I have always found cats fascinating to watch. They transform from cute and cuddly companions to highly efficient hunters in the blink of an eye. If all my years of owning and watching cats, here are some time management lessons I have learned from them.
1. Be Curious
Cats love to learn. Leave a paper bag or a box open and you will quickly have your cat crawling into it. A lively curiosity in humans makes us ask better questions, and learn and explore more. Curious people are happier and are better employees because they often look for better ways to do things.
2. Take Risks
While living on the 14th floor of a high rise, I noticed a cat walking along the balcony railing a couple of apartments over. While I don’t recommending you start walking balcony railings on the 14th floor yourself, I think we can learn from cats to be to take more risks.
Cats often attempt jumps and fail. When they fail, they get back up and continue on. This is admirable and they succeed more because they are willing to fail and fall and get up and try again.
3. Have Minions
Dogs have masters. Cats have minions!
Cats are very efficient at getting others to do work for them. They have minions that feed them, groom them, provide them with attention, take them to veterinary appointments and even their bathroom is cleaned by minions.
What can we learn from this? Delegate the drudgery and routine parts of your work and personal life to free up time for the high value tasks only you can do.
4. Take Naps
When cats are tired, they take naps. Taking naps helps them replenish their energy for high energy activities later. (usually in the middle of the night while you are trying to sleep).
Similarly, we humans should learn that taking a nap when needed recharges our battery so we can get more done.
5. Pounce on Opportunities
Their lightning quick reflexes make cats quick to pounce when they are hunting or want to play. Similarly we need to be aware of our own opportunities and pounce on them before they go away.
6. Release Your Inner Lion
Cats are fearless! I have seen cats attack other animals 5 times their size. On YouTube, there are even multiple videos of cats attacking bears – and successfully scaring them off!
It’s like they don’t even know they are tiny house cats and have this weird belief that are as large as their lion or tiger cousins.
Fear holds us back in many areas of our personal and professional lives. What could you accomplish without fear?
7. Get a Better View
Cats love to climb and you might come home to find your cat perched on top of a book case or refrigerator – masters of all they survey.
Learning to looking at your work and life from a different perspective is useful to you as well. A different perspective gives you new insights and can even help you determine what activities are no longer useful to you.
8. Claim Your Seat
I get up from my chair to grab a drink from the kitchen. In the 30 seconds I was gone, my seat is now taken up by my cat. Cats aren’t shy about claiming their seat – perhaps we can learn from them to brazenly claim our own seat at the big table.
9. Don’t Care What Others Think
Cats are naturally “cool.” Your dog will try hard to please you and even look guilty if you catch them doing something they shouldn’t, but your cat just looks at you when you are upset at them. They really don’t care what you think.
We often worry too much about what others think instead of doing what we really want to do.
10. Be Flexible
Do cats even have bones? They fit in amazing places and their poses put expert yoga practitioners to shame. We can learn from this to keep ourselves physically and mentally flexible.
11. Be Heard
You’ve likely heard the phrase “The squeaky wheel gets the grease.” Well, a squeaky wheel has nothing over cats. Just TRY to ignore a cat meowing at you for it’s breakfast. Your cat quickly gets the attention it wants AND its breakfast!
Too often, we sit in the corner, afraid to offer our opinion, or to ask for a raise. Time to be your best cat and make your opinion heard.
12. Make Friends With Those Different Than You
I am always intrigued by how many animals will make friends with other animals very different from themselves. While not all pets get along, cats have been known to play and cuddle up to dogs, birds and a wide range of other creatures. Similarly, we can learn that we can all get along regardless of different beliefs, culture and experiences.
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