Inspirational tips and thoughts to motivate and stimulate thought.

Work with entertainment

Make undesireble tasks more bearable

Do you have a certain task/chore that you just do not like to do? Washing dishes? Taking out the trash? Writing reports? Doing research? We all have certain tasks that make us cringe before we even start to do them. Since these tasks are not always avoidable we need to find a way to do them that makes them more bearable. Mixing something you like with something you don’t could do just the trick and in this age of entertainment and social networking we can easily do just that.

Accompany it with music

Work Entertainment MusicMusic is one of the easiest forms of entertainment to incorporate into work. You can control the volume so that it is not too disturbing and it does not  restrict your movement. You can also choose the type of music to correspond with your mood. Listening to your favourite artist may just help you get through the undesirable task a little easier, or at least boost your mood while you are doing it.

Make a game out of it

Work Entertainment TimeHave you ever wanted to throw away a piece of paper but didn’t want to get up so you end up playing basketball with a ball of crushed paper and the trash bin? If not, the idea is that changing a chore into something entertaining will encourage you to complete it. A more productive game than paper basketball would be a time challenge. Trying to accomplish the task within a certain amount of time to match or beat “your record” could provide a challenge. This encourages you to increase productivity and the quicker you finish the undesirable task the more time you have for other things.

Do it with someone else

Work Entertainment TeamWe know the saying “misery likes company” and in this case the saying is true. A task can be more bearable if you do it with someone whose company you enjoy. The positive attitude of a co-worker or companion can help you get through the drudgery of a task. Having someone to talk to while doing work can also be therapeutic. Just ensure that the person has the right attitude and is willing to help rather than distract. Choosing to work with someone who wants to gossip may not be counter-productive.


Inspirational Art

Inspirational Art: Marcello Barenghi Drawings

Youtube How To Draw Fried EggInspiration can come from many sources and we can all learn from the talents and experiences of others. As  a graphic designer I am interested in many different forms of creating art. Photography, illustration, image editing and videography all help in artistic expression. This is why I was so impressed when I saw samples of work from artist Marcello Barenghi on Colossal.

The artist’s time-lapse videos show how he moves from a blank canvas to some pretty realistic drawings of everyday objects. You can browse his catalog on his YouTube channel, his website or his deviantart page. This work is inspirational for anyone who likes to draw or likes to see how art is made. The number of tools needed and attention paid to detail demonstrates what hard work and determination can achieve.



Monday Blues

Avoiding Monday blues

Monday CalendarNot everyone has a dream job and many people find that Monday is the most depressing workday of the week. It signifies the end of the weekend and a return to a work environment which may or may not be comfortable. While each individuals mileage may vary there are a few things you can do to help curb the Monday blues and start your week off on a positive note. A positive attitude towards Monday can yield results throughout the week creating a ripple effect that makes your job more bearable.

1. Be punctual

It may seem strange that the first step is to get to work early on a Monday if you are dreading the end of the weekend. Being punctual allows you to get in the groove of work and prepare for the day both physically and mentally. Getting to work late or exactly on time means you have to rush and jump right into work as soon as you arrive which is counterproductive. Not to mention, your punctuality will be one less issue for your boss to ponder about first thing in the week.

2. Get in a state of mind work

It may take a while to get out of the weekend mood and back into a work mood. Pray, meditate, count to 10, do whatever routine you need to get back into the work mood. You may want to make a to do list or remind yourself of your objectives. This helps you develop the mental strength and determination to get through the day.

3. Get up to speed

Check your mail, complete stray tasks from last week and organize for the day’s activity. This could be a simple task of tidying your workspace or finding out how a previous shift went. You should be aware of anything that may have happened over the weekend that may affect your job.

3. Consider co-workers

Everyone may not have had the great (or terrible) weekend that you had so you should be considerate of others feelings. Sharing your weekend experience may be exciting to you but others may not be interested, especially if thier weekend experience was negative. Be careful not to gloat or boast to others if you were not asked about your experience. Knowing your coworkers you may be able to tell who would be interested in hearing your stories.

5. Expect the unexpected

Do not expect the week to start off perfectly and that everything will just fall into place. Expect traffic, delays, unexpected tasks and any number of unwanted situations to pop up. Having in mind that these things will happen will help you be better prepared to handle them and prevent you from being completely blindsided.

Happy Monday and let me know in the comments if these tips work for you.

SeizerStyle Designs Founded

From hobbyist to genuine business

SeizerStye LogoI started SeizerStyle Designs after high school when I became interested in designing websites. My sister gave me a book entitled HTML for Dummies and by going through this book I learned how to create websites using NotePad and a web browser. I created personal websites which worked locally and continued to learn about HTML, CSS and other technology related to website design. Back then it was not a business but a hobby which I enjoyed doing in my free time. Designing websites was much easier than the object oriented programming which I had been taught in high school so I enjoyed the quick progress.

Eventually I began getting customers based on word of mouth. At that point I realized that I needed a business brand  in order to freelance effectively and promote my services. On June 11, 2004 I uploaded the first version of the SeizerStyle website. I was proud that it was strictly hand coded and that I now had a live website to point potential clients to. A few years later I registered the SeizerStyle Designs business name as I continued to invest into my business venture.

WebsiteP ortfolio

I had no capital when I started SeizerStyle Designs and the business was initially funded strictly from the profits of designing websites for clients. I continued to freelance until I got other employment and have continued to grow and nurture the company since then. There have been  ups and downs but the business has managed to survive for 10 years without any external investment of capital besides what I have contributed from my savings.

Although I never took a break from the business, there have been slow times when I had to prioritize furthering my education and keep myself educated and informed about the industry and marketing. This was not easy since I like to see progress and would have liked to devote more time into the business. I do not regret this thugh, since I have learned many lessons which can directly be applied to SeizerStyle Designs to improve its services in both quality and quantity.

Just starting a business is much easier than running a successful business and maintaining that success over a long period. It takes hard work and long hours to run a business and it is even more difficult if you are doing it alone. In my opinion, the joy of being your own boss and creating a product/service that satisfies your customers’ needs trumps that though. I would encourage anyone with a passion and dedication for a business to pursue their entrepreneurial spirit. Do not expect instant success but be willing to persevere and weather the storm while you make your business profitable. It is a risk but a risk that all successful entrepreneurs have to take.


Avoid Negative Energy

How to fight negative energy

Avoid NegativityWe all have bad days and our moods can affect us as well as others around us. One of the best ways to maintain a good mood is to avoid people and things that we know put us in bad moods. This proactive step puts us is control of our happiness instead of simply reacting to external influences. Simply deciding not to let anything ruin our mood is a good first step to consciously guarding our emotional state.

Negative energy can change our moods in obvious ways as well as subconsciously. The heated argument or the more subtle bad driving experience can both affect our mood. By avoiding negative  energy instead of dwelling on it we reduce the likelihood of it taking control of our mood. Here are a few tricks I use when I am getting annoyed and angry:

  • Go for a walk – the temporary change of environment and the physical activity of walking can be very therapeutic.
  • Listen to music – never underestimate the power of your favourite artist to relate to you when others can’t.
  • Talk to a friend – the negative energy of individuals can be countered by the positive energy of a good friend. That friend just may be able to cheer you up.
  • Think of things that are going right– it is very difficult to stay positive in trying times, but it is also very easy to focus on the negative and ignore the positives. Focusing on what has gone right can help bring things back into perspective.

There is no silver bullet for negative energy. These steps may not always work or it may require a combination of these steps for them to be effective. Please share your own steps for staying positive in trying times in the comments below.

5 Tips to keep motivated through slow times

Running MotivatedEveryone has down times and every business has slow periods. It can be very difficult to go through these rough times and maintain your zeal and passion. There are times when I am swamped with work and don’t know where to start. On the other hand, there are times when I wish I had more clients and that I could be more productive. I have compiled a list of things which help me to stay motivated and inspired even when things are slow and my mood is not the best.

1. Focus on your goals

Nothing can motivate you to put your best foot forward today than the promise of a better tomorrow. Keep your goals in mind when things look down and remember that sacrifices today may pay dividends in the future. Align your actions to your goals and the tasks that you perform may seem a bit more bearable since you have an idea of the benefits they can accomplish.

2.  Use Time Management Aids

Time management is often touted during busy times when we are overwhelmed but can also help in slow times as well. The stress of not knowing what to do or what to prioritize can be combated with simple time management tools. I regularly use ToDoist as a task manager to schedule tasks and remind me of what I need to get done. I can schedule recurring tasks and get reminders on my phone. You can also use a simple calendar and task list from Google Calendar or Outlook. These tools can help you to plan in advance for slow periods and get those tasks you are normally to busy to perform accomplished.

3. Diversify your efforts

Monotony is a main cause of boredom because we get tired of doing the same thing over and over again.  This problem is amplified when things are slow and there are not many obvious alternatives. This may be a perfect opportunity to try something different or try doing ordinary tasks in a different way. This may not come naturally so you may have to do some research and some learning before you can master new techniques and skills. Ultimately you may find a more efficient way of doing an everyday task or at least learn different approaches to solving a problem.

4. Find Productive Distractions

We all need to get away sometimes and taking a break can be relaxing as well as a surprisingly inspirational experience. If you have ever had a great idea in the shower, through a dream or while taking a walk you can relate. The key to this tip though is that the distraction must be productive. Reading a book may offer inspiration or relax you as would taking a walk. Gossiping at the water cooler would not really be productive. Talking to someone about a task at hand may over some new insight though.

5. Help someone else

Helping someone else may not directly help your problem at hand but the benefits of your altruism may indirectly affect your mood and open you up to reciprocal assistance. This does not mean that you should help others with the hope of getting something in return though. Just helping someone else allows you to accomplish a task regardless of how minuscule it may seem. The more tasks you accomplish the more confident and fulfilled you become allowing you to tackle your own problems with more enthusiasm. Not to mention, you may just make someone else’s day that much better.

What are your own tips for staying motivated in slow times? Let me know in the comments.