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Time Is On Your Side

October 2008
In This Issue
Time Is On Your Side
Back Away from the Computer
For Your Reading Pleasure
Have I Thanked You Lately?
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Time Is On Your Side
clockYou've probably heard that one of the best ways to learn something is to teach it.  That's why I developed a time management seminar.  Managing time, like staying organized, is an everyday challenge for most people, especially those of us who are up to big things.  And by developing a presentation, I had the opportunity to study, read and revel in the topic, which turned out to be time well spent. 
 
Mick Jagger 
This past month I shared my presentation, "Just Enough Hours in the Day: Time Management with a Twist," at the fall conference of the Wisconsin Institute of CPAs.  I came up with the title after hearing a woman say, in a weary and defeated tone, "Well, you know, there just aren't enough hours in the day."  Actually, I thought, there really are enough hours in the day... in fact, everyone gets 24!  It's what we do with those hours that make the difference between failure and success.  I decided to approach the topic as if time were an abundant but precious resource, and I chose as my theme song "Time Is On My Side" (yes, it is) by the Rolling Stones. 
  
Back Away from the Computer 
Julie MorgensternFor my research, I turned to the über-guru of time and space management, Julie Morgenstern.  Besides her top-selling books Time Management From the Inside Out and Organizing >From the Inside Out, Ms. Morgenstern wrote a book with the intriguing title Never Check E-Mail in the MorningNever Check Email Book CoverFor those of you whose hearts stop beating when you hear that suggestion, let me assure you: she doesn't mean all morning.  Her suggestion, among others, is to avoid e-mail during the first hour of your day.  Otherwise, we risk letting the "tyranny of the urgent" (that is, someone else's agenda) take precedence over our own priorities.  We all know how alluring e-mail can be, and before we know it, poof! the morning's gone and we haven't gotten to our own agenda.  Ms. Morgenstern urges us to cleave to our to-do list... and only have one list, she advises.
Whether you use a Blackberry® or a paper calendarcalendar for tracking your appointments, a task list in Outlook® or a running list of to-dos in a spiral binder doesn't really matter.  What doesfiles matter is that you pick a system and stick with it.  That insight in itself was worth the price of the book.  I've integrated all my random Post-It® notes and to-do lists into one notebook and I'm practicing being loyal to this one system.  [I'll let you know how it goes.]
 
One of the things I learned from doing research for this presentation is that time management is an ongoing challenge for nearly all of us.  Perfectionism stifles creativity and multi-tasking can rob us of the moment.  When working with time management skills, set your goals high but be sure to give yourself (and others) some grace.
 
For Your Reading Pleasure
 

If you'd like a copy of the bibliography I developed for "Just Enough Hours in the Day," please send an email to admin@choicesworldwide.com with "Time Management" in the subject heading, and we'll be bookshappy to send you a list of books to help you with your own time/space challenges.  And if your company, association or community organization is looking for a speaker on the topic of time management, please let me know.  I'm already booking into 2009 and would love to be a resource to you.

Have I Thanked You Lately? 
WI CPAMy practice continues to grow, particularly as a speaker, and I have many people to thank... including Dennis Tomorsky, chief executive officer of the Wisconsin Institute of CPAs (left), Keith Chrisler, director of continuing professional education for WICPA (right) and Victoria Italiano, conference planner (photo courtesy of Sherry Albrecht, WICPA).  And thanks to Wendy Sech from the Illinois CPA Society for introducing me to Keith. 
 
I also want to thank Nancy Honeycutt and the executive board of the American Student Dental Association for inviting me to be their keynote speaker in August in Scottsdale, AZ.  My presentation on ethics, "Between the Lines: Building an Ethical Practice in a Turbulent World," was a joy to share with the 350+ student dentists from around the country.  Special thanks to Dr. Joe Morrissey from Wheaton, IL, for his contribution to the presentation.  His words of wisdom, directed to these extraordinary young folks who are the future of dentistry, moved us all.  Also, I again want to thank Wendy-Jo Toyama from the American Dental Association for her introduction to Nancy Honeycutt. 
 
 
I appreciate Ellen Rogin from the Metropolitan Capital Bank inviting me to speak at the bank's networking luncheon... and to Jennifer Wilken from Edward Jones, my thanks for asking me to support her leadership development meeting with her fellow Edward Jones associates.  Jillian Holly, also an Edward Jones associate, invited me to speak to her remarkable Network of Women Entrepreneurs at the elegant East Bank Club, and Steve Sitzberger asked me back to speak at the HOPE Ministry Job Club.
 
Thanks to my "posse," including Carolyn Milschewski who holds the fort when I'm out of town and Judy Beaver, executive virtual assistant and owner of The Office Pro.  Her PowerPoint skills rock.  And for those of you who have referred clients, speaking opportunities, book recommendations or other treasured connections, I thank you.  
Vickie AustinI'd like to leave you with a message of faith.  Without being foolish or naïve, I choose to approach my business--and life--with a sense of optimism in spite of the headlines of the day.  I remember the words of my former boss and publisher, now friend and colleague, Chuck Lauer, who ran Modern Healthcare magazine so successfully for so many years.  When the going got tough, Chuck reminded us all to "get back to basics."  Whether it's managing our calendars, our to-do lists or our relationships, I think getting back to basics is good advice for now and always.
Love,
 
Vickie 
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