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    4 Areas in which to Set Boundaries 

    Now more than ever, when overwhelm and mental exhaustion are commonplace, we need to get better at setting boundaries. 

    But where and how? 

    Here are four areas that often need boundaries or boundary-improvement. Doing so will increase your authority and model self-care to others. 

    Time 

    Create finite starting and ending times for meetings and work conversations. Schedule a non-negotiable afterwards if you have longwinded colleagues. 

    Your time is valuable, but you need to value it as well as teach others to

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    Speaking and Listening - Know Your Responsibilities 

    With tempers running short due to current societal conditions including the pandemic, reduced hours and pay, and long-term remote working, poor communication is inevitable.  When one person gets frustrated, emotions can take over.  Emotions trump brainpower every time.  That’s when it’s time to defuse and walk it back, or maybe even reschedule. 

    Keeping communication congenial helps brains work better.  Many communication problems can be eliminated with a few ground rules. Here are lists of responsibilities…

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    5 Strategies to Effectively Communicate Instructions Through Email 

    Businesses often accentuate succinctness in communications.  This is understandable.  No one wants to read a rambling message with unnecessary content.  However, efforts to appeal to today’s short attention spans and incorporate time-saving strategies often have the side effect of leaving out necessary information. This results in misunderstandings, with tasks completed incorrectly or ineffectually. 

    1.  Include context. 

    “You don’t know what you don’t know.”  The corollary of this adage is, “you don’t know…

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    5 Dos and Don'ts for Leadership during Difficult Times 

    Some leadership strategies are particularly important during extreme hardship. The following 5 dos and don’ts apply to leadership in general, but they are especially important right now.  Soft skills can be harder than anticipated when you yourself are struggling, and you may be asking more than your employees can give if you aren’t checking yourself. These 5 strategies will help. 

    1.         DO provide step-by-step instruction. DON’T content dump. 

    Mental exhaustion is a legitimate concern this far into…

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    The One Thing that Changed My Business Mindset about 2020 

    Shhh - don't tell. I'm ditching my goals right now. 

    Normally, my goals are a fun challenge, a game with myself in which I always win, even if I don't achieve them fully. Just the act of making them and reaching *for* them gets me closer to my long-term vision 

    Since the pandemic hit, I've been telling others to break their goals into smaller, more immediately time-sensitive chunks (and I’ve been doing that myself).  As 2020 has progressed, stress has been added upon stress, and I started seeing more…

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    3 Strategies to Consider before Implementing Dress Codes 

    I just read an article about how businesses considering mandating dress codes for remote workers, and my head almost exploded.  Here’s why… 

    Studies are showing that remote workers who are dressing down for work are showing dramatic decreases in productivity.  Management’s answer?  Mandate dress codes. 

    This is indicative of the type of culture that causes high attrition rates; this us-vs.-them philosophy is costing businesses their best people.

    Some people are as productive or even more so working from…

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    Divisive Politics and Workplace Culture 

    I posted a baby goat video on my personal FB page. 

    An acquaintance who is on the opposite end of the political spectrum commented, "We agree on very little. We agree on this." 

    This seemingly innocent comment made me realize two important things. 

    #1. I don't get political on my page. I intentionally don't post anything of an argumentative vein. I do openly support diversity, the arts, and science, which apparently offers insight into my politic leanings. Honestly though, neither one of us fully knows what

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    Leading in Uncertain Times 

    Are you or your team experiencing all-time high levels of anxiety and stress? 

    I wouldn’t be surprised.  These are unprecedented times.  

    An uncertain future is a breeding ground for anxiety.  Even a well-planned vision may not be enough to quench underlying stress and insecurity. All the well-intentioned time-management strategies or tools to manage overwhelm may only be scratching the surface. 

    This is a time when strong leadership is needed the most. 

    Use the following steps in my 4 Cs method for

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    Burnout Culture is Killing Productivity 

    If you think you or someone on your team is starting to get burnt out, it’s not a red flag.  It’s a warning siren.  When you’ve gotten to that point, productivity is already impacted long term.  

    Your burnout has probably already affected family and friends, not to mention one of your greatest assets, your relationship with yourself. 

    With the pandemic, the school year starting, a divisive election in the works, and racial inequality, it’s a banner season for stressors.  So why do we expect the same…

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    I would definitely recommend working with Nancy to help anyone feeling stuck and unable to move forward in their goals.

     

    Working with Nancy helped me overcome a significant block in my career concerning success.

     

    I felt a shift in my thinking from a limited mindset, always focusing on what things I had to be before considering myself a success, to a new space of accepting my successes as they appear and feeling more grateful for those.

     

    Elissa Nesheim

    Elissa Sue Watercolors