One secret to greater productivity

When we rush through life, trying to be productive, we usually don’t accomplish much.

But when we take our time, trying to do less, we actually do better, more intentional work.

Take some time this week to unplug when you do your work.

  • No email
  • No social media
  • No constant checking of the phone or endless text conversations with friends.

Unplug and engage the world around you.


How I learned I was obsessed with my phone

I like to kid around by saying that my cell phone offers way too much access to me.  But as the old saying goes, “There’s a little truth in every bit of kidding.”

Recently, I made the self-proclamation “enough is enough” and made an effort to set the phone aside during family hours at home.  Why invite the distraction, right?  My plan to relieve the distraction was to simply take the phone out of my pocket and set it aside.

Seemed easy enough until the kids started to bring the cell to me saying, “Dad, your phone was vibrating.  Here you go.”

Wait, what?  The plan was to rid myself of this gadget for awhile…  And now, my kids were bringing the cell phone to me, hauling it from room to room and expecting me to interact with the phone instead of them.

Somewhere along the line they picked up a message that the phone was more important than family time.  At some point they learned that a phone had the right of way to cut through and interrupt whatever was happening at the time.  It was in that moment where I realized that they have seen me pull that gadget out of my pocket waaaay too many times.  Most disappointing, I had welcomed its interruption.

The cell phone has been a struggle for me.  I like having access to news, articles, emails, twitter, and text messages within my grasp.  But going to that stuff instead of being with the family does not make the father I want to be nor is it the example I want to set for technology use.

So, now I have become even more intentional about phone-free hours.  I put it away or turn it off all together and then attend to the family and enjoy knowing that I will not be interrupted.  It’s amazing how much clarity it has brought to my family time.  I just know that I’m to be with my wife or the kids and nothing else.  And without question, I enjoy that time more and more.  Try it yourself see the freedom this brings.

99 Thoughts for Small Group Leaders [2-Sentence Book Review]

99 Thoughts for Small Group Leaders
By Joshua Griffin with Doug Fields
5 stars

What is the book about?
Capturing the purpose of youth ministry small groups.  It’s jam-packed with tips, thoughts, and reminders for effective small group leadership.

What do I think about it?
It is SOLID!  Every page has a can’t-miss tip and discussion starter.

What got me pumped up?
The passion that this book has for explaining why we have small groups in youth ministry is incredible.  It is wonderful to have a Bible verse tied to each of these thoughts and tips as well.

What was deflating?
Nothing!  Except maybe knowing that we have the daunting task to spread this resource to our whole team of volunteers!

“So, would you recommend it?”
Of course!  This book should be in the hands of any youth leader who has small groups as a part of their ministry.

Zarrella’s Hierarchy of Contagiousness [2-Sentence Book Review]

Zarrella’s Hierarchy of Contagiousness: The Science, Design, and Engineering of Contagious Ideas
By Dan Zarrella
4.5 stars

What is the book about?
Optimizing the way you use social media.  It’s packed with ideas, analysis, and thoughts for what works, what doesn’t, and why you should do something about it.

What do I think about it?
I read this book on my Kindle App and was anticipating the flash to the next page to read on.  I’d never heard of Zarrella (got a free download on the Kindle App) and I was certainly impressed with this book.

What got me pumped up?
The measurements of social media results were incredible.  The entire book is packed with graphs, charts, and advice to run with.

What was deflating?
Nothing.  But if you don’t tweet or blog then this book would be a flat tire for you.

“So, would you recommend it?”
Yes!  At this point, anything that is linked to The Domino Project is worth reading.