I’ve heard it many times from really successful managers. “We’re doing improvement, we’re just not documenting it.” My eyebrows always raise a bit when I hear this particular phrase. That’s […]
School is about to go back here in New Zealand and our family has been discussing covering exercise books. Now I hate covering exercise books with a passion. I’m sure […]
How are you going with living your intentions so far this year? As usual, I’ve been struggling a bit as I continue to adjust from being on holiday to living […]
As part of my intentional living plan this year I am working on building some better habits. Now I’m not a huge fan of exercise. Mostly because it’s hard, uncomfortable […]
As I emerge from the fog of a couple of weeks of not thinking about anything more stressful than making it to the airport on time or ensuring that everyone got enough helpings of Christmas cake, my mind is moving back into the planning stage of re-establishing my routine for the next few months.
As the end of the year looms, I’m beginning to think about catching up with my intentions for 2018 and recommitting or re-evaluating these for 2019. Today I came across […]
Recently I was going through some old phone photos and videos. They were from a few years ago when my younger daughter was still a toddler. Taken in our old, […]
The pursuit of perfection in systems and processes has been the key theme of my career for twenty years. Now I’ve read a ton of books, lean books, theory of constraint books, books about how to combine theory of constraints and lean and don’t even get me started on books about six sigma. But earlier in my career I found that not one of those books gave me any pointers on how to move a company from one state to another in terms of culture, or how to create momentum. For sure, I knew about Value Stream Mapping, PDCA cycles and Just in Time but what I was lacking was the secret formula to making lean or any other methodology really work.
As we have gotten closer and closer to the end of the first stage, our team has started talking about what happens next and which areas of the process will be worked on next. The resulting plan is so exciting that we all feel like something wonderful is just around the corner.
I think the real lesson I’ve learned this year is that despite the obstacles, the chaos and the general randomness of life, attempting to live intentionally creates a solid, reassuring theme through it all.
For years before I started to pursue minimalism as a way of life I was a champion organised hoarder. I could satisfy my need to be on top of things by making sure that everything was labelled or in it's assigned container. Whole days were spent putting things in order when it all got out of hand, which of course it always does when you live with someone else who has better things to do than keep everything just so.
Earlier this year I wrote a post about managing workplace clutter and my own personal quest for a minimal ‘lean’ workspace. At the time, I wasn’t sure how easy my seriously pared down workspace was going to work out. Would I be buried under clutter a few months later, or constantly frustrated by having nowhere to put anything?
With a full time job and two kids, combined with the usual share of winter ailments, life is full of distractions and diversions that pull me away from focusing on actions that will move me further down the path I want to follow.
Change often comes with discomfort, even change for the better. Our minds are comfortable with the status quo and reluctant to forge ahead into known obstacles and discomfort. If we focus on WHY we want to change and fix our gaze to the horizon where our ambitions hover, we can see that discomfort is merely a necessary part of following the path to true north.
We’ve all seen beautiful images of minimalist interiors; white, aesthetically stark, peaceful and beautiful are all words that might come to mind and are examples of what many think is the minimalist ideal. Often these ideals are architectural marvels of design, outside the wildest dreams and reach of the average homeowner. However, minimalist living is more than an aesthetic, it's a mindset. While some minimalists do pursue a simple, clean, zen look in their homes, many do not. Painting all your walls white is not a free ticket to a minimalist lifestyle. My house is full of kids, pets and general chaos, yet we would happily say that we are pursuing minimalism as a family lifestyle.
No one’s going to buy an improvement program just because a version of it works for someone else. Here lies the misconception. If someone has to sell you an improvement program, you’re probably not ready for it.
We can quickly find ourselves slipping from a position of motivation when the going gets rough. Like many others I’m sure, I find inspiration in reading just one more blog or researching just one more cutting edge idea. Unfortunately, putting awesome information into my brain does not directly result in putting one foot in front of the other when it comes to getting off the couch and getting active.