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50 years of time management

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I first came across the concept of Time Management fifty years ago (how can it be that long!) when working for an Insurance company. An annoying man appeared one day, employed by management, to figure out improvements in working efficiency for our team. I remember the unfair derision, but not the positive results coming from the exercise.
 
Some thirty years later, when applying for a job in the Civil Service, I had to provide written examples of where I had managed my time to good effect. These examples could include activities I had undertaken at home. Over the years the concept had extended beyond the world of paid work, to the managing of social and domestic activities.
 
With the advent of increased female employment, sometime in the nineteen eighties, the idea of “quality time” came into being. It is said that periods of undivided attention make up to the child, for the absence of the mother, sometimes for long periods of time.   It is now usual for children to be placed in day care from an early age.
Since the start of the pandemic and the first lockdown in March last year, some families have been able to work online from home, while at the same time attempting to home school their children, with material provided by the schools. Families have been in isolation for weeks on end. Some have been able to find some quality time together, while others have found the whole experience stressful. Multi-tasking is a very difficult way to manage time. 
 
In order to manage time efficiently, it has become increasingly recognised that there is a need for stress management.  This can be done by the individual in establishing a work life balance. Where this fails, it can impact on the individual, the family and the economy.   In 2019 work related stress, anxiety and depression accounted for more than half of the sick absence from work in the UK.  Managing sick absence therefore becomes a task for the employer, who will look for ways to reduce work stress, in order to achieve a successful return to work for the employee.
The concept of Time Management has therefore given rise to the further concepts of quality time, multi-tasking, stress management and the work life balance. 
 
The Cats in the Cradle song written in 1974 by Harry and Sandy Chapman tells of the total failure of one parent to manage his time, with extremely sad results for himself and his son. The boy grew up with the model of a father, who never spent any time with him. He resolved to be just like his dad. Consequently, when he grew up, he never had time to spend with his father, who regretted his choices too late. The importance of Time Management can never be overestimated, either at work or in the home.

In the nineteen sixties I worked in London stores. Worked as an Insurance Clerk in the City of London during the nineteen seventies. Divorced in the nineteen nineties. Now I am a retired Civil Servant, managing home and garden and escaping onto social media whenever possible.

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Home & Garden

Dressing for Comfort

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Since the advent of Covid, it is not news that people have been spending a lot more time at home. Social isolation and lockdowns have kept people indoors, some shielding, some on furlough and others working from home. This has inevitably had an effect on the choice of clothing for day wear, track suits replacing smart casual and suits for office workers. The recent heatwave endured in houses without aircon has had an added effect, with as many garments as possible, probably being discarded!
 
The actor Colin Firth recounted on a chat show (VIDEO HERE), an incident that had happened to him.  He said that he was wearing only “non presentation underpants” and fluffy pink slippers, when he had an accident. trapping his fingers in a sash window that slammed down on them,  when he was trying to open it. He tried calling for help to no avail, eventually breaking the glass and screaming for attention! A neighbour then came over the fence and finally rescued Colin, finding time to say how much he and his wife enjoyed his films. Other neighbours then turned up to view the scene! I am sure that many of us have suffered, hopefully, lesser embarrassment, when forced to answer the front door wearing clothes meant for our eyes only. 
I have a friend who always wants to look her best, even when alone in the house. This makes me uneasy skyping with her, as I have become aware of my own shortcomings.  I now feel obliged to powder my nose and change my T shirt, before viewing her from across the miles. 
 
In very cold weather, people experiencing fuel poverty may be forced to wear outdoor clothes in the house, in an effort to keep warm.  They dress for comfort as far as they are able, or at least to mitigate their harsh surroundings.  Extremes of weather can literally be a matter of life or death, affecting blood circulation when cold or causing dehydration during heat. 
 
On a less serious note, some people find comfort in old clothes and don’t mind wearing cardigans with holes in them or baggy trousers!
There are of course fashionable garments sold with holes in them and ripped. One is seen as a sign of poverty and the other of wealth.
 
Dressing for Comfort is essentially choosing clothes that facilitate concentration on work and enable relaxation. 

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Home & Garden

Can we agree that people hate losing things?

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At least I’ve never met anyone who says “I don’t mind if I lose something” in effect “Am I bothered?  However, It doesn’t seem to bother some people that much, as they keep on losing everyday items.  In the case of keys, these need to be found before leaving the house.
For some people, though, even the temporary loss of an item is a big deal and they may come close to “losing it” themselves. Apart from the irritation at being without the item, the loss undermines self-belief in competence and control over life.
 
Recently, I lost a full-length waist slip. This bothered me greatly. “How could such a large garment go missing?” I asked myself reprovingly. I retraced my steps to the last time I had seen it,  draped over a chair in the bedroom and later on a chair in the sitting room.  In hot weather, I had been wearing it around the house. (What people choose to wear when alone in the house, may be the subject of another story) Its loss bothered me throughout the Euro Cup semi-final and while Harry Kane, only had to score a penalty, I had to find my waist slip!
 
 
After the match, I scrabbled about for it under the sofa. No luck, it was nowhere to be found. I convinced myself that in a fit of enthusiasm about tidying up, I had thrown it away without thinking.  Yes, that was it. At some point, it is necessary to draw a line on searching and move on.
Of course, if the item has great sentimental value, such as a wedding ring, the loss will be especially hard to take, for reasons of grief as well as self-annoyance. Stories of rings turning up years later when gardening, sometimes make a news item. “There is the diamond, gleaming among the cabbages” reads the headline, ending years of hurt. 
 
I am happy to report a good result in the case of the slip that gave me the slip. Irritated with seeing it lying around, I had put it in with the items for handwashing. It was with deep joy that once identified, I lifted its dripping length out of the washbasin. I am glad to say that I had not totally lost it!

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Food

Here where you can find the best pizzas in the world

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50 Top Pizza , the most important sector guide has decided to confer an ad hoc prize to the chains of artisanal pizzerias , the Top World Artisan Pizza Chains 2021 – Latteria Sorrentina Award . 20 the brands present in the first edition of this special ranking with at least 5 locations.

The winner is the brand Da Michele , historic Neapolitan sign that counts well 19 sites
around the world, 8 in Italy and the remaining located in Britain, Spain, Germany, USA, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Japan. In second position another high-sounding name of the Neapolitan school, that of Sorbillo , which includes several stores throughout the peninsula, in addition to those in New York, Miami and Tokyo . Third, which arouses a great surprise, is the French Big Mamma Group , with numerous restaurants in France, in London and Madrid.

Pizzeria Da Michele

So far it has two sites in Britain and both are in London (Soho and Baker Street) that were opened a few years ago and have been well received. 

Immortalized in the film Eat, pray, love , with  Julia Roberts, the pizzeria Da Michele is a must-see if you go to Naples. Michele opened his first pizzeria in 1906 in the current headquarters of the Ascalesi Hospital, whose construction forced the pizzeria to move. In 1930 the pizzeria is moved to its current location in Via Cesare Sersale, often described by experts and journalists as “the sacred temple of pizza”.

Here is the best ten pizzeria chains in the world:

Top World Artisan Pizza Chains 2021 – Latteria Sorrentina Award :

1 Da Michele – Italy, Britain, Spain, Germany, USA, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Japan

2 Sorbillo – Italy and World

3 Big Mamma Group – France and UK

4 Berberè – Italy and Europe

5 Pizza Pilgrims – UK

6 Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana – USA

7 Bráz – Brazil

8 400 Degrees – Australia – USA

9 Peppina – Asia

10 Grosso Napoletano – Spain

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