A Solid Productivity Tip from the 1980’s

Do you remember when you were a kid and your 1980’s Nintendo started freaking out for some unknown reason.  You would just hit that reset button multiple times until it finally worked out its kinks.  That’s exactly what I needed, a reset. 

I started this morning on the wrong page.

I logged in to my January sales numbers and was not excited by what I saw.  Effort and sales were not matching my expectations.  It made me freeze up.  It made me question myself.  It started a negative reel in my head.  And negative thinking is a slippery slope.  It breeds self doubt.

After an hour I noticed I was sitting in the same spot, getting no where, just feeling worse than before.  Do you remember when you were a kid and your 1980’s Nintendo started freaking out for some unknown reason.  You would just hit that reset button multiple times until it finally worked out its kinks.  That’s exactly what I needed, a reset.

old school nintendo
Neil Godwin | GamesMaster Magazine | Getty Images

So I finally pulled my butt out of the desk chair, got away from my computer, and decided to actively participate in a reset with an easy fifteen minute workout.

Here are some “resets” that typically work well…

Positve Thinking tip

A Workout:  Sometimes this means a really good sweat session if time allows.  Other times it means getting away from the screen and just committing to moving.  When I used to work in an office this would often take shape in a walk around the complex to clear my head.  Now that I work from home, it often means walking the dog, or grabbing the pair of 10 lb. weights I keep in my office and setting my phone timer for 15 minutes.  Other times it is just stretching.  Ideas seem to come to me more clearly when my body is active.

Ideas On A Page:  Walk away from the computer and go old school (as old school as that 1980’s Nintendo I referenced).  Grab PAPER and a PEN.  Weird, I know.  Spend five minutes jotting down a list of all the things you could do next to get to your big goal (Your sales quota, the next meeting you are trying to get, the blog traffic goal you set, the promotion you are going after).  All ideas are fair game.  After the five minutes are up, reread your list.  What is the ONE THING on that list that will have the biggest impact on reaching that big goal in the long run?  You know which one it is, even if it’s not the one you feel like doing.  That’s the one you must do next.  Stop rereading the list looking for an out.  Get to work on THE ONE.

Gratitude:  When I seriously can’t get a grip on my negative thoughts, I have to force myself to pause and think of somethings I am grateful for.   This morning my list included:  I get to work from home right now, my efforts today will continue to pay off in the future in ways I cannot see yet, and that I live in a place where “winter” means sixty degree weather on a rough day.  Gratitude can also manifest in what we do for others.  Pause your negative track long enough to write someone an encouraging note, or grab a coffee for your childcare provider, and see how you feel afterwards!

My fifteen minute workout actually ended up being a five minute workout and a ten minute dance party.  My dog told me I looked ridiculous.  And I did.  But I was also in a much better head space by the time I finished.

It might be hard to start a full on dance party at the office, but one of these other tips should do the trick to reset your thinking.

Otherwise a conga line is always worth a try.