Seven Tech-Free Keys to Trump the Electronics Ban We've listed seven proven keys -which don't involve a glowing screen- to make you better prepared for success when you land than when you departed.

By Murtaza Manji

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It's not a stretch to say that there are many professionals in the Middle East who are shuddering at the thought of being stripped of their laptop for a +13 hour flight to the United States.

The infamous electronics ban, enforced when travelling from select countries to America, appears to have all but blocked the business productivity most of us rely on in-flight. Though the ban is scheduled to cease by October 2017, what can we do until then not to waste our precious time in commute?

To attack this question, we've listed seven proven keys -which don't involve a glowing screen- to make you better prepared for success when you land than when you departed.

1. Write
A number of studies claim writing things by hand not only increases our ability to retain and remember key information, but also helps us to think critically about what we're penning.

This "critical thinking" piece is a tremendous advantage, as unconventional thinking allows for greater insights, better application, and preparedness for questions clients which that may be outside our initial scope of preparation.

A fluid and flexible understanding of our strategies keeps us better prepared to capitalize on golden, yet sometimes unexpected, business opportunities.

The last word: handwriting helps us create a better mental flowchart for dealing with things that come our way. Work on your ideas- the old-fashioned way.

2. Visualize
Several great athletes and businessmen "see" themselves victorious before the game or meeting and become convinced of their success in the near future.

This technique works so well, in part, because the person using visualization isn't merely hoping to have a good meeting, they're projecting a strong positive outcome onto the situation.

"Seeing" yourself at the mountain top can give you the extra edge of confidence and energy we know can be the difference in swaying our prospects or clients.

The last word: visualization isn't used to replace preparation. It is used to invoke the realization that this deal, merger, negotiation is anyone's to win- and he who prepares completely gains the competitive advantage.

Related: Will You Thrive in the Trump Economy?

3. Rest
In a fast-paced economy, statements like "rest is for the weak" are tossed around all too often. This prevailing logic has become so popular that the phrase "rest can make you a better worker" almost seems counterintuitive.

Admittedly, there are times we have to finish that proposal, presentation or report. But these are sprints, not the marathon. If we want to have big business success we need to carve out time for the things that help us improve.

The last word: never-ending labor is the trait of a worker bee. Champion efficiency over exhaustion and get some rest so you can strive for high-level growth.

4. Reflect
People buy from people. Most people like happy people. Therefore, as a person selling something, it helps to be... (drumroll) happy.

The importance of positive energy when selling (anything) is a widely accepted notion. Yet, the benefits of -and secret to- sustainable happiness is rarely discussed in how it can impact business. Consistent studies have shown happiness is more linked to gratitude than accolades or possessions.

Hustling for more this or that isn't a negative. But linking your present happiness to potential future outcomes can leave you lacking in this moment.

The last word: practicing gratitude- by something as simple as writing a few things you're grateful for everyday helps you not only become more aware of joy in the present, but opportunities to carry that great energy into your business encounters.

Related: Why Small Business Owners and Buyers Support Trump's Plans to Renegotiate Trade Deals

5. Read
So you can't work on the business while on the flight... How about taking the time to work on yourself?

We have the freedom to waltz right into the airport bookstore, grab some highlighters and whatever's at the top of the business bestsellers list.

Take your book, dog-ear pages, highlight gems, scribble notes, write ideas in the margin. Our aim as entrepreneurs isn't just reading to say we've read. We want the information we think could help transform our business.

The last word: get the most from your reading by approaching the literature with the thought: "What in here can help me better my business?"

6. Hit The Mental Gym
We live in an age of convenience. This is great, but since your brain functions like a muscle, it needs exercise to be its best. And the truth is our mental muscles become weak if we don't give them attention.

To remedy this, secure a book of brain games, crosswords, word search, Sudoku, spot the difference (my favorite), puzzles, mazes and/or riddles!

The last word: games that make the brain work will help improve your mental agility, quickness, and memory. I believe we all know how much of an advantage this can be in life and business.

7. Ideate
This is your chance to dive deeply into a topic you feel is promising. Is it a marketing plan for your business? A second location? Your next entrepreneurial venture?

Whatever it is, jot down 10 ideas on the specific subject and really stick with it until you get to (at least) 10.

The last word: we want to challenge our brain to think of as many quality ideas as possible on a given subject, so we will understand our concept more deeply, and set parameters around our actionable items. The first 3-5 ideas usually come easy. Push for 10 to really get that brain sweating!

The takeaway
When seeking ways to beat the electronics ban, it helps to remember: lucrative deals and business relationships were being made long before the invention of screens.

Keep these seven (highly effective) tech-free keys in your toolkit and while others grumble and whine you'll be getting yourself and your business better prepared for the future.

Related: Tech Workers Vow to Never Help Trump Build Muslim Registry

Murtaza Manji

Founder, Kaizen Consulting Group

Murtaza Manji is an award-winning business coach and the founder of Kaizen Consulting Group ( Over the last 10 years, Murtaza and his team have worked with over 950 successful CEOs, directors and business owners from a range of industries in the GCC, UK and East Africa to achieve sustainably higher profits, greater productivity from their teams, and attract high-value investments and acquisitions, by creating scalable systems and structures.

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