Do It Myself Blog – Glenda Watson Hyatt

Motivational Speaker

How Will You Use Your Extra Day?

Filed under: Motivation — by Glenda at 1:47 pm on Tuesday, February 28, 2012

A counterclockwise clockWe all crave more of it, demand more from it…

Time!

No matter what we do, there never seems to be quite enough.

But…there is good news.

Once every four years February has a Leap Day, an extra day – an extra  24 hours, 1440 minutes or 86,400 seconds – for us to use what ever way we choose.

How will you use your gift of  this extra day?

Might it be finally making that long-delayed phone call? Or surprising your loved one with an impromptu picnic – outdoors or not? Or unplugging for the entire evening to give your kids- two-legged or four – your undivided attention?

What would make February 29th special for you so when you lay your head on your pillow on Wednesday night, you will say, “Thank you for today. It was a true gift of time.”

If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

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iPad as a Second Screen Increases Typing Flow for Left Thumb Blogger

Filed under: 4-Hour Workday — by Glenda at 4:32 pm on Monday, February 20, 2012

My left thumb typing on a silicon keyboard Typing with only my left thumb is slow; painfully so when my mind is racing.

Using the WordQ software for word prediction and completion saves me keystrokes. A box with numbered words are suggested dynamically as I type; To finish typing a word, I type the corresponding number.

However, needing to be constantly changing my eye focus from the keyboard up to the word prediction box on my computer screen and then back to my keyboard hampers my typing flow.

word-prediction-box

When I am in my writing groove, I either keep typing and lose the benefit of having word prediction or I constantly look up at the word prediction box and lose the flow of words.

Enter the iPad as a second screen…

Using the free DisplayLink app and our home wireless network, my iPad quickly becomes a second computer screen. I then drag the word prediction box over to the second screen and place the iPad on my lap, within the same view as my keyboard.

Word prediction box on iPad on my lap

To change positions when needed, I prop up my iPad in front of my keyboard. All that I am moving – besides my left arm and thumb – are my eyeballs. It saves moving my head up and down.

iPad on desk as a second screen

Some professionals might say this is ergonomically compromising; but, hey, so is the way I type with my left thumb, which I have be doing for forty years with minimal ill effects.

i can even drag the document I am working on over to the iPad to view everything at once; saving me from looking up at my computer screen at all.

When I am working on a writing task, I am finding that having my word prediction box close to my keyboard increases my flow and, perhaps, even my typing speed. I am also sensing it is increasing my focus because I am on looking at my keyboard and my word box; the other distractions aren’t constantly in my face, tempting me.

If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

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The 4-Hour Work Day: A Work in Progress But Looks Promising

Filed under: 4-Hour Workday — by Glenda at 8:13 pm on Thursday, February 9, 2012

A large mug of mocha(Photo credit: Darrell Hyatt)

Feeling drained, tired, unmotivated for months – no amount of dark chocolate or extra large mochas helped for long – led me to implement the 4-hour work day at the beginning of 2012 in hope of renewing my health and regaining balance.

After attempting this work plan for a month, I am starting to get the hang of it. Although turning off my computer after four hours and going to do something else remains a work in progress

Simple Tools Keeping Me on Task

Staying on task for the four hours is relatively easy. Emailing myself a to-do list each night makes it that much easier. Before implementing the 4-hour work day, I typically started the day with a to-do list in my head. But I am finding having the list written down makes it more concrete, more tangible.

Each night I also email a list to iDoneThis of what I did that day. Seeing what I did accomplish is rewarding. Sometimes I add a note about how the day was or a highlight; like an abbreviated journal.

I am also using the stopwatch feature of the Vertabase Timer and an Excel spreadsheet to track how long tasks actually take me. I am not being anal about my time tracking because that would create yet another task and defeat the whole purpose. However, I am now getting a rough idea of how long some things are taking me.

Surprisingly, out of approximately 73 hours worked in January, I spent:

  • roughly 11 hours writing and replying to work-related email – and I still have 691 unread emails in my inbox; and
  • 19 hours writing blog posts – a post is taking me between two and five hours to write and proofread.

What those 19 hours of writing doesn’t capture is the amount of time I spend thinking about writing. As a writer – whether I am working on a post, an ebook, or text that will be converted to speech for a presentation – I am constantly thinking about ideas to write, words to write, messages to write. I am a writer; that is what I do, constantly. My mind doesn’t shut off when the four hours ends.

Foretelling the Rewards of Not Sitting at My Desk All Day

I am already feeling the benefits of a more compact work day. After having four colds in four months during the autumn, I am happy to report that I didn’t catch one in January!

However, there are still times when I feel totally wiped. Coming home from a dinner out with Darrell last Saturday, I was a little disappointed it was only 6:45pm; I felt like it was closer to 8:45. Rather than fighting the feeling with the childish rationale “I am an adult, I can’t go to bed this early”, I was in bed by 7:30. I guess that’s what my body needed at that time.

Other days I make it through the entire day without hearing, “Dear, you look tired. Go take it easy.”

I wish I could figure out the pattern. I have been more tired than not for as long as I can remember. What are my energy zappers? Is it related to my cerebral palsy? I don’t know. Perhaps it will be one of my lifelong questions.

A glimpse of a better work-life balance is beginning to peek through. After sitting on the shelf, taunting me for a year or more, I finally measured and cut the spool of purple cord that is destined to become a door pull. Macramé – a hobby that doesn’t involved the computer – what a concept!

Last Friday afternoon Darrell and I played hooky and spent a few hours down around the south side of False Creek. It was such a beautiful, almost-spring day! We even met up with a friend who we hadn’t seen in well over a year.

Saturday evening – if things go as planned – we will be having dinner with my cousin and my uncle (who I haven’t seen in years!) I am hoping this is only the beginning of reconnecting with local friends and family.

Glenda wearing handknitted toque and sweeter with False Creek and mountains in the background(Photo credit: Darrell Hyatt)

After starting the year on empty, I am now feeling about $5,000-$10,000. I am curious: what does “feeling like a million bucks” actually feel like?

If you enjoyed this post, consider buying me a chai tea latte. Thanks kindly.

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