Interruption Management
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Interruption Management

Sunday, December 21, 2014

High Connection, Constant Interruption - Interruption Management

An article ten years ago today in USA Today said it all: “Personal computers, cellphones, and high-speed Internet are considered essential to getting by for millions of Americans who are showing early signs of addiction to the next wave of high-tech toys…”

The article went on to say that “many people… consider high-tech gadgetry essential to modern life,” and quoted psychologist Bob Greenfield who observed, "Part of the reason is the hype, the commercial selling of it. Some people feel the products will improve the quality of their lives. But do we really need to be connected in every way,  shape or form?"

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Strive for Understanding - Interruption Management

Lists of information management tips can leave me cold. The notion that merely following some set of guidelines without understanding the magnitude of the situation relegates any such list, however important, to the status of a temporary fix that will soon lose potency.

Understanding the "why" has an impact for those who are willing to make significant and lasting headway on the issue. It's no different than the U.S. response to fundamental Islamic terrorism; you have to get to the root of the issue terrorists groups can ever be quashed. Otherwise, you're continually attempting to put out brush fires as they appear. Consequently, there is no enduring list of "ten all-purpose ways" to fight terrorism.

Virtually every career professional has read at least one time management book and many articles, and all have encountered time management tips in list form. Yet virtually everyone remains continually
pressed for time. So, is the solution to retrieve one's list and apply it more diligently? Or would a more sound approach be to understand the pervasive nature of time pressure in our society, to take a big picture look at one's life and career, and begin  to creatively address situations? I would opt for the latter every time!

Still, we all like lists. Realistically, though, in five to seven days, most people will not even be able to *find* whatever list you give them, however valuable they regarded it at one time. It is better to strive to attain understanding of the issue than it is to add yet another list to the one's personal "collection."

The best of both worlds might be to strive for understanding, then apply some guidelines from a list.
Those who insist on a list (really a magic wand), in a few weeks hence, will be right back doing exactly what they've been doing, whereas those who tried to gain understanding will have the potential to achieve professional and personal breakthroughs!

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Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Everyday Distractions - Interruption Management

Vast segments of the population have turned to online exhibitionism. Writing in the Washington Post, economist Robert J. Samuelson observes five years ago, and the situation has gotten worse. “It turns out that the Internet has unleashed the greatest outburst of mass exhibitionism in human history.”

“People seem to crave popularity or celebrity more than they fear the loss of privacy.” However, “what goes on the Internet often stays on the Internet."

Of particular concern: Something that seems harmless, silly or merely impetuous today might seem offensive, stupid or reckless in two weeks, two years or two decades,” said Samuelson. “Henry David Thoreau famously remarked that ‘the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.’ Thanks to technology, that's no longer necessary. People can now lead lives of noisy and ostentatious desperation...”

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Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Your Knowledge, Your Benefit - Interruption Management

When you draw upon your own accumulated knowledge and the wisdom that you develop, you're able to intermittently free yourself from ever accelerating flows of information.

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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Check-up Now, Avoid Complication Later - Interruption Management

When you need specific information on a business or person, background checks can be done from $0 to $125 through:

* Credit bureaus

* County business records

* Marriage and divorce records

* Clipping services

* State and federal court records

* Bankruptcy court

* Municipal and county real estate deeds

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Saturday, November 15, 2014

Passwords Information as Needed - Interruption Management

If something happens to you tomorrow, would any family member or trusted friend be able to navigate your computer system, have login and password information, and help manage your accounts, or would there be a major interruption in your ability to transfer this information and wealth?

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Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Using Your Brain in Complex Times - Interruption Management

How to Think: Managing Brain Resources in an Age of Complexity by Ed Boyden in Technology Review is brilliant article, excerpted here:

"When I applied for my faculty job at the MIT Media Lab, I had to write a teaching statement. One of the things I proposed was to teach a class called "How to Think," which would focus on how to be creative, thoughtful, and powerful in a world where problems are extremely complex, targets are continuously moving, and our brains often seem like nodes of enormous networks that constantly reconfigure. In the process of thinking about this, I composed 10 rules...

1. Synthesize new ideas constantly. Never read passively. Annotate, model, think, and synthesize while you read...

2. Learn how to learn, rapidly... Be able to rapidly prototype ideas. Know how your brain works.

3. Work backward from your goal. Or else you may never get there...

4. Always have a long-term plan. Even if you change it every day...

5. Make contingency maps. Draw all the things you need to do on a big piece of paper, and find out which things depend on other things...

6. Collaborate.

7. Make your mistakes quickly... Document what led to the error so that you learn what to recognize, and then move on...

8. As you develop skills, write up best-practices protocols... Instinct-ualize conscious control.

9. Document everything obsessively. If you don't record it, it may never have an impact on the world..

10. Keep it simple... If you can spend two days thinking of ways to make it 10 times simpler,
do it...

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Jeff Davidson - Expert at Managing Interruption Overload

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Jeff Davidson: Bio

Managing Interruption Overload

Is the constant crushing burden of information and communication overload dragging you down, pulling you off course, and impeding your effectiveness? By the end of your workday, do you feel overworked, overwhelmed, stressed, and exhausted? Would you like to be more focused, productive, and competitive, while remaining balanced and in control?

If you're continually facing too many interruptions and too many demands, you need Breathing Space.


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