By Cindy Perman, CNBC.com
We've all had those days: A failure to launch. Hit a wall. Too many interruptions. Got distracted. Whatever the reason, an unproductive day is maddening.
We've all had those days"People get caught up in the tyranny of urgent," explained Michael Crom, the chief learning officer at the Dale Carnegie Institute, a corporate training organization. "Texting. People popping into our office. Phone ringing … cellphone ringing … personal stuff … it can all lead to some pretty bad work habits."
That's right, like your overflowing inbox, or easy-to-steal password, the first step of an unproductive day is to admit that you - and your work habits - are a big part of the problem.
First question: Do you make a to-do list every day?
Next question: What do you do first?
"The tendency is to do the things I like to do first," Crom explained. "We all have time to jump on Facebook!" he quipped.
If you just start ticking off the things you like to do, instead of the important ones, guess what
Blog Posts by CNBC
By Cindy Perman, CNBC.comRead More »from How to Save an Unproductive Work Day
By Courtney Reagan, CNBC.comRead More »from Jason Wu Targets New Customers
Sunday is a big day in America.
Sure, it's Super Bowl Sunday - but for non-sports lovers, the Jason Wu collection launches in Target stores and online.
Designer Jason Wu attends the Jason Wu For Target launch at Skylight SOHO.Wu first earned fame for dressing First Lady Michelle Obama at the inaugural gala. Now he's teamed up with Target to offer an affordable line to dress the masses. The 53-piece collection is inspired by Wu's love of French new-age film. The collection includes apparel, handbags and scarves ranging in price from $19.99 to $59.99.
When CNBC asked the designer why he chose to work with Target for the collection, he said that he has always been a fan of what Target does.
"They are not just known for really great designer partnerships," Wu said. "They are really fashion design partnerships, they are known for great designs period. They are the originators of this designer collaboration - whether it be Missoni or me...It's a wide range of creative people. It felt like they were the people who would be able to
By Michelle Fox, CNBC.comRead More »from 12 Unique Dating Sites
There's someone for everyone...
As the saying goes, there's someone for everyone. Thanks to the Internet, love can be found at first click. But if the scope of general dating sites is overwhelming, don't fear. There's now an easy way to narrow the playing field, thanks to hundreds of niche dating websites that cater to almost any specialty imaginable.There are sites for practically every religion and ethnicity, and even sites for redheads and men with mustaches. But what if you're interested in someone who loves cats, is a Star Trekker or uses a Mac? Well, you're in luck. Click ahead to see 12 unique dating sites that may help you or someone you know find that special someone - in time for Valentine's Day, or any other day.
See the slideshow: 12 Unique Dating Sites
Meet an Apple fanboy or girl.Cupidtino.com
For those who love their Mac and would never consider dating someone who uses a PC, they can meet an Apple fanboy or girl on Cupidtino.com.The founders of the site claim that Mac
By Stephanie Landsman, CNBC.comRead More »from Apparel Retailers' High Voltage Bet on Neon
Saks Fifth Avenue is selling these super skinny jeans by AG Adriano Goldschmied in a fluorescent yellow.Electric blue jeans. Hot pink shoes. Lime green skivvies. Wear it like it's 1985. These are the colors the fashion industry wants you to add into your wardrobe this spring.
Retailers are rolling out an electrified color pallet hoping it'll add cheer to the racks and suggest a brighter outlook for a dull economy.
Retailers are trying to make the new normal of slow economic growth feel better, according to Eric Beder, a retail analyst at Brean, Murray, Carret & Co. So, it's in with the 1980's-inspired fluorescent colors and out with the greys, blacks and neutrals.
"These are the most aggressive colors we've seen in 15 years without a doubt in both men's and women's apparel," said Beder. "If it is successful, the retail segment will have a very good year. It's a radical change."
Both high-end and low-end retailers are hoping the trend adds sparkle to the bottom line.
Target is selling neon duffle bags and watches. Saks Fifth Avenue is showcasing
- CNBC | Work + Money – Mon, Jan 30, 2012 2:59 PM EST
Jennifer Leigh Parker, CNBC.comRead More »from Why Even 20-Somethings Are Worried About Retirement
Getting a car, finding a date, and starting a career are common concerns for your average twenty-something.
But today's 20 year olds, often called Generation Y or the Millennials, are also busy thinking about retirement.
Young American workers are not expecting Social Security or traditional corporate pensions to provide for their retirement. Their parents' lack of retirement readiness is also increasing their awareness, and acting as a wake-up call.
"My dad would love to retire at 65, but he's putting it off because of the swings in the aviation business. I'm concerned," said JoAnne Farrell, a 29-year-old web manager at a design firm in San Francisco.
Retirement readiness is decreasing with time. According to a new study by State Street Global Advisors, 2012 is the first year that assets invested in pension plans top those invested in 401(k) retirement savings plans. At the same time, the study finds that Generation X, or people in their late 30s
By Heesun Wee, CNBC.comRead More »from Fighting Middle Age? Try a Triathlon
It took John Korff seven years to bring an Ironman triathlon to New York; it took nine minutes for the 3,000 race slots to sell out.
Luke Bell, leads triathletes exiting the water after the 2.4 mile swim portion of the Ford Ironman World Championship on Oct. 8, 2011 in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.Korff, a sporting events producer who runs 100-mile races and the Empire State Building stairs for kicks, had been wrangling and wooing city officials to host the event, a 140.6-mile endurance sport, which includes swimming and biking - and a 26.2-mile marathon tacked on the end.
"I felt like a business therapist saying why they should do this," says Korff, owner of Korff Enterprises.
Fortysomethings and Older
Triathlons often exist in the shadow of marathons, the endurance-sport behemoth. But in recent years, more amateur athletes - especially those ages 35 and older - have discovered the sport as a social outlet, and a way to recapture their youth and fitness. The average triathlete is 38 years old, according to USA Triathlon, the sports governing body.
"These individuals are saying to themselves, 'I can still do the same
By Daniel Bukszpan, CNBC.comRead More »from Weird Celebrity Chef Endorsements
Paula DeenCelebrity chef Paula Deen has been a fixture on the Food Network since 2002. She's been teaching aspiring comfort-food cooks how to prepare their own decadent creations, which use butter, sugar and bacon as primary ingredients. On Jan. 17, 2012, she announced that she had been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.
Deen has claimed that the foods that she features on her shows and in her cookbooks are not meant to be eaten every day. "I've always said, 'Practice moderation, y'all.' I'll probably say that a little louder now," Deen said after disclosing her diagnosis. However, a high-fat diet is a major risk factor for the disease, so the food she was famous for was the most likely culprit for her condition. Furthermore, it turned out that the diagnosis was 3 years old, and she had kept on hawking her deep-fried cheesecakes anyway.
She also announced that she had become the spokeswoman for the anti-diabetes drug Victoza, putting her in the unique position of
- CNBC | Shine Food – Fri, Jan 27, 2012 1:37 PM EST
What does the hot dog adventurer get in exchange for their $100? (That's Canadian dollars, which is roughly equivalent to U.S. dollars, but it helps to be little exotic when you're spending a lot of money.) The Dragon Dog consists of a pork bratwurst infused with Rémy Martin Louis XIII Cognac, which contains elements up to a century old and sells for anywhere from $1,900 to $2,500. Why? "Cognac and pork go hand in hand," says Dougie Luv.
The bratwurst is sautéed in olive and truffle oil, placed on a sourdough sweetbread bun, and topped with Kobe beef, fresh lobster, tomatoes, truffles, aoli and a hot sauce that is "just a little spicy."
In week one of the Chinese new year, demand has been strong. Luv's restaurant, DougieDog, sold four Dragon Dogs on Wednesday when it debuted, and Luv reported having 10Read More »from Hot Dog! Meet the World's New Most Expensive Hot Dog
By Daniel Bukszpan, CNBC.comRead More »from The Man-cession and the He-covery
During the height of the recent financial crisis, a new term entered the lexicon of pop economists and established number-crunchers alike --- "man-cession." This term refers to the loss of jobs among men, which occurred at a higher rate than it did among their female counterparts.
The data bears out this disparity. "Over the course of the official recession, men lost twice as many jobs as women," says Heather Boushey, Senior Economist at the Center for American Progress. She attributes this to the hammering that the male-dominated construction and manufacturing sectors took in the economic meltdown.
Fortunately, things finally seem to be turning around for the dudes. "Since the economic recovery began, as defined by the National Bureau of Economic Research to be June 2009, private-sector employers have hired 503,000 men," Boushey said in March 2011. "Over the economic recovery so far, men have seen especially strong job gains in professional and business
By Jennifer Leigh Parker, CNBC.comRead More »from At-Work Wellness Boosts the Bottom Line
The real motivator for Americans to get fit at work isn't smaller jeans - it's a bigger bank balance.
Survey results show that employers who invest in wellness programs see increased employee retention, attendance, and productivity.Employees enrolled in workplace wellness programs report reduced personal healthcare costs, most commonly because of fitness center discounts and free preventative screenings, according to the findings of a recent survey by Principal Financial Group.
While the survey does not quantify the dollar amount of costs saved per employee, Principal's research does attempt to do so on the corporate level.
Survey results show that employers who invest in wellness programs see increased employee retention, attendance, and productivity. The numbers show that medical costs improve "by an average of $3.27 and absenteeism costs improve by an average of $2.73 for every dollar spent on wellness."
Thus far, large corporations have led the charge.
"We get gym discounts, and flu shots in-house. Our health insurance coverage is also quite good. But I couldn't imagine