No iPad, No Problem

Philadelphia Flyers head coach John Tortorella ordered the removal of iPads on the bench typical used by players to view their shift on the ice.

Why?

He wants the players to focus more on what they will do the next time they jump on the ice, not looking at the last one.

It seems to have worked as the team which has struggled all season is winning more than losing at midpoint with the removal of iPads.

I emphasize to my NYU students, our digital devices exist to serve us and there are times when we do better focusing our attention on the next task up rather than getting caught up in the past.

Procrastinating

In Philly, there was a man named Les Waas who formed the Procrastinators Club just for fun and celebrated all the holiday months after they occurred much to the delight of members of the local media – me included.

Waas wouldn’t like the study I saw the other day that says there is a way to fix procrastination, the delay or postponement of action either because the task is too big or we’re not ready to do it.

The answer:  short-term rewards

Research shows lesser but more frequently rewards for working on our tasks gets better results than waiting until it is finished even if the final reward is bigger and more attractive.

Multitasking

It doesn’t work – studies show those who multitasked during cognitive tasks experienced an IQ decline similar to being up all night without sleep.

And The Cleveland Clinic says multitasking doesn’t work because when our brain bounces from task to task we become less efficient.

Only 2.5% of us can effectively multitask.

We already know what it’s like to feel slammed all the time.

Now we know that taking on more than we can handle only makes it worse.

But wait, there’s hope.

Multitasking by doing a cognitive task while also enjoying a passive experience such as simultaneously listening to music is fine.

Yes, Apologies

“I’m sorry IF I” is not an apology.

A real apology is to own up to what you’ve done and be ready for the consequences.

Shifting the blame is useless.

When the other person has been hurt, it is not about us, it’s about them and how we can make things right.

Likeability

People don’t like you for who you are, they like you for how they feel about themselves in your presence.

If you help people love themselves in your presence, that is the key to relationships and that is the key to reputation.

Wisdom from Dr. Amit Sood, who emphasizes resiliency as a path toward happiness.

Cutting Screen Time …

Cutting screen time is not easy but in five years I have seen an increase among my young students in the use of paper.

Digital devices are not allowed in class, they take great notes with pen and paper.

Several each semester “discover” a paper calendar and/or to-do list which they rave about as a great way to manage their time – digital devices are capable but also loaded with distractions.

Some even read books, the kind that are printed in addition to what’s available online.

And I’ve come to discover their reasoning:  spend less time with screens which they acknowledge as being deleterious to their health causing sleep problems and increased anxiety.

Reducing screen time doesn’t mean throwing away your phone, it simply means putting it in the best place to work for you.

Resilience Over Happiness …

Looking for happiness is a noble thought but not as productive as building resilience to help with overcoming adversity.

Happiness flows out of confronting tough breaks, tough times and sometimes even tough people.

Amit Sood, the Mayo Clinic physician who is helping NYU develop its anti-stress program for students is the founder of the Global Center for Resiliency and Wellbeing which educates about stress and how it affects the mind, body and overall health.

The goal is happiness, the means to get there is strengthening resilience.

Best Words for a Real Friend …

Tell them the one thing that makes them special to you and then give an example.

This type of feedback works – I ask my students to listen to presentations and then comment on them by saying what they liked and then giving a specific example.

Everyone smiles.

Don’t wait for a funeral to think about how you value a real friend – tell them and give evidence.

That’s a living compliment – try it today.

How Long to Keep Trying …

The person who wants it the most is the one who fails and keeps trying.

If there is a limit to the number of times you’ll pick yourself up off the floor and start all over again, then you’d like it but not have to have it.

Everything – happiness, friendship, money, joy – is not going to come down from a cloud and bestow itself on us – we have to endlessly try to get what we desire.

Today I’m going to get up faster and try again.

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Why You Are Perfect …

When someone dislikes you, they have a problem – not you.

When their need to tell you, insult or bully you is that great, why even listen to them.

We’re fine the way we are.

When we want to get better, we alone will make that decision.

When someone doesn’t like us, they don’t like themselves first.

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