Revitalize Your Workspace with ‘Balance’

What does your day look like? Are you balancing?

 No, not checks. Yourself. Whether we’re one month down or six months into the year, it’s always a good time to revisit personal values. If you have found yourself feeling overwhelmed or dissatisfied this past year, (it’s normal, whatever that is? However, let’s not digress).

Simply put, aside from external circumstances, often doubt arises from not upholding the personal values and goals you set for yourself during day-to-day life.

Before time slips away, it’s worth taking a few minutes within your day to reflect on what your personal values and goals are to revitalize your daily routine.

As cliché as it may seem, there’s no escaping the fact, feeling accomplished is a value in life, which increases happiness.

Here are five tips on how creating a functional workspace with iStratus, can honor your values:

Accountability

Being aware of your values in decision-making also holds you accountable for choices.

The iStratus ‘Daily Drop Box’ helps set things out. So next time a new project lands on your desk, use iStratus to establish a ‘sketch’ of your values before saying, “Yes” or “No”.

Following through with a clear direction could lead to an unexpected outcome where you aren’t compromising what is truly important to you.

Prioritization

Ah yes, an iStratus favorite: Prioritization. Organize your workspace planning by re-arranging “To-Do’s” that honor your values first.

Endless “To-Do’s” often make it more difficult to accomplish tasks. Thus, instead of bringing order to the chaos of life, it can actually lead to feeling the opposite, like you’re not accomplishing anything.

iStratus Recommends: 

  • Prioritizing your “To-Do’s”, with your top two or three values. These could be anything. For example, improved fitness, creativity, or family time. Think about what matters to you most.

  • Tasks responding to unimportant items in your inbox should be completed following time spent tackling projects that are hanging over your head. 

Balance

Honestly, ‘work-life balance’ feels like a myth. As stifling as mapping out your values might seem, it will bring a bit of balance to your life, no matter how hectic or crazy it becomes.

The iStratus Workspace aims to support the process of applying your values within your schedule. When your week is filled with multiple activities, we feel storing important items with reminders on your phone can help re-create a balanced to-do list that honors values, on all levels.

Authenticity

It’s easy to get bogged down, especially when it feels like others are succeeding, where you’re struggling.

In time, we must take action for completion. Even mundane tasks can be done with heart, when we commit to what we do.

In iStratus, simplicity is the only shortcut. You still need to stick with your goals and values in order to see what is working and what isn’t. We feel this is a good thing! When you practice looking at your own values for achieving your goals, you’ll be living with sincerity.

Happiness

Happiness comes back to making time for positive planning, prioritizing and holding yourself accountable. The ability to find balance and live authentically, all leads to a happier you.

Find the right fit. Spend some time using iStratus to kick-start your value-based goal setting today.

Like everything in life, there are two sides to the coin or plan. Pro’s and Con’s are key to revitalizing your workspace with iStratus:

Position The Positive

  • Planning is a Guide for Action: Coordinated and focused actions work because they apply specific outcomes.

  • Plans Facilitate Commitment: Planning reduces uncertainty. Clear expectations become a win for commitment, working towards goals and subsequent rewards.

  • Plans Establish Performance Standards: Planning outlines desired outcomes as well as mileposts to define progress. Growth is always fundamental.

A Few Drawbacks – 

To planning that iStratus aims to reduce:

  • Planning Prevents Action: “Death (figuratively) by planning” exists. Planning does little good if it doesn’t lead to functionality.

  • Planning Leads to Complacency: Solid plans can lead to believing the ‘where to’ and ‘how to’ is concrete, causing lapses in progress. Remember, planning is not a one-time process. Continual implementation and modification arei critical.

  • Plans Inhibit Creativity/Flexibility: If something isn’t working, scrap it from the folder. Success comes from innovation and organization, however, it shouldn’t inhibit you from applying creativity or intuitiveness.

Progress is rarely made through random activity. Plans are not objectives, but a means to an objective. The iStratus App is designed to help you make headway.

When you revitalize your workspace ‘balance’ with a whole new modality for the future, it’s got to be a good thing.

“AN IDEA ISN’T WORTH THAT MUCH. IT’S THE EXECUTION OF THE IDEA THAT HAS VALUE. IF YOU CAN’T CONVINCE ONE OTHER PERSON THAT THIS IS SOMETHING TO DEVOTE YOUR LIFE TO, THEN IT’S NOT WORTH IT.”

~ JOEL SPOLSKY

Live life and roll well with iStratus.

Synchronize It!

Synchronicity. We approve of that. Don’t you?

Synchronicity brings organization.

For you. And your Calendar, that is.

What is it with life that causes, those days, weeks followed by months on end to become a mind-boggling swamp? When you think about it, it’s the daily calendar we often find ever so monotomous.

Isn’t it a pleasure when things just work impeccably well? All those dates and dot points connect together without a hitch across various platforms.

Welcome to iStratus.

Our calendar function does just that. Allows access via your phone settings, and it’s as simple as one, two, three. In fact, it is even simpler.

Set an event, in one calendar and it transfers directly to iStratus. One-click. No-fuss. Just purely, perfect synchronicity.

Organization Simplified. Book it in.

Your calendar is akin to armor in the skirmish of working life. It safely guards your boundaries against other people’s priorities and influence, which can easily impede upon your own precipitously expanding list of “Must Do’s”.

All you need is something like iStratus, a proven calendar management strategy, to win the battle.

Follow Your Instincts When Planning Ahead

It’s natural to feel more energized by certain activities at different points during work hours.

For instance, when working from home some of us like to hit the gym in the morning. Followed by meetings, phone calls and transcribing reports or proposals that require completion. By late afternoon, procrastination on Facebook beckons — and then to avoid becoming a complete couch potato with Netflix, it feels far better to address more tasks, paying bills or reviewing stats on your SEO.

A culinary adventure for becoming the next Master-Chef in the evening works well. Or perhaps not. Do whatever floats your boat.

The point is, the specifics of your day are less important than recognizing when responsibilities motivate you to be productive as opposed to when they vampire your internal fuel tank.

Armed with this knowledge, block-book everything in your iStratus calendar for the coming week —and then work on what matters most.

Give Your Days Some Color

Color Coding, that is. Let’s consider work overload.

Various activities require diverse skills, involving different parts of the brain. Thus, it’s no surprise it can be difficult to juggle time and fit all of life’s business in. It’s not news that multiple tasks due simultaneously can become overwhelming, and cause a rise in blood pressure.

Phew!

If this sounds like you, why not begin planning your days by theme? iStratus allows you to:

  • Created colored categories on your calendar, making things more recognizable.

  • Dedicate an entire day to a colored theme.

  • Easily allocate a chunk each day to a project, highlight in one color.

This way, you’ll free up headspace with iStratus, because you’ll know what to cover and when.

The Importance of Gaps

The truth is, none of us have “time to kill”. Often, calendared items run back-to-back. It’s one class, meeting, or appointment to the next, without breaks.

However, regardless of how “flat out” situations seem, it is important to:

  • Incorporate at least fifteen-minute gaps on your calendar.

  • Use such moments to decompress or address factors arising from a previous meeting/appointment.

Or go hardcore. Of course, the choice is yours. The aim of your calendar is to achieve goals. Every meeting (no matter what form) should create connection, rather than small talk.

According to The Business Insider, Elron Musk once said:

“WALK OUT OF A MEETING OR DROP OFF A CALL AS SOON AS BECOMES OBVIOUS YOU AREN’T ADDING VALUE. IT IS NOT RUDE TO LEAVE, IT IS EXPECTED. IT IS RUDE TO HAVE SOMEONE STAY AND WASTE THEIR TIME.”

The Calendar Review

We all know, situations don’t always run as expected. Work commitments, seep into personal time. Today, it’s considered normalcy.

On the contrary, iStratus sees your time as being relevant. We recommend reviewing your calendar, every Friday to consider:

  • How closely your previous week’s calendar matches up with what your next one needs to look like. Plot progress;

  • Scheduling appointments and meetings that are a must, canceling anything irrelevant if you can;

  • How you wish to spend your time.

“WE MUST NOT ALLOW THE CLOCK AND THE CALENDAR TO BLIND US TO THE FACT THAT EACH MOMENT OF LIFE IS A MIRACLE AND MYSTERY.”

 ~ H.G. WELLS

You might lack full control over your working week specifies, but there are undoubtedly some weeds requiring attention, aka pulling to break the feeling of monotony.

Remember, your calendar is a clear representation of how you’re spending your time and where your priorities lie.

Using iStratus effectively will organize your days and allow you to accomplish more without burning out. Keep that synchronizing simple.

LIVE LIFE AND ROLL WELL WITH ISTRATUS.

Checklist Chatter

  • Check. 
  • Check.

  • Check.

How can one little word and symbol be so satisfying to see? We love the productivity of Checklists. Needless to say, a key purpose of the iStratus Organizer App and its Checklists ensure the process is even simpler.

Checklist or Not to Checklist?

Generally speaking, checklists entail a set of statements that correspond to specific criteria and indications of the action required. They may be “single-use” or designed for repeated usage.

With a single tap, a checkmark appears in iStratus Organizer App to keep your daily, weekly, monthly tasks in order, avoiding the backlog of those “To Do’s” that can overwhelm our lives.

Often it’s easier to prioritize things of importance and relevance when you apply checklists.  To checklist or not to checklist? Bottom line: Checklisting works.

6 Reasons Why iStratus Checklists Work:

PRODUCTIVITY IS PROVEN

  • When using checklists you’re likely to make fewer mistakes, as every action to be taken is clear and concise.

  •  Complete repetitive tasks more efficiently and quickly.

  • Increase productiveness with more time in a day to accomplish multiple important tasks.

ORGANIZATION BEATS THE DRAG

Organization is one of our favorite words and we hope that by using the iStratus Organizer it quickly becomes one of yours too.

With an accurately configured checklist:

  • No steps in a process will be skipped or forgotten

  • Multi-tasking remains more systematized

  • All your items and necessary tasks are synchronized in one place.

  • It allows effective scheduling so that nothing “slips through the cracks.”

DELEGATION RATHER THAN PROCRASTINATION 

  • Major tasks become smaller and more specific in terms of priority.

  • Providing comfort and confidence that all tasks will be completed more effectively and correctly, increasing yet again, our productivity.

MOTIVATION FOR SUCCESS

We’re not running a marathon to take out the Gold however, using iStratus for checklists motivate people towards success because they also:

  • Encourage us to take timely action and complete our daily tasks

  • Even with the smallest achievements and that faithful checkmark, our brains release dopamine, a positive chemical associated with enthusiasm, learning, and pleasure.

Evidence from The Harvard Business Review suggests we are more likely to repeat the activities that lead to success. (Yes, we are creatures of habit, who really just want to make the world a better place). Together in an ever-changing world, we use can motivation to do good and consciously be ready to accomplish greater things. iStratus strives to achieve better results, and we want you to be part of that too.

Creativity For Clarity

Ticking off a checklist results in less stress and fewer ‘Groundhog Day’ moments.

  • By mastering the tedious, repetitive tasks more effectively, you’ll be free and able to apply improved focus and brainpower for creative activities.

  • With a little extra free time and fewer things competing for attention within your mind, you will have greater clarity.

Excellence Is Fundamental

When nothing is forgotten, the quality of your work and life often exceeds expectations. Feel better about the daily grind.

Finding The Right Fit

Essentially there are three main types of Checklists:

  • Procedural Checklists: Highlight the steps that must be followed in sequential order;

  • Project Checklists: Indicate tasks that must be completed; and

  • Communication Checklists: Encourage communication in organizations, which is great for prioritizing those notes to support your weekly meetings.

With iStratus you can design a list that best fits the intended purpose. Feel free to click for yourself. The choice is yours.

Checks Equal Balance

Obviously, we want our App to simplify your life and provide a feeling of satisfaction, checks equal balance. In order to achieve this, our main tips, using the iStratus Checklist approach are:

  • Tick off checklists as you go

  • Allow your checklists to be flexible. It’s ok not to achieve every item at once!

  • Don’t micromanage yourself. Stick with the process. Trust in your direction. Not everything is always Black and White.

  • For the workplace, collaborate your ideas! Constructive feedback can be an invaluable part of the process for achieving goals.

Checking In With Your Checklist

There is always room for improvement. We practice what we preach, using our own iStratus tools.

Checklists are an invaluable tool and work in a wide variety of circumstances and industries.

Covering ground so that you are prepared for almost anything. Even highly complex tasks can feel like a walk in the park.

Will you begin some Checklist Chatter?

Brave it. Give it a Go. Checklist along with us.

“The constant free flow of communication amount us – enabling the free interchange of ideas – forms the very bloodstream of our nation. It keeps the mind and body of our democracy eternally vital, eternally young.”

 ~ Franklin D. Roosevelt

Live life and roll well with iStratus.

Keeping Calm Throughout The Crazy

What is your favorite ritual?

We all have a way of finding peace in our lives. Now, that’s not about connecting to one’s secret inner hippy, with all that light and love stuff.

Simply put, the busier, the crazier the world becomes around us, the more grounded we need to feel. Finding that sense of calm throughout the crazy, makes all the difference.

Who knows how life is going to turn out? Being organized is one approach that provides us with a sense of stability in this uncertain world. With iStratus we have the ability to be prepared and stay that way.

So… How Can We Keep Calm Throughout The Crazy?

WOULD YOU DARE TO APPLY THAT FAVORITE RITUAL, TO YOUR AGENDA?

The iStratus Organizer is here to help. Designed to keep you on track, with the multitude of tasks we’re expected to juggle –To Keep Calm Throughout the Crazy, finding that balance in your life.

With its multifaceted interface, you can easily and efficiently use the iStratus Organizer to:

  • Notate a clear “To Do” List, in order of priority, with a click of a button.

  • Generate reminders to send follow-up emails.

  • Effortlessly set multiple alarms to navigate schedules that always have you on the go. Whether it’s supporting your kids with multiple activities, or staying atop that crazy college schedule, iStratus has you covered.

  • Create seamless shopping lists for the household meal plan, which does not have to be complicated. Keeping it light, and easy.

  • Quickly coordinate appointments you need to attend for yourself. The process is as simple as you can get.

Leaving a little time for that favorite ritual. Yes, you should!

5 Benefits of Being Organized:

Remember, balance is always key. Thus, there are simultaneously 5 beneficial elements of being organized with iStratus for creating calm:

STRESS RELIEF

Experts suggest an endless list of “things to do” constantly invading your headspace is a major source of stress on the tipping scale of life. It may seem obvious (but not necessarily easy) that becoming organized lessens that pesky weight upon our shoulders.

Bustle.com says, one of the most productive things that can be done is simply tracking your day.

Anyone can take three hours to complete a task, largely because of the task itself or because of the interruptions allowed.

SIMPLE ADJUSTMENTS TO YOUR LIFESTYLE AND TIMING USING ISTRATUS CAN HELP REDUCE THE “STRESSORS” IN YOUR LIFE.

DE-CLUTTER, SLEEP BETTER

Clutter creates chaos. Even if you don’t realize it, clutter in your bedroom can result in the loss of Zzzzzzzz’s. Furthermore, if you are disorganized you may unintentionally become a night owl, staying awake later to do something last minute, or worrying about everything that needs to be addressed.

Use iStratus to de-clutter, schedule that time, and stick to it. Organize the clutter in your life to lessen that endless ‘chaotic craziness’ invading your precious dreams to sleep longer and deeper at night.

A HEALTHIER LIFESTYLE

When you’ve planned out your meals, you’re less likely to forget to eat,  avoiding hunger pangs, which flows through to impulsive consumption. You’re also more inclined to find motivation for physical fitness if you plan time on the schedule for it. Increase those necessary endorphins for better health. Who’s up for a triathlon?

ESSENTIAL ‘ME TIME’

We’ve finally arrived at that favorite ritual, we’ve mentioned! Perhaps it’s PB on toast or a warm cup of Tea? (Sometimes, the simplest things mean the most). We frequently leave ourselves until last! You can put yourself on your own agenda when you actually make time for it!

It’s difficult to be at your best for anyone else – family, friends, colleagues – if you’re running on fumes. Bustle.com advises, it doesn’t matter what you do – it matters that you do it.

Try the iStratus App for prioritizing time to do something you enjoy. Coffee anyone?

“Create the kind of climate in your organization [processes] where personal growth is expected, recognized and rewarded.”
 ~ Author Unknown
 

BE MORE PRODUCTIVE PROFESSIONALLY

Let’s be honest, disorganization is un-motivating. Along with clearing out the clutter in your home life, it also gives you the energy to focus on what’s required during office hours. If you’re feeling tired by four walls, try taking a few minutes to organize your iCalendar or filing your emails.

Did you know that iStratus easily allows you to file photographic evidence with paperwork for an appointment or task? Once it’s where it belongs, you won’t be yelling at your phone, whilst searching inboxes for the information you require at the Doctor’s Office.

A little effort goes a long way. Spending a few minutes each day getting organized makes a difference towards being healthier, happier, and calmer throughout the crazy!

Live life and roll well with iStratus.

iStratus DayPlanner – Organizing your life…with a twist

With the sheer demand on our time and volume of activities, tasks, meetings, appointments, schedules, contacts, and more, it’s easy to miss something. This seems like something technology should be able to solve but my iPhone has multiple apps designed to manage a portion of my life.  I want something to manage more than just one small piece.  I need my world to be interconnected and organized where my calendar, appointments, events and access to my documents and pictures all work together to enhance my life.   So this got me thinking, what features would a great organization app need to help me better manage my life?

What makes a great calendar and organizing app? 

  • Features that maximize my time like repeatable event management.
  • Access to quickly create and customize my calendar events.
  • A way to preview upcoming days, weeks, and months.
  • The ability to share calendars with my family and co-workers.
  • Personalization to easily customize my calendar using icons, colors, text and fonts.
  • The ability to sync across iOS devices and other services (Google, iCloud, Exchange).
  • Confidence to know all my calendar appointments and events are automatically added across all my Apple iOS devices including iPad, iPhone and iPod.
  • Voice recognition for easy updates on the go.
  • Security – after all, this is my personal information and I need to know it’s safe.
  • Simple and intuitive interface for easy use.

Time and Organization matters.

Time has become elusive for us all. With so many distractions—especially thanks to new mobile expectations—it’s easy to be overwhelmed. Organize your life and work to your habits, and you’ll find everything operates smoother. It’s just more productive…and less frustrating!

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Manage your life using iStratus DayPlanner…the all-in-one solution to organize your busy life across your mobile iOS devices.

Learn how at www.iStratus.com.

Stressed out with too much on your plate and not enough time? Try These 3 Steps.

Today you’re expected to do many things on-the-go using mobile devices with no real down time.  The expectations are for you to have instant access to your information. And the demands are increasing to be more effective in managing and planning your priories.  Your time is more precious than ever.

 

How are you going to keep up with this pace?

Take these three steps right now to accomplish more than seems possible:

1.) Take action.

Make a task list.

And, start with the goal in mind.

In The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, author Stephen Covey implores you to begin with the end in mind. While Covey was looking at the bigger picture, there is utility in this wisdom.

Create a to-do list, but flip it. Start from the final goal of your plans. Work backwards and map out the needs and actions to get from the end to the beginning. Do this, and you’ll have a task list that achieves your plans.

What’s more? This exercise makes even the most audacious plan much more attainable.

2.) Commit.

Schedule your tasks on your calendar.

And, be able to move them—automatically—just in case.

You know that saying? “What gets measured gets done.” It’s only partially right.

What gets put on your calendar…and stays on your calendar…even if timing needs to change? THAT gets done. These days, if it’s not on the calendar, it too easily gets lost in the shuffle of what’s most important.

Make the commitment, and put it first. Make sure it’s top-of-mind by getting it on the calendar. If you must move it? Make it automatic. Don’t delete it. Move it to the next day, and then don’t move it again if at all possible.

Put the time on your calendar, and you make the time yours.

3.) Plan ahead.

Gather everything you need for each step.

And, know where it is all the time.

Sometimes, you can simply take action: Just do it, and you’re done.

Most of the time? You need something. In those cases, information…or at least access to it…holds the key.

Today, most of your information is online. What happens when you can access it when needed instantly? You get more done, faster.

  • Plan ahead.
  • Have everything you need.
  • Keep it organized all in one place.

Do these things and you stop searching. When it’s most needed, you want to know exactly where it is.

If this this advice seems simple…well….that’s the point.

Time has become elusive for us all. With so many distractions—especially thanks to new mobile expectations—it’s easy to be overwhelmed.

Take these steps to add structure and organization, and you can get more accomplished and take control of your busy schedule.

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Create more time with iStratus DayPlanner…the all-in-one solution to organize your busy life across your mobile iOS devices.

Learn how at www.iStratus.com.