A simple yet effective mind game that I play with myself all the time is that of doing “every other” task that needs to be done.

I write the week’s leadership dots by first writing one for every other day, making it much easier to complete the week by filling in the holes. I’m writing 1000 postcards encouraging people to vote and addressed all first-time voters first, making it seem faster to complete a page of addresses because many of them are already done. I clean my house by doing every other room, and then it seems to finish painlessly when I go through and connect the missing rooms.

I know that I’m doing the same amount of work and spending the same amount of time, but the emotional drain is less. See if you can do some mental gymnastics with yourself and make Swiss cheese out of your next task list. It doesn’t have to be every other one in the literal sense, but alternating your work is far less daunting than facing a big task all at once.

I'm the chief connector at leadership dots where I serve as "the string" for individuals and organizations. Like stringing pearls together to make a necklace, "being the string" is an intentional way of thinking and behaving – making linkages between things that otherwise appear random or unconnected – whether that be supervising a staff, completing a dissertation or advancing a project in the workplace. I share daily leadership dots on my blog to provide examples of “the string” in action. I use the string philosophy through coaching, consulting and teaching to help others build capacity in themselves and their organizations. I craft analogies and metaphors that help people comprehend complex topics and understand their role in the system. My favorite work involves helping those new to supervision or newly promoted supervisors build confidence and learn the skills necessary to effectively lead their team.

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