what is your ONE thing?

Wishing you a great year!

Jenelle

Reflections – Embrace Distractions It’s Part of the Journey…

Collage-Fall Leaves 11.13

The fall season has brought on all the usual suspects.  Seasonal colds, school projects, overindulgence in chocolate and the urge to hibernate.

Are you feeling similar distractions?  Business ideas and activities continue to beckon my attention.  Though I am still accomplishing project tasks the pace has certainly slowed.

Last week author Michael Hyatt shared a similar post where he commented, “…the last week has been tremendously unproductive. Though I had big plans, I’ve not accomplished much of anything.

He had a few ways of dealing with feeling unproductive and distracted here is my interpretation in brief:

1) Acknowledge your current feelings or state of your business

2) Use it understanding why we are where we are can be very telling

3) Embrace it, life happens.  Roll with the punches and control what you can

The realities of life will always demand we stop, listen, and adjust accordingly.

Your turn, how are you embracing and managing distractions at present?

Best wishes,

Jenelle

P.S.

Photo of my 3 yr old daughter enjoying fall leaves. :-)  Gotta love it!

3 Ways to Secure your Evernote Data

In a recent post on using Evernote for tax planning a reader asked, “What about security?” Keeping our data safe in a digital world is a constant challenge and it is no different when using cloud based systems for business.  Author and speaker Michael Hyatt gave a thorough overview listing 6 reasons you can be sure your Evernote data is secure.  See post here.

To date Evernote has increased their security features to include (1) 2-Step verification, (2) account history, and (3) authorized applications which are available to Premium and ‘gratis’ account users. Check out this blog post for details.

Whenever choosing new resources for business or home it is always a good practice to check the data security settings and options.

Rock on and enjoy the long holiday weekend!

Jenelle

Paperless Tax Planning with Evernote

What comes to mind when tax season arrives?  Stress?  Frustration?  Many of us tend to feel at least a measure of increased tension as tax season approaches.  Going through a year’s worth of paperwork associated with business transactions and whittling them down to a few spreadsheets or folder items is rarely a welcomed task.  Let’s take a look at how you’re accustomed to prepare for tax season and consider how to do them the Evernote way.

evernote-icon

Tax Planning Then

The organized business owner generally keeps a properly labeled set of folders with financial documents, statements, payroll information and charitable donations archived in the office or home.  Then, as tax season arrives, these documents creep out claiming real estate on much of our desks or the desk of our tax preparer.

This can be a tedious process for even the most organized business owner.  For those that let the documentation take over, scattered paper piles, some online files, and still others at the office can really get out of hand.  Once office documentation gets to this point no doubt a hike up Mission Peak (Fremont, CA) on the hottest of summer days may be a preferred activity.

Consider Evernote Now

Invest in an affordable scanner for the office (a Fujitsu ScanSnap retails for under $500 on www.amazon.com) or check out http://goo.gl/uAL6CC – Evernote scansnap.  Connect it to your Evernote account.  Then, every time you receive a bank/credit card statement, charitable donation acknowledgement, or other financial documentation simply scan directly to your Evernote account.  Statements can even be “clipped” to your Evernote account.  These documents can all be organized into a notebook labeled ‘Finances’ or ‘2013 Taxes’.  Evernote allows you to tag each statement type if more specifics needed (i.e., Bank, Charitable Donations, Payroll).  See here Adam Dachis, LifeHacker blogger suggestions for other affordable scanning tools and suggestions on running a paperless office.

Spend most of your time outside of the office?  Most smartphones allow for a quick snapshot of receipts (i.e., business trip dinner with clients) and tagging these images with a tag like ‘client receipts’ insuring these are organized.  Evernote partners like Docscanner can improve the quality of your snapshot making it easier to search within this tool.  Camscanner has been my iPhone scanner app of choice.

Saving time and energy during tax season with Evernote will allow you to get back to business. When taxes are done, save your paperwork in the same folder by scanning it, or adding the PDF into your notebook.  Your previous year’s tax documents will be securely in one place for easy reference the following tax season.

Have you gone paperless?  If so what tools are working for you?  I’d love to hear your comments!

Be effective in ALL you do!

Jenelle

Perfectionism Slowing Business Down?

Do you struggle with perfectionism, analyzing every detail relating to a business project, or launch??  Spinning your wheels in an effort to get it #perfecteverytime will slow down business growth.  The amount of additional stress stifles creativity.

Fears and Dreams Quote - Pinterest

Source: Gerard Asay, Flickr

As a busy parent and spouse I find family and my faith helps to keep things in perspective. Once I’ve researched and planned to move forward on an idea, it is then time to #justdoit! Taking unnecessary time to second guess is counterintuitive.  Decisively implementing as appropriate and adjusting along the way has led to greater discovery and success.

In a recent post three observations were discovered by #girlentreepreneur as she launched a new product.  She comments, “Taking action forces me to address and overcome any REAL problems the business will face.”

Do you agree with her sentiments?  How do you keep the perfectionism monster under control?  Chime in!!

Be effective in ALL you do!!

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Jenelle

 

Small Business Burnout Tips to Avoid Losing Steam

2013 has been full of new and exciting adventures at Efficacy Plus.   Daily demands of building a business and managing family cannot be denied.  If there were a guaranteed method for sustained increased productivity I’d be one of the first in line.  :-)

What can help keep the fire and passion of small business ownership burning hot?  Consider these 3 tips I’ve found helpful:

1. Establish priorities based on goals.  Being goal oriented helps me to alleviate unnecessary tasks.  Chasing after a 2 yr. old and managing other conflicting priorities does not lend itself to a strict daily calendar.  Staying agile yet focused on goals has helped move projects along that otherwise would not be completed.

2. Minimize multitasking.  Notice the emphasis on “minimize” multitasking, do you find it difficult to stop this terrible habit?  You’re not alone!!  The distractions of doing multiple things at once can be down right BAD.  Have you ever been in a conversation where you’ve asked a question and the person you’re speaking with wasn’t paying attention?  Not only can this be seen as rude, you’ll find tasks or conversations may have to be repeated due to the lack of attention the first time.

3. Take time to have REAL conversation.  Taking the time to enjoy a real conversation with a loved one or colleague is a great way to rejuvenate.  Spending extensive amounts of time connected to our digital gadgets can really take a toll on the ability to make real connections.   Doing this can fuel increased creativity make us more productive during our next work session.
Burnout is avoidable if we pace ourselves.  We’ve all heard the saying, “This is a journey not a sprint.”

Do you have strategies to avoid burnout?  Share what has worked for you in your business.

Be effective in ALL you do!

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Jenelle

October is Cyber Security Awareness Month!

Did you know October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month?  Many business owners have shared the horror of realizing their systems were compromised, and I’ve personally provided support during the process of backup, replacing , and researching these attacks.  Have you experienced the loss of productivity, frustration and lack of preparedness such an attack can cause?  In this post we’ll learn more about Botnets and how to protect ourselves.

According to StaySafeOnline, Botnets are generally networks of computers infected by malware (computer virus, keyloggers and other malicious software) and controlled remotely by cyber criminals, usually for financial gain or to launch attacks on website or networks.  Botnets may infect and use laptops, desktops, servers, routers, smartphones, or any other network equipment to conduct malicious activity.

Title Screen

Source: TTC Press Images, Flickr

All computers connected to the Internet are susceptible to malware infections.  Stay Safe Online, powered by National Cyber Security Alliance provides the below keys to survival in the Digital Age:

Keep a Clean Machine

Keep software current: Having the latest operating system, software, anti-virus protection, web browsers and apps are the best defenses against viruses, malware, and other online threats.

Enable automatic updates: Most security software will automatically connect and update to defend against known risks. Turn on automatic updates if that’s an available option.

Protect all Internet-connected devices:  Remember smartphones, tablets, gaming systems and other devices can be infected with viruses and malware, too. Protect them like you would your computer, including updating apps and operating systems.

Plug & scan:  USB sticks, thumb drives, CDs, DVDs and other external media can be infected by viruses and malware. Use your security software to scan them.

Connect With Care

When in doubt, throw it out:  Delete any online communications (i.e., texts, emails, social media posts) that look suspicious, even if you think you know the source.  

Get savvy about Wi-Fi hotspots:  When using a public or unsecured wireless connection, avoid using sites and apps that require personal information like log-ins.

Be cautious about “scareware”:  Cybercriminals have used fear to compromise your computer and to steal your personal information, which may include credit card information and banking login credentials. If you get security notices saying you are infected and need to purchase software, these could very well be attempts to compromise your device.

If You Think You’re Infected:  If you are notified, become aware, or suspect your computer has become a bot, take immediate steps to remove malware.  You can find a list of free botnet detection and remediation resources at www.stopthinkconnect.org/keepacleanmachine.

And lastly, update passwords periodically this can be a great way to keep our computers and data safe.

Be effective in ALL you do!

Jenelle

What is an Administrative Consultant Anyway?

By definition, “Administrative Consultants are experts (due to their many years of administrative experience) who specialize specifically in the business and art of administrative support (hence the “administrative” part of the term). And because we have such a unique, bird’s eye view of peoples’ businesses, many Administrative Consultants also offer clients advice and guidance on administrative systems and how they can streamline their operations and improve efficiency and effectiveness (this is where the consulting hat comes in and why “consultant” is part of our term). – (http://www.administrativeconsultantsassoc.com/)

questions

Source, rodaniel

Our professional title is one avenue for potential clients, colleagues and others to understand our field of work or unique skills we possess.  My professional background has provided a vast array of experiences in Human Resources, Marketing, Customer Service and Education.  The majority of these experiences were gained while working with top Executives, steering HUGE organizational changes.  This really provided a front row seat into the most confidential of information as key decision makers would change their companies for years to come.

When meeting other business owners and educating them about Administrative Consulting, it seems the term is still fairly new.  This may be because Administrative Consulting is a unique niche, and no two consultants are alike.  This profession can be likened to musical artists who lean towards eclectic musical genres not completely “fitting” into a specific box of jazz, reggae, classical, and so forth.  Many times I’ve found these artists to be the most creative, inspiring musically, and all around cool!!  Administrative Consultants specialize in social media, project management, transcription services, video editing, and a host of other specialties.

The advances of technology in the digital space have really allowed for Administrative Consultants to have increased flexibility in the way they work.  Working from my home office has been a regular occurrence for much of my career and is how I currently engage with my client’s on a regular basis.

If you are a life coach, business consultant, speaker, or small business service provider I’d be happy to learn more about your business.  Let’s connect!

Be effective in ALL you do!

Jenelle

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