Do you suffer from burnout, low energy and loss of focus? Did you realize that you can implement small, micro actions that will increase your energy and focus throughout the day?
Contrary to what most people believe multitasking is not the answer. People are exhausted as a result of trying to multitask. I thought one of the really good examples in the book is when one of the ladies was told that her chances for promotion were limited because of her tendency to do too many things. She was perceived as a worker and not a strategic thinker.
I have been a big supporter of writing things down and notetaking since I’ve been using the seven minute difference planner. The authors refer to this as Offload ReFocus. There is research that explains the benefits of notetaking which is why we see people who feel the need to draw on the whiteboard or take notes as they’re talking. This helps them to think better and more creatively. There are also benefits of your brain knowing that you have stuff in one place. Your mind does not have to worry about trying to remember it.
In Decision Refocus, the authors discuss the phenomenon of decision fatigue and how our ability to make good decisions can be impacted throughout the day. The example that doctors prescribed more medicine later in the day than they did in the morning due to decision fatigue was shocking. They present tips that help improve your decision-making by viewing scenes of nature, stopping for short periods of rest, and increasing glucose levels. In addition, make decisions early in the morning and pay attention to your decision fatigue and of those around you. Simplify your office and your routines wherever possible so that it requires fewer decisions. I’ve even heard people talking about reducing their wardrobe so there were fewer decisions about what to wear in the morning. They also encourage you to train people on your team to make decisions. This helps you make fewer decisions and empowers them to make more decisions which increase their decision-making ability.
In Exercise refocus, they talk about the fact that walking and exercise can increase creativity. It didn’t matter if the walking was on a treadmill or outside on a beautiful day. Exercise generated improvement in thinking skills to include faster mental processes, enhance memory storage and retrieval and increased creative thinking. So last week when I made the decision not to run before work because I had an important meeting that day was not a good decision. I would have been more clear headed if I had ran. Now we know we should make a point to exercise on the days we need our brain power the most. However don’t overdo it if you push yourself to the point of exhaustion that can hinder your brain power. They also recommend developing exercises that you can do in your office throughout the day.
Chapter 3 is about resetting your primitive alarms: stop your emotions from being hijacked. They talk about the excruciating toil on your energy, focus, and health that worry has. The stress hormones from worrying can suppress your immune system, change your muscles, and put you on edge. You suffer from the same signs of dealing with a crisis even though one never existed, except in your mind.
Conscious relaxation reset. One of the Tips is learning how to breathe from your diaphragm. This is the third book I’ve read lately that’s talked about how important breathing is to our overall health both mental and physical. We should really take this seriously. There’s also smells that can help you relax; for example cinnamon, vanilla, and nutmeg. However each person may have their own scents that help relax them. For some people music will relax them. The key is to learn what your relaxing triggers are so that you can be prepared to utilize them when needed.
Power pose reset. Many people have talked about the Ted talk around power poses and body language.
Reframe your attitude and spiral into the positive.
Joy kit Reframe – Some of the tips are having a kit of things that will help put you into a more positive frame of mind. For each person that will look a little differently; whether it’s crazy cat pictures or memorabilia from your favorite vacation. Learn what helps put you in a better frame of mind and be prepared to pull it out when needed.
In Daily Reframe they suggested making a list daily of three things you’re grateful for and writing three emails to people who have done good things for you and telling them why you appreciate them.
Refresh your body provided tips on making sure you have good hydration and making sure that your blood sugar stays consistent. A recommendation is to carry food with you which is something I have a habit of doing.
They have a chapter on purpose and the “detective questions” to ask yourself to help you align with your purpose if you are not sure what it is. When you know your purpose, then the challenge is to look at how you spend your time and does it align with your purpose. Start eliminating things that don’t align with your purpose.
There’s a great appendix and checklist in the back that are very helpful because they summarize the tips in the chapters. You don’t have to work on everything at one time; pick out the thing you’d like to focus on first and then as you start to see improvement you can move onto another one. The appendix is a great place to reference back when you want a refresher for your next area to improve on.
This is my review of Micro Resilience by Bonnie St. John and Allen P. Haines. They mentioned that with today’s workforce we need more people skills and conceptual skills than ever before. This requires resilience and the book offers practical tips that any of us can incorporate into our lives.