The Energizer

Resilient Insights for Work & Life

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A Halloween Horror Tale: Byte by Byte

By Eileen McDargh - Monday, October 31, 2016

Ever been jinxed by technology? Have you had weeks in which some trickster named Terrible Technology is haunting your office, playing horrid games with every device and no amount of Hershey kisses will make it go away?  

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Getting People To Notice The New You

By Eileen McDargh - Monday, June 06, 2016

Because resiliency is all about growing through challenge or opportunity, it can be pretty frustrating and maybe even disheartening when people don't notice the “new you” that has emerged. 

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GROW Bolder - Not Older

By Eileen McDargh - Monday, March 21, 2016

Lola celebrated her 86th birthday by standing up and moving her feet to music while husband Hank hand held her hands. She awkwardly danced to tunes blaring from a CD player. As I watched, I cried. 

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The Future Ain’t What You Think!

By Eileen McDargh - Monday, October 12, 2015

This past week, I was the closing keynoter for the Council of Multiple Listing Services.  The course for a dense, information-packed conference was set by the opening keynoter, Michael A Rogers, former futurist-in-residence for NY Times, columnist for MSNBC, and head of Newsweek.com. 

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Speaking Of Employee Attitude... Let's Have Some Fun!

By Eileen McDargh - Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Turnaround your negative work environment by taking steps to be more positive. You can start by having clear expectations of employees and by having leaders who take an interest in their staff. If you really want to get employees excited about coming to work everyday then you'll have to go a bit farther. 

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People Don't Resist Change

By Eileen McDargh - Saturday, September 13, 2014
I’m getting ready to present a workshop on resiliency for yet another organization going through change. I’m thrilled to be able to help this specific department. At the same time, larger organization could use the wisdom supplied by my colleague, Chip Bell. In fact, whether you are a business of 3 or 33,000—Chip is spot on.

 

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No Fooling-5 Quick Ways to a Saner YOU!

By Eileen McDargh - Wednesday, April 02, 2014
  1. Allocate 15 minutes (or more) to go through old files and toss or shred what you don’t need, won’t look at, and can’t even remember why you have it!  My faithful assistant Bonnie created a file list as I called out what I was keeping and put in numerical files. Through the search function in Word, I will be able to locate documents when I need them. Opened up one entire file drawer!!!! (and was fascinating to see what was once valuable as well as what still had value but I had forgotten about it).
  2. Create a donation box and go through drawers to give away the bottom third—chances are you haven’t worn those items in years!
  3. Erase electronics. I know you are like me and there are gadgets, gizmos, chargers, cables, you name it—that you don’t use, won’t use, and have no idea what gadget it goes to. We can take our electronics to Radio Shack for destroying or to our City Hall. (Batteries are separate).
  4. Sell or save?  Some items I just don’t want to throw out. But I have no time to sell.  Of course, the flamenco dolls my Dad brought back from Europe after WWII might require effort on my part but…
  5. Weight - don’t wait.  Have your entire family weigh in.  Then give everyone a bag and they have 10 minutes to round up “stuff” they will never use that can go in the donation box.  The person who now weighs the most—holding his collection bag-- gets to choose tonight’s movie, or pizza, or the super-duper ice cream scoop. But the prize has to be consumable.
  6.  

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The Craft of Choosing Well – The Ultimate Success

By Eileen McDargh - Thursday, March 13, 2014

Do you remember the “good old days”? At least it seemed as if our parents’ or grandparents’ lives were so much easier. Those were the days when life seemed to work in a straightforward, linear fashion. You went to school. You chose college or a technical trade. You got married. Maybe you had kids. You retired. You died. Today, only death remains of that progressive march of time. And now, with advances in medicine, you can even lengthen (or shorten) the inevitability of death. 

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Be Here Now

By Eileen McDargh - Saturday, February 22, 2014

When we are young, we feel that time is on our side. Not any more.

Our days are a blur of perceived demands from workplaces stretched beyond the leading edge to the bleeding edge, from technology that allows others to locate us even in the privacy of our cars and bathrooms, from children and aging parents who name us and claim us, and from our inability to find options for creating mind sets and actions that can give us a modicum of breathing space and control.

We can all sing the chorus: “There’s too much to do and too little time.” We have created a commodity worth of the Stock Exchange: Time. We spend it, lose it, waste it, and manage it. We’re told to make time, use time, take time and, if we’ve had a run-in with the law, we might even “do” time.

Time is the great equalizer, given in singular 24-hour chunks by the rising of the sun and the setting of the moon. No money can buy it, no power can hold it, no army can stop it. We need to concentrate on winning back our life -- snatching it away from the blur of to-do lists, technology, and work/life pressures.

Four Truths

The more I ponder time demands, I realize four truths:

Truth 1: Simplicity isn’t simple. It’s an admirable, essential goal that most of us are working on. Simplicity takes time and requires an agreement from all those impacted by its requirements. We’ve been given day-to-day wisdom to follow in realizing the already-present abundance without adding to our closet, our bank account, our larder.

Truth 2: The technology genie will not go back into the bottle. Once released, our challenge becomes to wisely choose when we access technology’s power. The seductiveness of thinking we are so important that people must find us any time, any place, for any matter is ego at its worst. Consider my experience with a man who brought his computer and cellular phone along on a four-day cruise. He was not present. He missed the experience. And, I think, he lost.

Truth 3: Time management creates order and structure. It does not create present moment awareness. I’m not concerned with “managing time” as much as I am for discovering how to make better choices for what we put in these blocks called “time.” This is not about finding the latest time-saving devices. We all have a plethora of these. Too often, they’ve become excuses for letting us cram our life with longer to-do lists. We end up working harder and longer. What I want to have us consider is taking control, finding personal empowerment in our work, lives, lifestyles, and relationships. It’s about finding more life in our years and more years in our life. We do not have extra time, but we do have discretionary energy and creativity. And we can learn to be present in the moment.

Truth 4: Being present takes practice. As children, we felt we had command of our day, at least until bedtime. Summers stretched into hide-aways, street games, lightening bug hunts, marshmallows over campfires, and inner tubes in pools. What would happen if we could capture, practice, and re-frame the present so that at the end of a day, a week, or year, we felt like we have lived life -- with it’s joys and sorrows -- in a manner of our choosing? Plenty.

How to Get Started

Here are two examples of what you can do to be here now:

1. Create a sacred space for regrouping. This could be your car, your bathroom, your backyard. When you enter this space, ban anything that distracts your attention from simply breathing and noticing your surroundings.

2. Try and discover something you have never seen or heard before. There will always be something. This is like any exercise. The regular practice will allow you to stop at any given moment and be in control, centered, and observant. Keep a journal, and joy a few words of some event, person, experience or observation that struck you as meaningful. This is part of being in the now.

Being present means seeing with new eyes and looking beyond the obvious to that metaphorical magic which takes an event in time and earmarks it as a memory. By collecting these moments and capturing them in word or picture, at the end of a year, you’ll be amazed at how much you have won by being present. You have won back a portion of your life.
 

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Peachy Keen - A Sea Creature That Resembles Humans!

By Eileen McDargh - Friday, February 14, 2014

 

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