How to fit development into your busy life

There is a wealth of information available on the internet and elsewhere these days.  How many times have you registered for a Webinar or sent off for a free download and it sits on your pc because you never have the time to read or watch it?  Here are three tips to manage your time to incorporate the essential activities of personal and business development.

1.  File all of your reading library in an electronic folder and/or a special hard copy folder.  Keep it to hand and whenever you go out, pop the folder in your bag and use waiting time to read the material. 

2.  Download material onto an MP3 player or CD and play it when driving.  One of the Highflyingdivas calls this her “mobile university”.  It is nice to listen to the radio, however it would be hard to categorise this as professional or business development.

3. Better yet, use regular “waiting” time to focus on a new learning goal.  I used to print off my emails and read them on my long commute until I decided to look at this time as my “self-improvement time”.  I then planned the time to learn something new (in fact much of my MBA was completed on the train!).  A colleague of mine was bemoaning the fact that he wanted to write a book but didn’t have the time.  I challenged him to always use his time on the train to develop the book – whether thinking of the contents page or writing a paragraph or two.

Email me and let me know what you have learnt, read or developed in this way at

If you wish to see my tips this week, here is the video.
The Week:  On Tuesday I went to the IoD Suffolk’s Open Evening.  I am a member of the IoD and regularly attend the Essex events but wanted to meet some new members.  On Wednesday, I attended the CIPD Christmas networking in Ipswich (one road away from the evening before!).  I then drove over to Chigwell on Thursday to watch a “Mock Employment Tribunal” run by Mullis & Peake LLP.  It featured a sex discrimination case and was an extremely effective method of learning.  The hosts were very professional and we all received a copy of the tribunal papers tied in recognisable legal ribbon.  The legal profession certainly holds artistic talent and reminded me of the use of actors by some of the larger consultancy firms to deliver role-play tutorials.  My key takeaway was the importance of clear policies and processes that everyone knows.  Not onerous to deliver but potential high cost if ignored.  Friday was launch day for The Leadership Forum with our event in Colchester.  I gave an insight into the basics of leading change.  Comments included “great input from todays leadership forum listening to other members describe their challenges was just as valuable as them giving me suggestions to my own”  Ivan Newman, Living Inside the Brand.  ”

“Thank you for this morning, an inspirational, enjoyable and the much-needed time out from being in my business to think about my issues and where I should be spending my time to help both sustain and grow my business.” Steve Austin, Junari.  The next meeting is on the 8th Feb in Chelmsford.  We also have a LinkedIn Group called The Leadership Forum.

Recommended Reading.  Another of our Highflyingdivas, Jan Marchant, recommends “Brilliant NLP, What the most successful people, know, do and say” by David Molden & Pat Hutchinson.  This book promises “brilliant outcomes” in the form of understanding and mastering NLP and learning how to change your thinking and apply it to your life. 

Lighter Reflections.  Well it’s that time of year again – yes, I mean Christmas Lists.  Oddly enough this ]is the first year that my son, Guy, 1) does not believe in Father Christmas and 2) has therefore written a Christmas List.  When I used to ask him if he was writing to Santa he would reply “No, he knows what I want coz he always gets it for me”.  This year we again had the last-minute addition to the list.  Guy went for a trial drum lesson at school.  He loved it and of course a drum-kit was added to the list.  James offered to drive me to a client and said that he would “take a look at the dum shop” with Guy.  I questioned whether Guy needed to be there but thought maybe fitting etc would be needed.  I sternly instructed him not to buy anything.  You’ve guessed it, when I was collected, there was little boy, grinning from ear to ear, firmly wedged in the back seat amongst drums, symbols etc etc.  Right,, I thought, Plan B -“OK, but its being packed away for Christmas” I warned.  An hour later as I was downloading emails, I heard the tattoo beat coming from Guy’s room.  I don’t know who is the bigger kid – James or Guy.  Now all I have to do is decipher James’ Christmas list in which he requests a “TrackIR S Pro+ Vector Cap”.  Huh?    More worryingly when I offered to write mine, they both replied “No need”.  I’ll let you know! You can find more at me on Twitter:- Follow me on Facebook:

About RosemaryCC

Leadership Coach and Management Consultant helping you to clarify your goals and achieve success in your career or business. Also founder of Highflyingdivas and the Leadership Forum
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4 Responses to How to fit development into your busy life

  1. Hi Rosemary.

    Great tips. I particularly like the ‘Hard Copy’ folder tip as I’m sure we all have waiting time we could use.

    Jeff Turnbull

  2. Hi Rosemary

    What great tips and very simple to use.

    I particularly like #3 = The use of the ‘Hard Copy’ folder as I’m sure we all have ‘waiting’ time that we can use more productively.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Jeff Turnbull

  3. Hi Rosemary
    Thanks for your tips, keep them coming. Somtimes it’s easier to watch a little video clip rather than churn through lots of text.
    Great..have a good Christmas. xx

  4. mariegrueber says:

    Great ideas, Rosemary,
    I did most of studying for my exams on the train when I was at uni.
    However, I drive to work now, so I try to use the time for positive visualisation of the day ahead of me. That helps.
    I’ve also discovered a great book -‘ The power of no’. All about making space & time for the things you really want in your life.
    Have a lovely Christmas.

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