Time Management Tip: The Art of Observation

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Photo of Paris, France, photography by R. Isip
Taking in the view from above…

Ever wonder if there’s an easier or better way to get what you want, when you want it?

Managing your time to your liking can be as easy as observing the world around you.

Today’s post encourages you to better manage your time by being an active observer of your immediate environment and finding ways to better use your time on your own terms.

Ready to get started? Here we go!

Observe your surroundings.

You can learn a lot of information by simply observing what is going on around you at any given point in time. Make mental notes of your surroundings to find recurring time patterns. You might take note of when it is the best time for you to:

  • Beat the height of AM rush-hour traffic?
  • Get a meal at your favorite restaurant with your friends when the crowd is just right and the food is fantastic?
  • Go shopping at a department store for a less frenzied shopping experience? (hint: Friday nights work remarkably well!)

When you’ve collected enough information about your surroundings, you can better plan and manage your time according to how you want to experience an environment.

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Do research.

Conduct simple research to find ways to maximize your return on time investment. Doing a little detective work via phone, online or in person can help you find the answers you need to make the most of your time. For example, if you are going to order lunch for you and your coworkers and want your food to arrive by noon, call the restaurant and ask, “When is the best time to place a lunchtime order in order have it delivered before noon?” A little bit of research will net you the information you need to plan your day. In this case, it might be making a plan to call in your orders by 11am, so you can have lunch delivered by noon.

Be open-minded.

Sometimes it’s not always possible to pinpoint when it’s a good time to get what you want, when you want it. Be open to new experiences; what you might find might shock you. You might accidentally find a better time to go shopping at the store when lines are short, to work out at the gym when the crowds are gone and so on. You never know what you might find!

Now to you…Have you ever used your powers of observation to better manage your time in a certain environment or situation? If so, how? Leave a comment below and join in the conversation!

Follow Rashelle:
Rashelle Isip is a New York City-based professional organizer and productivity consultant who helps people get organized so they can stress less, have more fun, and be happier at home. Her work has been featured in Good Housekeeping, Fast Company, Cosmopolitan, The Washington Post, Business Insider, and The Atlantic. Get access to her free guide, 10 Simple Ways to Make Your To-Do Lists More Effective, by clicking here.