Focus, Organization, Productivity – Is There a Unifying Element to Success?

What?

I guess at this point in my life, some would say I have gone completely “around the bend” or “over the edge” about this issue of getting more focused, organized and productive. It is no longer just an area of interest for me. It is my career, my passion and pretty much all I want to do for the rest of my life. I believe that studying about and teaching this body of knowledge is my true “calling,” and my fascination with this field continues to grow stronger each day.

If you study any topic diligently, sooner or later you begin to see fascinating connections and begin to understand how the various strands of knowledge and snippets of information come together at a common point. When this starts to happen, you can’t help but wonder about the unifying element of it all. You wonder, “Is there a central idea, concept or focal point that pulls it all together?”

So…is there a focal point or unifying element of getting focused, organized and productive? I’m beginning to think there is!

So What?

If you observe highly focused people, you can usually track their behavior to the same controlling source. If you trace good organizing habits to their source, you always arrive at the same place. If you track down what makes a person highly productive, once again, you find yourself heading in the same direction. It’s as if you backed down the train tracks heading out of New York City until you arrived at their originating point. If you do this, sooner or later, you arrive at or near 42nd Street and Park Avenue…New York’s Grand Central Terminal.

In similar fashion, if you back down the tracks leading to focus, organization and productivity…they take you to the Grand Central Terminal of human beings…the brain.

I often tell people who are struggling to get organized, “If you get your mind right…everything else will begin to easily fall into place.” I suspect most people probably pass this off as a casual statement or consider it tired, worn-out advice. However, in my mind, there is no better advice I can offer. I have studied this topic for a long, long time. I am becoming more convinced that the human brain is the focal point that pulls everything together. Therefore, if you understand more about how the brain works, you will begin to uncover the true secrets of living a more focused, organized and productive life.

Now What?

A friend of mine recently bought a very expensive, very sophisticated new car. Right after he bought it, we jumped in his car and took a short ride. The car is the high-tech automotive equivalent of a thermos. It knows! Just as a thermos somehow “magically” knows to keep cold things cold, and hot things hot…this car knows how to assess various situations and respond accordingly and appropriately. It has enough buttons, switches, bells, whistles, gadgets and features to keep a rocket scientist happy for quite some time. Fortunately, my friend is a maven with regard to such matters, and I am convinced he will learn to use all the technological wonders available in his new car. However, I imagine some people will buy a car just like my friend’s and never learn to use a fraction of the gadgets. All the gadgets will be available, ready for use…but they will get little use out of them until they take the time to understand how these features work.

In a sense, this is a good metaphor for your brain. It also has a lot of interesting bells, whistles, gadgets and features. You increase your ability to take advantage of these wonderful features if you know more about how they work. Here are just a few examples:

  • The brain has three separate systems that either work in harmony or compete for control over your behavior. One system is in control of your automatic functions such as breathing, heartbeat, temperature, metabolism, etc. A separate brain system controls your emotional functions. A third system controls your ability to think and exercise sound judgment. Everything works best when the systems are in balance and working together. When you see someone who is focused, organized and productive, the three systems are operating in harmony. The best way to create balance among the three systems is to pace yourself properly (as opposed to overloading your systems with too much input) and simply think about what you are doing…when you are doing it. Another way of saying this is: Do one thing at a time! Somewhat rare behavior these days. The brain systems work together best when you focus on one thing at a time.
  • When you begin to overload your brain systems by multitasking, rushing or operating under too much stress, your emotional brain (the limbic system) takes over and starts calling the shots. One part of your emotional brain (the amygdala) hijacks your body and takes total control over your behavior. Although this can be a good thing at times (for example, if you find yourself being chased by a saber-toothed tiger), unlike a thermos, the emotional brain doesn’t always know how to respond appropriately to incoming messages from your five senses. For example, when the incoming messages indicate a tiger is on your tail, every nonessential brain system that doesn’t have a lot to do with running in the opposite direction is essentially shut down. One of the first systems to shut down is the thinking system of your brain (the neocortex). Your emotional brain basically says, “Don’t think…run!” The good news…we are not chased by tigers very often these days. The bad news…the brain doesn’t know that. Anytime you operate under too much stress, the brain thinks a tiger is on your tail and shuts down the thinking functions of your brain. In general, when the thinking functions of your brain are shut down, you default to your habits…good or bad.
  • The moral of this story…if you are going to operate in a state of heightened emotions, you had better install some very good habits in your brain and nervous system to handle things important to you. That’s why they make pilots, astronauts and military people drill on emergency procedures so much. When the amygdala hijacks their bodies, they can still function effectively. Therefore, forming habits is the key to success in getting more focused, organized and productive. Planners, file systems, electronic gadgets and gizmos only work if the proper habits are formed first.
  • The brain also houses your memory system, which operates much like a sophisticated tape recorder. Unlike a regular tape recorder, the brain’s memory system stores both facts and feelings. When things happen to you, a part of your emotional brain (the hippocampus) records the facts related to what happened and another part (the amygdala, again) records the feelings associated with the facts. When a similar, not necessarily identical, set of facts occur in the future, the tape recorder is turned on and the recorded feelings resurface and strongly influence your behavior. For example, if your parents scared you as a child by saying, “Don’t talk to strangers,” a little too often with a little too much emotion, you may have trouble being a superstar salesperson as an adult. You’ve probably got a tape running that inhibits your ability to perform one of the most critical functions in sales…talking to strangers. Most people have strong tapes related to money, taking orders, giving orders, being assertive and other issues related to being a successful businessperson. Some of your tapes serve you well…some don’t! Learning more about your tapes can be an enlightening experience.
  • Although people often compare the brain to a computer, it is really better to think of it more as a chemical factory. All instructions issued by the brain are carried out by chemicals call neurotransmitters. Therefore, what you eat, how much you exercise, how you breathe, and anything you do that alters the chemicals flowing through your brain can alter your behavior. Basically, the neurotransmitters running through your brain and nervous system fall into two categories…excitatory or inhibitory. So, take a look at your current life speed and figure out if you need to slow down or speed up. Here’s a hint…learning how to breathe properly is a good use of your time if you want to influence neurotransmitters.

I could go on and on about how the brain, tapes, neurotransmitters and other factors influence behavior. But here’s the main point: If you really want to experience quantum leaps in your ability to get more focused, organized and productive…learn a little more about how your brain works. When you understand more about how the brain works, you can actually begin to exercise some measure of control over it, especially when you are operating under stress. Otherwise, it controls you…and you wonder why you intended to do one thing…but did another thing entirely.

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Roku Digital Video Players

A Roku is a type of digital video player. Roku streams TV shows and movies from the Internet directly to your TV. Roku is simple to use and can be set-up in about 5 minutes. It does not require a PC.

Roku can access content from Hulu Plus, Amazon Video On Demand, Netflix, and many more sources. There is a nearly unlimited amount of media available through Roku. Roku also streams music and photos from the Internet. It can connect to the popular and free streaming music service Pandora. The advantage of streaming content is that there is no need to wait for the content to download. It is available instantly.

Roku comes in 3 different models ranging in price from about $60 to $100. All of the models play high-definition video, have HDMI output ports, and wireless Internet connectivity. The mid-priced model adds features such as wireless-n, 1080p video playback, and an instant replay feature on the remote control. The top of the line model includes all these features plus dual-band wireless, a USB port, and component video and optical audio connections.

Roku does not come with a HDMI cable, so most users will want to purchase that separately. Also, many of the best content sources require paid subscriptions. There are however many free content sources as well.

There are other products to consider in the digital video player space such as Boxee Box, Apple TV, and WD TV Live Plus. Boxee Box may offer the best user interface. Apple TV offers the best iTunes integration. WD TV Live Plus can serve media to other devices on the same network.

However, this Roku review has determined that Roku is the best digital video player on the market. It’s balance of features and price, as well as having 3 different models from which to choose, clearly make it the market leader.

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Computer Aided Drafting Schools – Degree Possibilities

There are numerous career training possibilities for those looking to gain the education needed for a career in computer aided drafting. Accredited vocational and trade schools as well as other training programs are available to provide the skills and knowledge needed to pursue a career in the field. Students can train for a variety of careers while learning to plan, create, and design various structures. Certificates are available in certain areas and computer aided drafting schools offer degree possibilities at the associate’s, bachelors, and masters level.

*Associate Degree

An accredited associate’s degree in computer aided drafting will give students the opportunity to gain the training needed to pursue an exciting career. Study at this level typically requires students to complete two years of training. Coursework will vary by school but may consist of courses like:

  • Civil Drafting
  • Mathematics
  • Architectural Design
  • Computer Applications
  • Drafting Standards

…and many other related course subjects. By gaining an accredited associates degree in the field students can prepare to enter the workforce or continue education at a bachelor’s degree level.

*Bachelor Degree

Students can earn an accredited bachelors degree in computer aided drafting by completing a four year educational program. Accredited schools can provide students with a number of skills in order to prepare them for their desired career. Curriculum will vary but may cover a variety of subjects like education in structural engineering, computer programming, computer graphics, visual basic, written communication and much more. Students who choose to earn a degree at this level will be ready to seek employment or obtain a masters degree in the field.

*Masters Degree

Educational programs are available to provide students with the chance to earn an accredited masters degree in computer aided drafting. Masters degree programs typically require an additional two years of study to complete. Students will be able to study a variety of subjects like:

  • Civil Drafting
  • Commercial Construction
  • Graphic Design
  • Mechanical Systems
  • Mechanical Design

…and other courses. By gaining an accredited masters level education students will be prepared to enter into the career of their dreams

*Certificates

Students can receive continuing education certificate in the field to enhance their skills and knowledge in certain areas. Students can gain a certificate in computer aided drafting by enrolling in an accredited continuing education course. Studies can include architectural drafting training, general design, and 3D design. Students can also learn mechanical engineering, electronic drafting, technical drawing, 2D design, and more. Continuing education certificates will give students the extra training they desire for their career.

Accrediting agencies like The National Association of Schools of Arts and Design ( http://nasad.arts-accredit.org/ ) are approved to fully accredit various educational programs. Students can receive the best quality education possible by enrolling in an accredited school or college. Requesting more information will provide students with the means to choose the program that’s right for them. Start training for the career of your choice by enrolling in an accredited computer aided drafting training program today.

DISCLAIMER: Above is a GENERIC OUTLINE and may or may not depict precise methods, courses and/or focuses related to ANY ONE specific school(s) that may or may not be advertised at PETAP.org.

Copyright 2010 – All rights reserved by PETAP.org.

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Building Your Recruitment Tracking System – Where Do You Begin?

If the time has come for you to make your first foray into the world of targeted business information management, building your recruitment tracking system can seem like an overwhelming sort of task. It can be difficult to decide exactly where to begin. As with any business decision, the best starting point is knowledge, carefully considering what your recruitment tracking system goals are and researching the best methods and means of achieving those goals. You’ll need to start out by understanding the potentials and possibilities that the leading recruitment tracking software and applicant tracking system options have to offer your business.

A recruitment tracking system can be a valuable resource in facilitating the outsourcing of labor of all sorts. It can be an invaluable tool in locating and courting the superior talent you want to attract for key positions in your business organization. This type of system can streamline the recruiting process dramatically, from the initial call out for applicants, right through the interview and hiring processes and into those early employment days. It can help you to avoid the sorts of human errors that can result in an unintentional but still costly failure to comply with employment law. It can reduce the operating cost of your human resource management team while increasing overall efficiency and productivity.

Understanding what recruitment tracking system features are most important to you will help to ensure that you choose the system that is best able to meet your specific business information management goals. Once you have gained a good grasp of what you need your system to accomplish and have become familiar with what such systems can offer you, perhaps even expanding your expectations once you see just how much they can do to improve your recruitment reach and efficiency, you’ll need to give some consideration to how you want to access and implement these solutions. Today’s technologies have added another option to the standard choices – cloud based systems.

There are advantages to both, a site located system and the cloud based system. Choosing between the two is going to be more of a personal decision based upon your specific technology comfort level, your recruitment tracking system needs, your budget, and the way your business is set up. Cloud based systems, for example, are a great option for a business that is not set up in the traditional brick and mortar manner, but rather has key personnel spread out across broad geographical distances. Start ups find cloud based services to be an excellent option because they often require less of an initial investment, whereas established businesses set up in a more traditional manner appreciate having a solid on site system available.

Once you’ve gained this in-depth knowledge and understanding, the next task, actually selecting and implementing your new recruitment tracking system will seem much less onerous. Making the right choices for your specific business needs will be much simpler when you start the process at the right point, becoming an informed consumer through researching your options and understanding exactly what you need to help your business reach its full potential for success.

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