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Preview: The Art of Personal Productivity

Bubble Planner

“Man can alter his life by altering his thinking.” - William James

Updated: 2017-07-29T02:43:37.253-05:00


Productivity on Purpose


The 5 Step Personal Productivity System...

In today's world, life comes at you faster than ever. In the Daily Life Manager Series: Productivity on Purpose, Bubble Planner founder Bill Tyler shares the breakthrough techniques for stress-free, sustainable productivity. The Productivity System detailed in this book will work for you regardless of where you are starting your journey. You can learn to achieve effective productivity and unleash your creative potential.

In Productivity on Purpose, Tyler shows you how to:
  • Establish your baseline
  • Develop the right mindset
  • Say "No" when you need to and "Yes" when you want to
  • Compel yourself to action
  • Make productivity automatic
You will learn how to be effective in changing situations. Leave the feeling of being overwhelmed behind and feel the sweet peace that you have it all under control.

Start your journey today!

Buy the Kindle version on Amazon here: Daily Life Manager Series: Productivity on Purpose(image)

Law of Attraction | eBook


Learn the 4-Step process to Manifesting Your Dreams...Learn multiple ways to effortlessly double, triple, or even quadruple (or more) your productivity…and with no complicated gadgets or expensive training required.Buy NowYou have within you right now the power to create startling and powerful change, thereby, experiencing success like you never thought possible. However, a lack of knowledge and effective tools will hold you back from realizing your potential.The tools and strategies you’ll discover in the Daily Life Manager: Adding Action to the Law of Attraction will help build unstoppable momentum toward the life you desire and deserve. You will learn the amazing power of Ask and It Is Given and the role of Love in the Law of Attraction. You will also learn the ingredient most people miss in making the Law of Attraction work in a practical way.If you are committed to working toward attaining the life of your dreams, one that combines creativity, achievement, and purpose into one powerful force, you can trust that this book will provide the tools necessary to help get you there.Format: PDF DownloadOr buy the Kindle version on Amazon here: Daily Life Manager: Adding Action to the Law of AttractionBuy Now and Start Your Journey to a New You!Buy NowMore Images: [...]

PDF Planner Forms


The Bubble List Procrastination Meet Your Match!The Bubble Task Management Form pummels procrastination through the Power of Bubble Maps by tapping into your brain's right hemisphere, which is the creative part, and it retains all of the benefits of lists. The Bubble List will create the motivation and vision that you need to take ACTION. Quite simply, you will Unleash Your Potential.Buy NowThis list combines right-brain and left-brain into a powerful productivity tool. (pdf download - single user license)...Format: PDF DownloadBuy now to end procrastination today!Daily Spending Tracking FormBuy NowWhere Is Your Money Going?This idea was inspired by David Bach's bestseller, The Automatic Millionaire to help you keep track of your daily expenses with a weekly total so that you can find your own personal Latte Factor (this is a trademark of David Bach).Format: PDF DownloadSee folding instructions at now to start saving!Weekly Planner TemplateBuy NowBe More Productive with a Weekly Printable Planner TemplateThe Weekly Planner Template helps you organize everything on paper that needs to be done in the upcoming week. It also is flexible enough to use as a workflow tool to keep your week on track. This is a simple one page form that is easy to use and helps you stay in control the entire week.Calendar: The top section is a calendar where you map out your hard landscape. Anything that needs to be done at a certain time is placed in the appropriate time slot. Don't forget to make appointments with yourself for exercise, project completion, or even meditation.Goals/Projects - Define Next Actions: The bottom section is the big rocks in your life. Keep your vision before your eyes by identifying what you want to Be, Do, and Have and break them down into what you need to do. Identify the next physical action that needs to be done to move something forward. If you are using GTD, you may have lists like Calls, @Computer, @Office, @Home, or others. You may also use this section to write your daily "To Do's".Format: PDF DownloadWeekly Printable Planner Template Keeps You on TrackRemember, "if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail". This tool practically ensures your success.Buy now and start planning right away!Shopping List FormBuy NowDon't Forget Your Shopping List or Coupons!Have you ever been in the grocery store and knew that you forgetting something? This Shopping List Form is the ideal solution to ensure that you remember what you need from the grocery store.When you go to the food store empty handed, you end up buying a bunch of high calorie snacks that you don't need and spending way too much for them. Now, you can capture your menu ideas right in the kitchen (where you normally think of them) and take them with you. The design is simple, yet effective.Format: PDF Download (print and fold in half)Go ahead, add a Shopping List to your order today!Daily Task Management FormBuy NowThe Visual Approach to Daily Task Management...Engage Your Right Brain. Inspired by GTD, this Daily Task Management Form will help you organize your next actions into four simple contexts quickly and easily. Unlike a traditional to-do list, the Bubble Map design will prompt you to take action.Our exclusive CHOP filtering method will help you Discover what's really important.CHOP your tasks down to size.Computer ActionsHome ActionsOffice ActionsPhone CallsGetting to Done has never been easier.Format: PDF Download (print and fold in half)Do more with your day. Order Now![...]

Original Bubble DIY Planner | pdf


The Best Day Planner for Achieving Success...The Original Bubble Daily Planner now in downloadable form. The same great pages to help you manage your time so you can:get more things done each dayattain work-life balanceachieve more progress toward your goalsBuy NowEven if you're just starting out with your first planner, time management using Bubble Maps and smart goal setting make this one of the best day planners to help you better manage your schedule and be more productive at home, work, and on the go.It's okay to dream again!The Bubble Planner will give you an actionable plan to make your dreams become reality. This time management solution is directly aimed at helping you organize your daily activities, prioritize and manage your limited time to balance work-life commitments, and achieve your goals, whether personal, professional or both.This Daily Planner Works Like Sticky Notes on Your Desktop Instead of a Filing Cabinet that You Forget AboutFormat: 14 Unique forms in this 18 page eBook, 8.5" x 11" Paper Size (2 UP - 5.5" x 8.5" page size) pdf download | single user license - print as many times as you want for your own use. Since this is printed two to a page, it will require you to cut the pages in half to use. Be careful doing this. We recommend taking to a commercial printer to have this done. Here's how we communicate the print settings to our printer:Black Copies- 1 sheet 4/1 & 83 sheets 1/1 on 28# Laser 8.5x5.5. trim to size.Of course, the benefit to having your own files is that you can print only the pages you need, so, you should modify your instructions as appropriate.This version is truly for the do-it-yourself crowd since you'll need to print on both sides of the page (if you prefer), cut the pages in half, and punch holes.Order Now!Buy NowMore Images: [...]

Big Bubble DIY Planner Organizer | pdf


Big Problems Require Big Solutions...Are you feeling overwhelmed? If you feel like life is dragging you around by the nose, you are not alone. Technology, and the instant access and constant interruptions that go along with it, has changed the pace of life for everyone.Buy NowAlso, available in coil bound at the link below:Big Bubble Plann ...Bill Tyler$19.99So, how do you cope with the increasing demands on your time and energy? The key is to respond to the increasing demands with the right knowledge and tools. If you are not using a planner organizer, you are missing out on one of the secrets to all high achievers. If you are using a daily planner, are you using the one right for you?Most daily planners work like a file cabinet. You write items down in a list and store that list. Often, you forget about the list.By laying out your tasks like sticky notes on your desk, you tap into the hidden power of your short-term memory. Aristotle called this affinity for remembering things by location the Method of Loci.Your mind considers items on a linear list "filed away" for later reference.Discover what thousands of people already know - Bubble Maps help you make better decisions with the time you have. Format: 14 Unique forms in this 26 page eBook, 8.5" x 11" pdf download | single user license - print as many times as you want for your own use.Don't let your future slip through your fingers. The Big Bubble Planner Organizer is a visual planning tool that engages the right side of your brain that traditional planners are incapable of doing. When you bring the creative side of your brain into your daily organizing, you will become much more intuitive in your decision-making, thereby, gaining leverage and traction toward your dreams with less effort than you thought possible."I got my planner today and I love it!!!!! I teach at the local College and I think this will help me plan better for future projects. In fact, I'm going to have the college bookstore order some in for my students. It will work perfect for their final project."College Professor - P. ThielOrder Now and Start Creating Your Future Right Away!Buy NowAlso, available in coil bound at the link below:Big Bubble Plann ...Bill Tyler$19.99More Images: [...]

Work Family Balance Planner


Find Balance in Your Life...

Do you want to enjoy the life that you've worked so hard to create? In today's fast-paced world, with its overlapping priorities, information overload, and virtually unlimited options, you can easily find yourself led by impulse, stress, or convenience. Are you making the right decisions? Or are you being controlled, time after time, by the pressures of the moment?

An innovative new approach to decision making, the Work Family Balance Planner includes two creative forms that will help you reclaim your life. The forms are clear, creative, and action-oriented. Discover how using these forms reveal how much more you can accomplish when you engage your natural, creative potential.

Isn't it time to create your future on your terms?

Format: Adobe Acrobat PDF

Download Work Family Balance Forms Today!

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5 Reasons to Eat an Elephant


Are You Dreaming Big Enough?I'm sure you've heard the question, "how do you eat an elephant?". The answer is "one bite at a time". This is a striking metaphor for setting big goals. As one professional speaker likes to call them Big, Hairy, Audacious Goals (BHAGs). These are goals that are beyond stretch. They are miles past your current capabilities and even vision.Personally, I think there is great reason to argue whether you should set big goals or small, incremental goals. On the one hand, big goals stretch your thinking and give you great energy, or fuel, to push you beyond yourself. Getting yourself to take action is a critical step in change. On the other hand, small, incremental goals give you confidence to set more goals. In reality, these objectives are not mutually exclusive. In fact, they work together. First, set HUGE goals, then, set smaller goals that are in alignment with these goals or as some might say, DREAMS.What If I Fail?Initially, it seems like radical, crazy goals contradict the R in SMART goal setting. SMART is an acronym for Specific, Measurable, Action Oriented, Realistic, and Time Constrained. You may immediately dismiss a desire you have by saying to yourself that you could never achieve something that grand. However, think about all of the the people who have changed the world. Do you really think that Steve Jobs, who was given up for adoption, had any reason to believe that he could build a company that would bring the power of computer technology to the masses?You will never know your own limits until to test them. If you've never considered setting outrageous goals or you have moved away from them, consider the following 5 reasons to set bigger, mind-blowing goals:To create excitement. Big goals, day-dreaming, or even fantasizing will get you excited about your future. Imagine for a moment what your life would be like if you could do anything you wanted without your current restrictions of money supply, low energy, poor relationships, ignorance, or other barriers to what you really want. Big goals and dreams overcome the inertia created by a lack of willpower. Imagining how things could be will push you to take action. The higher the goal, the less likely you'll be distracted by self-pity or small hindrances.To breakthrough barriers. In the short-term, your options are somewhat limited by your past experience, current circumstances, and personal skills and abilities. However, in the longer term, your options are virtually unlimited. When you broaden your vision through bigger goals, you notice the things that are holding you back. You may have personal beliefs to change, skills to acquire, resources to accumulate, or networks to build. A bigger vision forces you to look at your through a telescope instead of a microscope; thereby, noticing the big adjustments you need to make to be who you really want to be.To Become more resilient. When your goals are really important, minor setbacks will not derail you. If all you have is small goals, it's easy to quit on them. However, if you set some big goals, somehow the smaller problems become less important. For example, when it comes to distractions, it's easier to say 'no' when you have a bigger 'yes' burning inside you. Big goals give you that bigger yes.To confront our shortcomings. Regardless of where you are on your personal journey, you still have weaknesses or deficiencies that you need to address. It's easy to let these slide if you're comfortable or happy with good enough or mediocre. However, if you've decided that your current state is not good enough and the next few incremental steps are not going to cut it either, you must take a hard look at your current bad habits, limiting beliefs, and meager performance. In short, you must take responsibility, personal responsibility, for your own success. This requires you to fix you.To develop sustainable behavior, i.e. habits. Big [...]

Daily Life Manager Free Resources


The Daily Life Manager Series suggests using different paper forms to assist with offloading your mental processing. Here are some of the forms that are included in the books. Feel free to download, print, and use for your own personal use.

Bubble Map / My List forms

Activity Log

Bubbles for Busy Women


You Can Form New Habits with This Daily Planner Organizer for Women...Discover how to gain control of your life and your schedule with this powerful daily organizer for women that engages your full potential thrusting you toward who you were meant to be.Discover your inherent worth, regardless of what others may say or do to make you doubt it.Express and own your sense of validityBring yourself under control and pass this knowledge forward to those who are important to youIt's time to find encouragement for yourself and experience a greater quality of life.This Daily Organizer for Women Taps into Your Hidden PotentialThis unique 162-page planner offers tools for both your right and left brains. The "bubble map" pages allow you to release your creativity and regain control of your future using mind-mapping (laying out your thoughts and intentions visually) in a truly intuitive way. These methods are then combined with the best time management techniques for organizing projects, long-term goals, calendar, and daily to-do's. Designed specifically for the busy woman.The Book Patch Coil bound version is 5.5 x 8.5.Amazon paperback is 6 x 9.I am in love with this planner, and happy that I will no longer have to write a million sticky notes and post everywhere!- Kimberly, Mom BloggerWith the Daily Planner Organizer for Women, it's okay to dream again.Buy today at this great, low price!Paperback frameborder="0" marginheight="0" marginwidth="0" scrolling="no" src="<1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr" style="height: 240px; width: 120px;">Coil BoundBubbles for Busy ...Bill Tyler$12.99More Images: [...]

Daily Planner Templates for Visual Thinkers


Are You a Visual Thinker? 

In a recent study, over 60% of the population preferred Visual to Sequential learning.

This is why many people are unable to use an electronic planner organizer effectively. The linear nature of task management software and list-based paper planners is contradictory to how most people think. After all, they were designed by engineers.

Why All Students Need Visual-Spatial Methods 
by Linda Kreger Silverman, Ph.D.

Like Sticky Notes on a Desktop

Since bubble maps are laid out like sticky notes on your desktop instead of a filing cabinet (like traditional planners), you are primed for action. As Aristotle discovered, your mind is designed to know “where” things are.

The spatial layout encourages you to take action and enhances your short-term memory. These features are why many people have found success with bubble maps when lists have failed them.

"I Love How The Bubble Planner Makes Me Think"

"I sincerely appreciate your time and the effort you have taken to send the bubble planner! I absolutely love how it makes me think about my life and the things that I want to BE and DO and HAVE. I am very excited to have the planner at the start of a new school year. I am sure the bubbles will help me become a more successful teacher this year!" - K. Watkinson, Teacher

How to Use the Bubble Planner


Have you ever wondered why some people are able to effortlessly stay organized while others struggle greatly? These organizing tips using the Bubble Daily Planner will provide you with the knowledge to stay in control even as the world around you isn't. One of the first tips is to look at time differently.Time goes, you say? Ah, no! alas, time stays, we go. - Henry Austin DobsonOrganizing Tip #1: Change Your Perspective about TimeNote: This tutorial will show you how to use the Original Bubble Daily Planner | Time Management Tool and the Big Bubble Planner Organizer. It will walk you through the different sections of the planners and provide great organizing tips throughout, so, even if you're not using the planner, you will find something to help you gain control of your time.The issue facing you today is not managing time. What’s at issue are the choices you make with the time you have. Choices are the currency that converts the present to the future. Since you have the ability to work anywhere or anytime getting things done faster ever imagined, these organizing tips will help you manage yourself differently to make the best choices for your future.To fulfill your purpose in life, you must know (create, define, and clarify) the following:What do you want to be?What do you want to do?What do you want to have?The key is to know these things at the precise moment of decision. In short, you need a time management tool that enables you to act at the speed of thought. The spatial design of the Bubble Planner allows you to organize your thoughts quickly. More than that, it actually behaves the way you think, which is in pictures translated into words. It moves beyond the linear limitations of traditional time management techniques such as task lists and taps into your brain's natural creative power.Organizing Tip #2: Engage Both Sides of Your BrainThe Bubble Planner combines powerful brainstorming techniques with life management principles. This combination recruits both the creative and logical sides of the brain. This tool allows you to capture ideas at the speed of thought and arrange them in pictures.As an illustration, let’s say that you want to invite the Hendersons out to dinner for a couple’s night out. Simply add a phone call action to today with the relevant information. Since it is a couple’s night out, you need someone to care for the kids. Draw a line to the next bubble as a reminder to call your babysitter if Bob and Tina accept.When you complete a task, you can either cross it out or highlight it(highlighting maintains readability). The Bubble Planner is intended to be flexible. There are many ways to do everything. The only limit is your imagination.SectionsThe Bubble Planner is segmented into six sections that all work together:1.     Radar2.     Roadmap3.     Rudder4.     Register5.     Renew6.     Review.The first three sections (Radar, Roadmap, and Rudder) are directional. They are designed to propel your life forward in the direction of your purpose. The fourth section (Register) is a placeholder for things that must be done on a specific day. While it may be used as a calendar, it is designed as a planning tool to ensure you accomplish your goals. The fifth section (Renew) increases your capacity for production. The final section (Review) captures items for later reference.Organizing Tip #3: Start with the Big Picture (Begin with the End in Mind)Radar - Goal SettingThe Radar section is a big picture view of your life. It is critical to start from this perspectiv[...]

Mind Mapping Basics


A creative alternative to an Outline is a Mind Map. Mind maps work the way the brain works, which is association-driven not linear. When you think of an idea, your thoughts and feelings around that idea may be in the thousands. Each thought may be linked to images, words, or even smells. A mind map helps you explore those linkages and reinforce the relationships that are supportive to your goals. Also, your mind generally thinks in concepts and images not complete sentences.Since a mind map is visual and shows the connections between key words and concepts, the information is stored in a way that makes it easier to recall later. Additionally, since a mind map starts from the center and works out, it opens avenue of thought that are closed off in an outline. You have freedom to consider more than the one previous thought written on the page. You will find that your mind guides the organization of the ideas rather than the structure of the outline; thereby, encouraging creativity.MIND MAPPING TIPSWhile mind mapping is very individual, here are some of tips that have been proven to work over time:Use just key words, or phrasesStart from the center of the page and work out.The center should be a general theme of the map. (I prefer to use a circle for the center theme).Create other centers for sub-themes. (I use squares for second level ideas).Use Print rather script as it makes them more readableIf it stands out on the page, it will stand out in your mind.Use arrows to show links between different elements.Explore what's hot in your mind, don't force ideas.Let your ideas flow. Don't judge the thought, just capture it.POPULAR USES OF MIND MAPSThink Creatively. Whenever you want to think "outside the box", mind maps can help. You will be amazed at how rapidly the new ideas flow. Every item on your mind map has the potential to generate another mind map.Take Notes. Mind maps help organize your notes and puts the ideas into context easily. This allows the information to be incorporated into your brain more easily. Use them to take notes for books, lectures, meetings, interviews, or even phone calls.Memorize. Mind maps are effective in storing new information in your brain in an optimum way for recall. The key words and concepts are appropriately organized into the proper context.Solve Problems. Mind maps show the relationships between items. Often, the solution to problems lies in resolving the connections between parts. By sharing a mind map with a co-worker or friend, you will be able to communicate issues the way you see them.Plan. Whether it's a complex project or a vacation, mind maps will enable you to put all of the relevant information down on paper. Then, it's a matter of organizing and connecting all of the mini-projects and assigning responsibility.[...]

Getting Things Done (GTD) with Purpose


I'll admit that I'm a fan of David Allen's Getting Things Done (GTD), however, I'm not a cheerleader.GTD addressed two bottlenecks in my own philosophy at the time of reading his first book several years ago. Since correcting these two flaws  in 2003, I have seen incredible improvements in productivity. His system gives you ability to respond, not react, to everything. GTD Secret #1 - Next ActionsThe first key advantage of GTD is the filtering system. Understanding concept of Next Actions was a watershed moment for me. By insisting that "stuff" be broken down into the very next physical action, you add clarity to your objectives and have a plan for achieving them. It offers a clear path "eating an elephant" whatever that goal, project, or objective the elephant represents for you. GTD Secret #2 - Group Next Actions by ContextIn conjunction with breaking projects down into the Next Actions, GTD also recommends grouping actions into categories, or in the proper terminology, contexts. For example, all of your phone calls would be one category, while actions that need to be done on the internet would be another. These different categories, or contexts, enable you to focus on things that can be done when you have time to do them. It also reduces the time spent managing your "To Do" list. Before GTD, my "Master Task List" managed me, not the other way around. As I'm a lefty, one of the first products that we developed was the Left Handed Personal Planner to implement some of the GTD components, specifically, contexts and next actions.The combination of breaking projects down into Next Actions and grouping them by context is a powerful combination to help you clarify what you need to do. Before GTD, my tasks had been ambiguous, which often caused procrastination. For example, my task "Weekly Spreadsheet" was really several tasks. My very next action should have been "Collect Source Data from Managers". With David's system, you do your thinking up front so you are free to implement whenever you want. Learning the GTD process is a little like learning to drive a car. It's an incredibly complex process with many variables; however, once you start doing it, your subconscious mind does most of the work.Don't get me wrong, even before GTD, I was well-versed in time management techniques from Day-Timer to 7 Habits, I had read everything I could get my hands on. However, this was the first real solution to procrastination that worked for me. I was an adrenaline seeking, deadline junkie.GTD Secret #3 - Create a Leak-Free SystemAnother critical bottleneck that GTD enabled me to correct was having a complete personal planner system. Having a complete system that prevents leaks is the only way for your mind to have confidence enough to let go of control. The Weekly Review gives you a chance to correct any flaws in your system every week and ensure there are no "open loops". The Left Handed Personal Day Planner uses a process called a weekly "Bubble Bath" that accomplishes this purpose. Essentially, everything that needs to be done is evaluated and addressed on a weekly basis. This ensures that you are not missing anything important. There are some things that come off of your "Bubble Maps" and some things that are added. In any case, you are making a conscious decision every week about what's important to you.GTD - The Missing Ingredient - Connecting PURPOSEWhile hard-core GTD cheerleaders will disagree on this point, it is my belief that the GTD system is ineffective in connecting dreams and visions to next actions. While it clearly talks about levels, i.e. 50,000 feet, there's not a defined path for taking something from a higher level and breaking it down to the runway. One t[...]

How to Develop the Proper Time Perspective


The power of your actions is limited to right now. That's not to say that the future and the past are not important (although for different reasons than you might expect); it's just that the present is the only place where you can DO anything. Let me illustrate the power of the present moment for just a second. Sometimes, in illustrations, it's useful to close your eyes and imagine. The Hourglass is the Classic Presentation of TimeInstead of having you close your eyes (since you can't read with your eyes closed), I've added a picture of an hourglass, so, save your visualization for this next part. Now, here's the interactive part - imagine that the top half of the hourglass represents the Future, the middle represents the Present moment, and the bottom represents the Past. I know it's really not hard to imagine this since this is what an hourglass does, but bear with me this is going somewhere.The middle of the hourglass narrows (we could also say concentrates its power) to allow just a few grains of sand to pass through at any given moment. The same is true with our lives. We convert the future to the past through the decisions that we make right now. In fact, only the decisions made in the present moment have any impact on our results. Don't get me wrong, the past and the future are critical in evaluating which decisions to make; however, an improper focus on either will prevent you from achieving your true purpose in life. Coincidentally, this is one of the reasons that day planners and organizers are more effective at managing time than history books and weather forecasts. How Incorrect Time Perspectives Affect YouToo Focused on the Past. Many people try to hold on to the decisions they have made in the past. This usually takes the form of unforgiveness. Not forgiving others can result in bitterness, while not forgiving ourselves can result in feelings of guilt. When we put too much focus on the past decisions, circumstances, or results of our lives, then the present moment gets clogged or constricted. Imagine that the grains of sand get wet and sticky causing them to clump together.By constricting the flow of decisions by holding onto feelings of bitterness or guilt, we can limit our future. Remember, the only way for the future to happen in the optimum way is for the sands to pass through the narrow opening. Focusing on the past can keep us from reaching our goals.You could say that guilt is rooted in condemnation. Either you condemn someone else or you condemn yourself. Which a simple dictionary search will show that condemnation is a result of judging yourself or others.Either way, these feelings can cause serious health problems. The connection of health to forgiveness is illustrated when Jesus said to the paralytic in Luke 5:23 "Which is easier: to say, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Get up and walk'?" Jesus in this example (and others) clearly removed judgment, which removed the affects of the condemnation. Modern medical literature says that at least 75% of all doctors' visits are stress related. Just Google "stress 75% doctor" and see tons of references to this fact. Many reference say as much as 85% are stress related. In any case, it's safe to say that stress is not good for your health. One major cause of stress is guilt. Another is anxiety, which leads us to the other incorrect time perspective.Too Focused on the Future. Focusing on the future in a negative way usually results in anxiety or worry. Both of these feelings are rooted in fear. Sometimes, people have such a fear of failure that they are unable to take action on anything. This causes the granules of sand seem to enlarge to such a degree that they are unable to fit through the n[...]

How to Avoid Procrastination with GTD


Wouldn't You Like to Turn the Clock Back?Getting Things Done (GTD), the productivity methodology designed by David Allen, increases your productivity by removing the noise from your thinking. You know the constant mental interruptions of your mind telling you that you should be doing something else, anything else, than what you're doing at the moment. Sometimes, it's so bad that it becomes nagging. How Do You Clear Your Mind of the Clutter?The key to having a clear mind is creating a reliable system that you can trust. When you have a trustworthy time management system, your mind will be free to focus on the task at hand, thereby, making you much more productive. Additionally, your stress level will diminish dramatically.While there are many aspects to GTD, one of the most important contributors to my own personal success is the idea of Next Action Lists. In today's dynamic society, known as the Attention Economy, simple 'to do' lists are not enough. If all you have is a structured plan, you won't have enough flexibility to optimize opportunites as they arise. Why Not Use a Master Task List?A List is fabulous for things that need to be done in order or to remember items of data. A list is primarily for storage and reference. A single list was never meant to be the instructions for your life. It is a tool to help you remember and find things when you need them. In fact, a list has several limitations.First, it is linear, which makes it likely that you will attempt to complete the items in order. Often, this is not the optimum priority.Second, one list for everything is overwhelming.Finally, a list without actions is a major cause of procrastination. By combining the feeling of being overwhelmed with a lack of discrete actions causes most people to freeze and choose to do nothing or nothing important.David Allen's solution to this is next action lists. Rather than plan out the day based on a simple all-in-one project list, you list the next-action items for tasks you have to do. These lists are segmented by context. Aristotle would have called this loci or physical location. Additionally, as the name implies, David Allen recommends identifying each item by the next specific physical action. This forces you to think in advance. Therefore, working the list frees your mind to focus on execution. This alone enables you to insert a higher level of excellence into your work. What's the Context?The next step in Getting Things Done, is to move these next-action's into separate lists based on physical locations. This is what he refers to as context. Here's a sample of my contexts:@Computer@Home@Office@PhoneIf you've used Bubble Planner Time Management Tools, you probably recognize these contexts as part of the CHOP method of organizing your next physical actions.So, back to the question, why should you have separate lists?Separate lists allow you to group your items together, which reduces the distraction time. The transition time between tasks is greatly reduced if the tasks are similar in nature. Transition time is expensive in both mental energy and opportunity cost.Additionally, separate lists allow you to locate what you need to do faster than a single list. It is a way for your mind to keep your life organized without expending significant mental energy.BONUS TIP: A way to supercharge your Next Action List is to lay them out spatially. One of the reasons that Aristotle taught The Method of Loci is that it works. People naturally organize their life around contexts, or their physical environment. Like the top of your desk, it is easier for our minds to maintain control when we organize in a visual-spatial manner rather than linear. Linear i[...]

Bubble Boy for President!


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By Scrubbing Bubbles

LOS ANGELES, CA -- "In America we celebrate the virtues of the quiet hero; the one who does his duty without complaint or expectation of praise; the one who listens closely for the call of his country, and when she calls, he answers without reservation, not for fame or reward, but for love. He loves his country. Tonight, my friends, we come to celebrate such a hero, and bestow upon him the greatest honor our Party is empowered to grant -- our nomination for President of the United States.

"But our purpose is not only to give tribute, though a fitting tribute it is. Our purpose is much larger than that. Our purpose is our country's greatness which we mean to preserve by offering to this nation the leadership of the one created by Bubble Planner, makers of Organizers Planners that are Different.

"Tonight we ask Bubble Boy to answer his country's call, not for his sake, but for ours; not for his glory, but for the dreams we dream for our children, and for the dreams they will dream for theirs.

"We nominate Bubble Boy for President because he is a Cartoon of honor, a Cartoon of firm purpose and deep commitment to his country's cause. We nominate Bubble Boy for President because we will not take our leave of this century without affirming to the world that America -- blessed, bountiful, beautiful America -- will remain what she has always been the last best hope of earth.

(image) Scrubbing Bubbles is the spokesperson for the Political Action Committee for Mostly Animated Nominees (PACMAN). This political ad was paid for by no one. It was posted for free without anyone's permission. In fact, most of it was plagiarized. The characters, Cartoon or otherwise, represented in this Press Release are fictional and not authorized for use, not even on this site. No Planners Organizers were harmed in the making of this press release.

Three Steps to Smarter Goals


In the Big Bubble Organizer Planner Template, the Radar section is a big picture view of your life. It is critical to start from this perspective as it answers the question, “what do you want to be, do, and have?”Step One: Write down goal setting ideas in the major categories of your life.What are your major life categories? There is a great acronym that captures these. It's called the FISHES:FamilyIntellectualSocialHealthEconomicSpiritual. Use these as goal setting categories. The best way to clarify what you want is to spend time brainstorming what you want to be, do, and have in a focused direction. The FISHES goal categories is great method to provide that direction.When you are setting goals, it's okay to dream. Also, when brainstorming, you should write down everything without filtering. Whether the goals are achievable or not will be determined in a later step.Step Two: Complete a goal setting worksheet page for the most important goals.Goal Worksheet from Big Bubble PlannerAfter writing down all of your goals, select the most important goal from each category and complete a Future Reality (see the Big Bubble Organizer Planner Template) page. This page clarifies your goals. The clearer the goal, the faster the manifestation. Here are the parts to the page:What: Be as specific and detailed as possible. What is the end result? Add details, texture, sound, smells, feelings, or anything else that will bring the goal to life.Start and Due Dates: Even if you change it later, setting a date is essential for creating a future reality.Why: Each goal must have a reason. The best reasons extend beyond ourselves. For example, if you set a goal to lose weight, a reason may be to improve your health so that you will be there for your children and your children’s children.Why Not: What are the barriers to achieving your goals? Often the reason that you don’t achieve your goals is fear. FEAR is False Evidence Appearing Real. If you give the fear a name, then you are in a position to address it.SMART?: SMART is a checklist to determine if your goal is a good goal. To be an achievable goal that moves you closer to what you want to be, do, and have, your goals should be:SpecificMeasurableAction OrientedRealisticTime ConstrainedStep Three: Take action every day.It's quite an accomplishment to even think about and write down what you want in the form of goals. In fact, 97% of the entire population doesn't even do that. Now, to ensure your goals become a reality, it is necessary to take action on your goals every day. Even if that action is just looking at your goal and imagining what it would be like to achieve it.We have Organizers Planners designed with smart goal setting built into the design.[...]

The Secret of Highly Productive People


Getting into Flow
"Laziness brings on deep sleep, and the shiftless man goes hungry." (Proverbs 19:15)

There is one characteristic among highly productive people that is so common that you would think that it is common sense. However, in my experience common sense, though once prevalent in our society, is no longer widespread. The characteristic that I’m mentioning is “action orientation”. In other words, they tend to take action towards their dreams, goals, and objectives. This is a truth that is stated plainly in the Bible, “All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty.” (Proverbs 14:23)

Go To Work
The average person wastes time at the water cooler, surfing the web, and working on low value tasks. The highly productive person, however, thinks, plans, prioritizes, and gets to work. You will know their mindset even from the language that they use. While many people will talk endlessly about “why” something can’t be done, the high achiever will ask “how” something can be done. The presumption for a highly productive person is that they will be successful. The average person is looking for a way to fail, blame someone else, or let off the hook.

Getting into "Flow"
Brian Tracy talks about an awesome mental state that you can enter called “flow”. This is when you work on high value tasks quickly, continuously, and almost effortlessly. It is the highest level of performance and productivity known to man. It is marked by a feeling of elation and clarity. You feel energized, happy, and calm all at the same time, and the results of your effort are superb and accurate.

How do you get into "flow"?
Step 1: Develop a Heightened Sense of Urgency – By cultivating a habit of doing things quickly, you will start to develop a desire to get things going and keep them going until they are completed. Having a sense of urgency is one way to trigger “flow”.

Step 2: Create a "Tendency for Action" – Increasing your sense of urgency is an important first step in changing your tendency from inaction to action. You must stop talking and start doing more often. Here are two quick ways to start creating this tendency. First, when you feel yourself being lazy, say out loud quickly, “Do it NOW!, Do it NOW!, Do it NOW!” You may even want to stand up abruptly or clap your hands. The key is to break your pattern (yes, laziness is a pattern). Second, break down the most important task on your list to the very next physical action that needs to be done and do it immediately. One of the major reasons that people procrastinate is that they feel overwhelmed. If you change your mindset from, “I have so much to do,” to “what is my next action”, you will break your procrastination habit.

So, now that you know the secret, what are you going to do about it?

The Fulcrum Principle


If you want to grow beyond your current state of existence, you will need to learn The Fulcrum Principle. A fulcrum is the pivot point for a lever. Thus, if you want to properly use leverage, then, you will need to place the fulcrum in the proper place.

If you apply this to your current state, your fulcrum is where it is based on your knowledge, skills, and ability. the levers that you use (or the resources that you apply) are dependent upon these factors. If you want to use more leverage, then, you will need more of one of these to effectively apply leverage.

As an example, let's look at a manager. A manager has learned to do work through others. An effective manager has learned the proper knowledge, skills, and ability to manage employees. The level of each of these factors determines both the success at the current level and whether that manager can handle more employees. This ability affects the amount of money that manager makes and can make.

So, to move your fulcrum (thereby increasing your capacity to use leverage), you must acquire one or more of these factors. Knowledge is also known as relevant information. Skills are the activity knowledge or know how. Ability is the capacity to perform. In any endeavor, you must have all three to be effective. Your level of effectiveness will be limited if you are lacking in any of these three.

To apply The Fulcrum Principle, do this. First, assess where you are. Second, determine what information you need to acquire. Third, find out how to apply the information to your specific situations. Finally, practice applying the know how; thereby, improving your capability. By focusing on moving the fulcrum, you will be amazed at the benefits and opportunities that you will begin to see in your life.

Setting Your Baseline: Where Do You Spend Your Time?


"Time is money."-Benjamin Franklin, Advice to a Young TradesmanTime is probably the most precious resource that a successful person has. The President of a company that I worked for many years ago told me that the secret to resolving a customer service issue was to work your way up to a person in the company with more money than time.Be sure to read this article until the end because I have a never before revealed secret formula for how much productive time you should have each day.If you don’t know where you are spending your time, you are wasting money. One of the most profitable skills that I learned in my first job after college was tracking my time in 15 minute increments. I was working as a staff accountant for a local CPA firm and had to account for all of my time. If I didn’t track my time, then I didn’t get paid. In addition to tracking my time, the majority of my time had to be billable. This exercise taught me to be aware of where I was spending my time and to focus on activities that generated profit for the firm. In subsequent industry jobs, I realized that this skill gave me a significant competitive advantage. While others were engaging in “water cooler” conversations, I was getting recognized and promoted. ROSE-COLORED MEMORYOne of the main reasons that we should write things down is because memory is a poor model of reality. This is true for a variety of reasons, here's three:First, we all have a bias. Our memories must go through the prism of our experience before they are stored in our brains.Second, many of us have a tendency to remember things in a positive light, especially our contribution to something. Psychologists call this an ego-centric bias. We believe that we are far more focused and productive than we really are.Finally, our memories fade over time. In some cases, they change entirely as our new experiences and changing beliefs attach different meanings to them. THE CURRENCY OF TIME"Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you."-Carl Sandburg Time is the great equalizer. I had a wonderfully wise teacher in high school who would rebuke anyone coming to class late with this saying, “time, and time alone, waits for no man, and dang few women.” It’s a sobering thought when you consider that everyone has the same amount of time in each day, week, and year. Michael Korda, former Editor-in-Chief of Simon & Schuster in New York City once said, "Success has always been easy to measure. It is the distance between one's origins and one's final achievement."The idea that we all have the same amount of time can be very humbling. This fact made an indelible impact on me in college while watching Andre Agassi at Wimbledon. Although he was only about a year older than me, he had already achieved unbelievable success. He had achieved wealth, fame, and numerous tennis titles. I would say that he spent his time wisely during his youth.How are you going to spend your time? Isn’t this an interesting phrase, “spend your time”? What accomplishments are you exchanging for your time? Are you wasting your time or investing your time?Unlike virtually every other resource on the planet, time is irreplaceable. For example, if an employee leaves your company, you can hire another employee to replace them. By the same token, if you lose a customer, you can find another one. On the other hand, if you waste an hour watching television [...]

When It Comes to Goals, Start Small


Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin, to see the plumb line in Zerubbabel’s hand. - Zechariah 4 (New Living Translation)
January first is the start of disappointment for many people. There have been many years that I've started the year with the best intentions, the most incredible resolutions, only to abandon them in a couple of days, weeks, or months. Whether it was the year that I was going to lose 20 pounds in 4 weeks or make a million dollars in one year, I have have watched in frustration as these dreams slip through my fingers.

Smart Goal Setting Requires Bite-Sized Pieces

It doesn't have to be this way. It's not that my resolutions were bad. In fact, they were great LONG-TERM goals. It's certainly possible for me to lose 20 pounds, just not in 4 weeks. It's also possible for me to make $1 million dollars in one year. However, there are many steps prior to achieving this goal, like making half a million in a year. So, these grand plans were not SMART goals.

January is a Great Time to Set Goals

I've heard many self help gurus say that new years' resolutions are a complete waste of time. I humbly disagree. The problem with goals on January first is not really a problem at all. In fact, if you listen carefully to your heart during this time of year, you will discover your dreams. The key is to break these dreams down into achievable goals. If a goal is not achievable, then it actually moves you further away from your dreams not closer to them. When you stretch and fall short, you've made progress. However, when you set an impossible target and give up, you have limited your future.

Be Honest with Yourself

There is an art to setting goals that require you to stretch (even to your maximum capacity) without stretching so far that you break your will. You know yourself better than anyone. This is both good and bad. In some ways, you will limit your expectations because you have been unable to achieve great goals in the past. In other ways, however, you know within your heart whether you are stretching or staying in your comfort zone. Knowing the right amount to stretch and the time period required to make this goal a reality will require creativity, determination, and courage. Most of all, it will require you to listen to that still small voice deep inside and to follow your heart.

Action Steps:
* Take one of your dreams and set a realistic goal that you can achieve in one week or less
* Make achieving this goal a priority
* Once you have achieved this goal, set another achievable goal
* Repeat the above three steps four weeks in a row

One other thing you should consider is buying a Smart Goal Setting Planner.

Be Thankful for What You've Got


(image) If you open your eyes and look around, you have a choice about what you see. You may think that you don't. In fact, many people say that what's there is there and you may as well face it. Is that a fact? If you were about town today, you most likely say cars of all makes and models. You probably saw hundreds of Hondas, if you live in a city, dozens of volkswagens, and probably a few high-end sports cars.

Now, how many of those brands did you notice? If you're currently considering buying a car or if you just bought a car, you probably noticed the brands that you want to buy. Yet, those cars were in your environment for weeks, months, or even years. Some experts call this activating your reticular cortex, others call it focus. Whatever you want to call it, you have the potential within you right now to decide, or choose, what you want to focus on in your surroundings. Furthermore, you have the ability to place meaning on those items.

Given that you agree that you can see what you want to see, why not see the best? Why not be thankful for the good things in your life. Many people believe that there is a law that says that what you focus on expands. Whether this is fact or not depends on your perspective. One thing for certain, though, is that paying attention to something makes it important to you. This is similar to courtship. Even the act of ignoring is deliberately paying attention to a potential mate and illustrating a desire to attract them to you.

By being thankful for the good things in your life, you give them the right to be there. You are giving them permission to be in your life. Additionally, you are inviting more things that are similar to appear (or at least for you to notice them). When more things are around you that you like, you will be happier. By focusing on the good things, you will truly appreciate your life. Try focusing on only the things that you want in your life and see what a difference it makes.

Be Yourself



How do you see yourself? Do you see yourself through your own eyes or through the opinions of others? One of the most destructive habits that you can have is to measure yourself against the expectation of others. If you do this, you will ride a roller coaster that will cause undue stress in your life. When people think you are the best thing in the world, you will experience a feeling of euphoria; however, that feeling will be dependent upon their views, which are out of your control.

To establish a firm foundation, it's important for you to establish your own image of yourself. Your image may be dependent upon values and qualities that you see in others, but they shouldn't be the ruler by which you measure yourself. The opinions of other people change frequently and are formed on a variety of variables, which are colored by a myriad of biases. Given this shifting basis, the only opinion that should matter to you is your own values, your own integrity.

An example of someone who lived by their own values is Mahatma Gandhi. This is a man that changed the world so much so that in India, he is considered the Father of the Nation. it may surprise you that such a powerful man died owning only a pair of glasses, a pair of sandals, a few clothes, a spinning wheel, and a book. Yet, it can be reasonably argued that he lived one of the richest lives ever.

It's certainly not wrong to pursue material riches; however, true riches are fulfilling your life's purpose. Look within yourself and discover what you were meant to become. Like a caterpillar can become nothing other than a butterfly, you should seek to transform your outer self and environment to the inner image of who you truly are.

Look Back to Move Forward


This may sound a little contradictory, but did you realize that it is necessary to look at your past before you can create your future? While you are not to be controlled by your past, it is essential that you learn from it.

It's been said that if you don't know history, that you will repeat it. This is great if you like your history and where you've been; however, if you don't like your past, then, you will need to change what you did.

Take Inventory
How do you learn from your past? The first step is to study it. In simplest terms, you want to find out what worked for you and what didn't. So, you need to make two lists. The first list is all of your successes. Don't filter yourself during this step. No matter how trivial the success may seem, write it on the list. Once you have recorded as many as come to mind, then write beside it some key drivers for these successes. Some examples may be perseverance, creativity, hard work, etc.

Now, make a second list of your failures. Go through the same exercise that you did with your successes. The causes for your failures may be something like not prepared, fearful, insecure, gave up, etc. The important thing for both of these lists is to be as objective as possible. You want to understand your root tendencies for both success and failure. Once you understand the patterns, then, you can take steps to minimize your weaknesses and maximize your strengths.

Discover Your Passion


This past weekend, my wife and I were invited to watch a friend of ours in a high school production of "My Fair Lady". We gladly accepted as we know that Caitlan is very talented in both acting and singing. We were also interested since both of us were in our high school version (we'll just say several years ago) of the same play, except we called it "Pygmalion", and our accents could be described more as "hick" than "cockney".

We were simply amazed at how many talented actors there were in this play. Also, the production itself was exceptional. There was an orchestra, the costumes were authentic, and the singing was better than what I've seen on American Idol. Somewhere in the middle of this grand production, I contemplated how important it is to determine and develop your talents.

What are you good at? It is obvious that Caitlan is gifted in performing. She commands attention when she is on stage. Additionally, she has an incredible singing voice. It is equally obvious that I'm not gifted in acting and singing. However, I am gifted in other things.

Where should you focus? I could spend years developing my non-talent of singing and become, at best, average. In any case, I would never even come close to the level that Caitlan has already attained. If she desires, she could spend years and build a career on this talent.

For me, I could spend the same years developing my organizational ability (which is a gift of mine) or my speaking ability (another gift) and build a rewarding career. This would give me the best opportunity to be the best in a field. Additionally, I would enjoy this career path. For the most part, I find that I have a passion for activities in which I excel.

What do I do now? Although there are things that we simply must do in life, most of our activities are a matter of choice. If you will choose things that line up with your strengths, you will discover a desire, a burning desire, stronger than you ever imagined.

To ensure that I'm making the best choices at any given moment, I rely on my Bubble Planner. This system enables me to capture my passions and prompts me to take action to develop my talents.