This week, I interviewed Nicola Brown, who is no stranger to juggling, as you can see.
Nicola Brown is a clinical psychologist, the healthy foodie behind NIBL (Nature’s Ingredients Brought to Life) and an efficiency coach. You can hear some fabulous tips from Nicola on this week’s radio show and download the podcast for later listening, if you’d like. I talk about developing a coach, rather than a critic on the show and do a guided visualisation to strengthen that inner coach, rather than critic.
I met with Nicola late last year and she gave me a piece of advice she gave me in relation to the posts I put on my professional Facebook page. which has made a phenomenal difference to me. Nicola suggested that each day have a theme so that I would save time trying to generate ideas. Thus, for example, every Monday, I try to post something about mindfulness, Tuesdays about thinking more productively, Wednesdays about pregnancy, etc. Nicola also had other tips, including measuring and saving results to look at trends. I’ve really found this advice about categorising useful. One of my strongest desires more recently has been to make the week predictable for myself and my sons. I really wanted each day and each week to have a rhythm. Of course, there are always things that come up and curve balls. However, having a structure means that things seem more predictable than not. When I worked in inpatient units, I used to have a saying – the more we are stressed or distressed the more we need structure.
“The more we are stressed or distressed, the more we need structure”
One of the foundational cognitive behavioural exercises in depression, for example, is to start looking at what someone does during a week (an activity schedule) and schedule in events that bring even the tiniest bit of pleasure, and then, mastery.
So…would categorising your week improve your focus? Here are some ideas for freeing up brain space:
- Have the same dinner on that day of the week – e.g., soup on Tuesdays. Alternatively, know that whatever you have for lunch will be what you have for dinner (or similar).
- Have a schedule for checking your emails (not first thing – hear Nicola about this :))
- Have a sense of what you will wear on certain days
- Put similar things together – e.g., Thursdays are your days for meetings
- Do your shopping on the same day of the week – if you run out of something before then, see if you can make do
Would any of these ideas make you more focussed? Can you apply categorising and compartmentalising to other areas of your life?