Sick leave 101: Online housekeeping in 2 hours or less

Today I have spent most of the day trying to get over a horrible man-flu – given to me by my wonderful children!  Unfortunately when I am on sick leave the boredom kicks in pretty quickly and I tend to gravitate online to to keep occupied.  Here is what I did today…

Step 1 – look for inspiration

This step is pretty easy… since I missed out on my usual feed of podcast content whilst commuting to work, I had a quick scout around the web looking at some inspirational content from some of my favourite authors like Steve Sammartino, Tom Peters, Seth Godin.… and listening to a few podcasts from the likes James Altucher, and the crew at Beers, Blokes, Business

Lots of good content there to knock a chesty cough for six!

Step 2 – inspiration into actions

A consistent theme across all of those authors/channels was that it is really important to take control of your work online.  Now you can unpack that a number of different ways – but the things that I took away from it were:

  1. You should own your name online.
    Not LinkedIn, not Twitter, not Facebook.  At the moment in my part of the world this blog which sits at http://www.paul-woods.com is on the second page of results for Paul Woods – yep – I am a NOBODY!  My Linkedin profile, Twitter feed and Facebook timeline all rank higher.   This needs to change!
  2. You should own the content you produce online. 
    I have a few blogs around the place – some lie very dormant (like this one has for a while), some are quite low maintenance – like my Microsoft Office tips and tricks blog – whilst some a quite fresh like my new site where I am documenting the things I learn about my new Zoom H4n Handy Recorder.  Across just the three blogs mentioned above, I have written over 400 pieces of content in the past 8 or 9 years – a small back catalog of good (and not so good) content.  But according to Google, you couldn’t really attribute that content to me.  This needs to change!
  3. You should own your future
    Today, I have a great job where I have developed over time and had the opportunity to do some truly amazing things, and learn from some amazing people.  For example over the past four years I have been given enough rope and support to create a business inside the larger corporate machine – and have experienced the good and the bad of raw intrapreneurship – where I transformed what was simply a hobby – my Office tips and tricks blog into a “7 figure, profitable, employing a team of people” business.  But I know for sure that I will not still working at the same place when I retire at 40/50/65/70/80.   To survive/be comfortable in the future, where businesses are redefining what work is for the middle class… you can’t pretend to rely on employment forever.  I have been pretty comfortable to date.  This needs to change!

Step 3 – actions into execution

Yep… all of that needs to change.  But what is the first step?  Good question.  I thought I would share what I have done in the past 2 hours to kick start “turning the ship around”

  1. Wrote this article!  And committed to myself (and you) to write more articles like it which are more focused on where I want to be tomorrow.
  2. Ensured that I had some basic Search Engine Optimisation occurring on my WordPress blogs.  In this case I simply used the All-in-one SEO Pack for WordPress which does some pretty nifty things out of the box, but one thing in particular that I like is that it made it really easy for me to set up…
  3. Google Authorship.  Clearly identifying Paul Woods as the author of stuff that Paul Woods has created online.  This meant getting familiar with something that (to be honest) I had disregarded in the past – Google+.  Whilst there is little value for me in circles at the moment (as not many of my friends or family are there) – the fact that my Google profile acts as the glue between all my content – both text and video – is a good thing.
  4. 30 minutes Exploring other ways to raise / curate my profile and learn at the same time.   Top of the list was becoming a “author” – well as close to an author you can be without a publisher behind you.  I am thinking about taking some of the best content from my Office tips and tricks blog and turning it into a easy to consume Amazon Kindle title.  It will take some work, but a “as traditional as you can almost get” book published via Amazon.com is a great artifact that adds credibility to your story, what ever it is.  You can help me craft the first title by filling in this quick survey

So there you have it – 120 minutes of time that I let my body and mind rest from work, and applied some creative thought to the world I live in.  A little bit of future proofing for the years ahead.  You should give it a go too next time you are unwell and trying to stop the spread man flu and your addiction to a regular salary.

Paul W

Nigel Marsh on Work-life Balance

One of my favourite videos from TED… this presentation by Nigel Marsh at TEDx Sydney is an interesting perspective on the idea of practical work-life balance.  Managing your boundary between work and home, and how small changes in your approach to your day can positively influence your relationship with your family, and yourself.

 

What small changes are you planning to make today to swing the balance back in your favour?