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HCI Webinar: Looking Forward to Monday Mornings, with Merideth Mehlberg

In the latest HCI Webinar, Dr. Jonathan H. Westover talks with Merideth Mehlberg about looking forward to Monday mornings. Below is a summary of the main points from their conversation! Check out the full episode and let us know what you think!


Watch the episode here:


Quick Recap


Jonathan and Merideth discussed the need for a mental reset due to ongoing disruptions. They emphasized the importance of identifying what's most important and not sticking to old ways, especially in the rise of AI. They highlighted the significance of better utilizing downtime, tackling challenges head-on, and noticing what drains and energizes oneself.


Mental Reset and AI Disruptions


Jonathan and Merideth discussed the need for a mental reset due to ongoing disruptions, with Merideth emphasizing the significance of identifying what's most important and not sticking to old ways, especially with the rise of AI. They agreed that these disruptions are leading to a streamlined approach to business and life. Jonathan proposed that listeners could start to utilize their downtime better and tackle challenges head-on with a mental reset. The conversation then shifted to personal well-being, with Merideth suggesting Jonathan start noticing what drains him and what energizes him, and to focus on the latter.


Prioritizing Tasks and Taking Action


Jonathan and Merideth had a conversation about the importance of taking control of situations and prioritizing tasks to make work more exciting. Merideth emphasized the value of taking "imperfect action" to avoid paralysis due to the fear of making mistakes. They discussed the process of decision-making and action-taking in problem-solving. Jonathan shared insights about his listenership, revealing that the average age of his listeners is in the early forties, based in English-speaking countries, and employed in various roles across different types of organizations. Merideth suggested the use of quick and dirty drafts to reduce effort in tasks. At the end of the discussion, Merideth shared how the audience could connect with her and learn more about her work.


Career Fulfillment and Monday Blues


Jonathan and Merideth discussed the reasons why people dislike Mondays, and how to shift one's perspective to find more fulfillment in their careers. Merideth shared her insights from her book, which identifies seven behavior patterns that hinder career transformation. She emphasized the importance of feeling in control and understanding the purpose of one's work, and how these can contribute to a more positive outlook towards work. They also acknowledged the impact of external factors such as political and social turmoil, technological disruptions, and the pandemic on people's feelings towards their careers.


Work-Life Balance and Self-Care Strategies


Jonathan and Merideth discussed strategies for achieving work-life balance and re-energizing oneself during downtime. Merideth emphasized the importance of defining a personal 'North Star', a set of values and goals that guide one's career choices and uphold one's values. She stressed the importance of taking time to reflect on one's own needs and desires, and using these as a rubric for navigating work decisions. Merideth also highlighted the need for self-care and replenishment, such as engaging in restorative activities outside of work and delegating tasks to others at work to increase energy and stamina.


Values Alignment and Mindfulness in the Pandemic


Jonathan discussed the challenges of aligning personal values with societal expectations, highlighting the need for self-reflection and mindfulness to identify and address misalignments. He noted that the pandemic forced people to reevaluate their priorities and values, including in the workplace, where leaders were forced to question traditional practices.


Listen to the webinar here:



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