Brain Basics

This set of GREAT Skills trading cards on the brain and motivation includes:

Brain Facts: The human brain weighs about 3 pounds and is 75% water. It uses about 20% of the oxygen in the body. The brain is very complex, but a few Brain regions at Brain Basics include the prefrontal cortex which is responsible for executive functions, and the amygdala, where the fight or flight response takes place. There are five kinds of brain waves, and the brain is influenced by chemicals known as neurotransmitters.

A to-do list for your brain:

Learn new things, and exercise your brain with games.

Scientific American debates the effectiveness at brain games at Brain Games: do they really work. See one man’s experience at Training my Aging Brain from Discover magazine. But if you’d like to try a few just in case, there are some free online brain games at this Pinterest Board.

Eat dark chocolate! Psychology Today says so.

Meditate. 7 ways meditation can change the brain from Forbes.

Exercise. Harvard School of Medicine says so.

Brainbows from the Center for Brain Science

More Resources:

Posted in Ideas That Work, personal development

2016 Screen and Page

I’ve devoted this year to reading books that have been adapted into movies, and then watching the movies. It’s been an interesting year! This is a great way to run a book group, because there are lots of resources to help, and if you don’t have time to read the book, you can still watch the movie and participate. (although without comparing the book to the movie!) At the Screen and Page on Goodreads, I tried to find both “Theater Reads” (currently in theaters) and “Watch at Home Reads” (available on DVD or to stream) options. I found that at times there weren’t too many options for theater reads that might lead to good discussions. I stuck to options for adults, and some of them are rated R.

I started out with Manhattan Night, based on the book “Manhattan Nocturene” by Colin Harrison. If you like dark and twisty, you might like them, I quite enjoyed both.

Next up was the Oscar winning “Room” by Emma Donoghue. Some of these titles were outside of what I usually might read or watch, and led to some pleasant surprises.

“Me Before You” by JoJo Moyes was another pleasant surprise. I bought the book and shared it with several friends. We planned to go to the movie for ages, but it was hard to get our schedules on the same page! We finally got to see the movie recently, enjoyed it a lot, and felt it closely followed the book.

I liked the book “The Light Between Oceans” by M.L. Stedman. Haven’t had a chance to see the movie yet, but it’s on my list.

Another dark and twisty one: “The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkins. Loved both the book and the movie!

“The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak is one that’s been around for awhile that I had not gotten around to. I struggled a bit at first with the book, but I’m glad that I read it before watching the movie. Brilliantly filmed, with great characters, and it’s in part about the power of books and reading.

“The Dressmaker” by Rosalie Ham was another pleasant surprise that was a stretch beyond what I normally read. I enjoyed the book, and hope to see the movie soon.

Along the way, I watched some book-to-movie adaptations without getting the book read.

It’s about a wrap for the year 2016. I enjoyed this so much I intend to keep it up in 2017!

movieheading

 

 

 

Posted in Books, Ideas That Work

Planner Printables

The Annual Planner has been a great way to stay on track with reviews. (even if sometimes they are more monthly than weekly!) While the booklet I made last year still works, (see link below) this year I’ve put together a binder for planning, with printable forms to organize and manage tasks. I printed Weekly & Monthly Review Trackers to keep in the binder.

2017system

The binder has five dividers with pockets:

  1. System Tab:
    1. An annual calendar, which I use for the cover. I like the 2017 calendar from scrappystinkyinkymess.
    2. A monthly calendar. (I print my Google calendar.)
    3. A form for weekly planning.
    4. A form for daily planning.

weekplanbinder

Weekly Plan binder version (pdf)

dailyplanbinder

Daily Plan binder version (pdf)

I like the way you get a view that includes month, week, & day! Another option is a daily planner that can be printed on sticky notes using a template from studenthandouts.com:

Find more possibilities at Free Tools or the Productivity Pinterest Board.

2.Review Tab:

  1. A habit tracker: the annual calendar from Vertex42 works well for this.
  2. Annual metrics form at An Annual Review from the Daily PlanIt.
  3. My Reading List from Money Saving Mom. (pdf)
  4. Weekly & Monthly Review Tracker (pdf). (updated from the Annual Planner Booklet at An Annual Review.)

weeklymoreviewtracker

3. Routine Tab:

  1. Daily Schedule at A Daily Routine.
  2. Weekly Repeating Tasks. Free printable pdf from the dailyplanit.
  3. Monthly Repeating Tasks. Free printable pdf at Repeating Tasks from the dailyplanit.
  4. Annual Repeating Tasks. Free printable from the project girl.

4. Focus Tab:

  1. Goal Worksheet – at Goal Worksheet
  2. Sticky Note Goals – also at Goal Worksheet
  3. Talent worksheet – at uncover hidden talents
  4. Value statement worksheet – at Your Unique Selling Proposition

valuestatementworksheet

5. Projects:

  1. Current Projects – 6 Blank Polaroid sticky notes (pdf)
  2. Goal & Project Plans
  3. Sweet spot priority matrix

ProjectPlan

This planner (which is separate from the Household Binder) should keep me focused and on track to get more of the important stuff done. Remember there are lots of more options for forms you might like at the Daily PlanIt Productivity Tool Pinterest Board!

Posted in productivity

Goal Worksheet

The Keep It Super Simple goal-worksheet (pdf) is here!

goalworksheet

  1. Choose goals. Look at life areas you might want to improve.
  2. What do you want more of in this area, and how will you increase it?
  3. Say it SMART: make it specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound.
  4. Break it down into action steps.
  5. Know your why. Because you: believe in something, want to solve a problem? What will success make possible?
  6. Picture it! Keep it visual & visible, and track it.
  7. Commit to it.
  8. Get Goaling!
postitgoals

Free printable sticky note goals set of 3 each/page (pdf)

Here’s how to print the sticky note goals using a template from studenthandouts.com

Stay on track with regular reviews: the Weekly & Monthly Review Tracker is now available at An Annual Review.

Learn more with the ebook “Get Goaling: the simple guide to set and achieve your goals.”

Posted in goals

Reading Record Punch Card

How can libraries create excitement about coming into the library to check out books or other items on a regular basis? I’m thinking a monthly drawing with really neat (but not too expensive) book related prizes. When patrons check out (at least) once a month, they get a monthly punch on a Reading Record Punch Card, and can enter their name for the monthly drawing. If they get a punch each month they can enter their card for the annual grand prize drawing. This is aimed at adults only, no kids allowed! (why should they be the only ones having fun?!) Actually, school librarians could modify the idea a  little and have fun with it too.

You could even set up a selfie photo booth. A word bubble could say “Check me out! I checked this out at the library!” with a checkerboard background.

There are so many great possibilities for prizes. There are a lot of book lovers out there! Here are some of the prize ideas I’ve come up with so far.

See lots of ideas at this Pinterest BoardPinterestLogo

  1. Color Your World at the Library: an adult coloring book & pencils.
  2. Sweeten Your World at the Library: hot chocolate & chocolate trail mix.
  3. Organize Your World at the Library: a Household Binder Notebook.
  4. Light Up Your World at the Library: a book light & this mug.
  5. Rock Your World at the Library: a music CD or gift card, or vintage record label coasters.
  6. Game On! Level up Your World at the Library: a big wooden scrabble letter sign that spells READ or scrabble letter fridge magnets from PBS.
  7. Caffeinate Your World at the Library: a coffee mug & Starbucks gift card.
  8. Turn Up Your Creativi-tea at the Library: Novel Teas.
  9. ACT-ivate Your World at the Library: a movie quote mug & CD of great movie soundtracks or popcorn.
  10. Carry On at the Library: a Where the Wild Things Are tote bag or pouch. Or a Keep Calm & Carry On tote.
  11. Relax & Read at the Library: a literary pillow or a Keep Calm & Read On mug.
  12. It’s Time to Read at the Library: a literary clock or a Book Lover’s Calendar.
  13. Annual Grand Prize: maybe a literary garden sign post, or a Once Upon a Time lamp.

I looked for things that might appeal to anyone, and most cost around $10 or $15. It would take a little bit of a marketing budget to pull off. This idea might also work for bookstores looking for a way to encourage customers to return on a regular basis. And those in search of great gifts for book lovers, of course these things would totally work. Which ones do you like the best? What should be used for the annual grand prize? Let me know your thoughts at the Daily Planit Facebook page.

Here is a Reading Record version of the punch card:

Posted in Books, Ideas That Work

Goal Skills

How to Be a Black Belt Goal Setter

There are many skills involved in the art of goal setting. Learn how to move from the white belt level to become a black belt goal setter with a free printable Goal Mastery Levels. (pdf)

goalmastery

Purpose: “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.” –Lewis Carroll

Choosing: There are so many options! Learn how to choose top priority goals.

Planning: Know where to start with a game plan.

SMART goals: Know the rules of goals based on science. Goals need to be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time sensitive.

Visible & Visual: Remind yourself of where you want to go and why. Life is full of distractions to take you off course!

Inspiration: Get inspired with Audio & Video, Quotes & Books

Motivation: Give yourself a motivation boost when you seem to have lost it somewhere.

Discipline: Self-control and grit are key to the ability to power through when the going gets tough.

Time Management: Make time for your goals with effective time use.

Acting: “Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.” -Will Rogers

Persistence: It can take a lot of determination to keep going.

Reviewing: Monitor progress with weekly reviews, monthly reviews, and an annual review.

Learn more about setting and achieving goals with a free tutorial and the eBook “Get Goaling: A simple guide to set and achieve your goals”

 

Posted in goals

To (Always) Do Today

Think you’ve already got enough lists in your system? I recently added another one that I call my To (always) Do Today List. This new list was inspired by a quote from Benjamin Franklin: “Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.”

Image result for write something worth reading or do something worth writing

I added this quote from Brian Tracy: “Make progress (not excuses)”

Image result for make progress not excuses quote brian tracy

Plus my own observations about the importance of making today count and choosing a personal growth mindset.

MakeTodayCount

My To (Always) Do Today List looks like this:

toalwaysdotoday

What’s on your To (always) Do Today List?

 

Posted in productivity
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