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Managing Your Time with White Space

Posted by Dr. Holly Latty-Mann on

Trying to do more with less?  Aren’t we all aiming to achieve the creative balance for our various work projects?  Jim Collins, author of  Level 5 Leadership, says he uses a stop watch to regulate his time, which creates pockets of white space in his day to be creative.

He “is all about discipline,” writes Bronwyn Fryer, of the Harvard Business Review Blog.  (Read the full article here.)  Collins blocks off time in his schedule where he is cut off from all electronics, including the internet, for creativity and writing.  He says he often uses this white space to clear his mind so as not to “confuse activity with productivity.”

Sounds like a luxury doesn’t it?  Think you can’t do it until you get that big break?  Well Collins used this same philosophy while writing his first book, Built to Last.  He even declined consulting opportunities to fulfill his scheduled white space creative time.

What do you think?  How do you add some creative, mind clearing white space into your schedule?  We want to learn from you.

  • I try to start with some quiet time first thing in the morning. What I find, though, is that I’m also distracted by checking email and other small tasks. I really love the idea of breaking away from the electronic connection to really be “in the moment”.