It’s all very well having an immaculate office where every piece of paper is accounted for, but how exactly is this new-found organisation going to make a difference? You’ll achieve more. When you’re disorganized, there are always barriers that hold you back from reaching your goals. But organized people eliminate tasks that aren’t necessary and streamline those that are taking too much time. This leaves time and concentration to successfully complete the priorities on your list.
Just as with physical clutter, you need to empty your brain of unnecessary mental burdens. Don’t waste your brain power trying to memorise facts and figures that can be filed and easily retrieved when required (telephone numbers, bank accounts etc). It’s like having multiple programmes running on your computer simultaneously, it’s going to reduce the crunch power. Instead make ‘To Do’ lists and consider subscribing to Callpod Keeper, a secure password and data vault for mobile telephones, computers and tablets.
But what to do when you’re in a new client meeting or cocktail party trying to remember everyone’s name? Employ the trick of Clinical Psychologist, Danny Ng who last week shared study techniques at my son’s school.
When faced with a long list to memorise, realise that for most of us 7 is the greatest number of facts we can retain in our short-term memory (The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two: Some Limits on Our Capacity for Processing Information, George Miller, 1956.) Hence don’t attempt to learn the names in a linear fashion (the order in which you were introduced) but categorise or ‘chunk’ into groups of no more than seven names. You’re much more likely to impress your new associates if you can differentiate and recall them as:
a) short hair b) long hair
i) wearing glasses ii) no glasses
I) in banking II) IT related
a) with moustache/beard b) clean shaven
i) wearing tuxedo ii) wearing suit
I) golfer II) football fan
Use improved organisation and technology to help free up your powers of concentration so that you can devote your energy to less routine and more important matters.