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7 Ways to Improve Observation Skills

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Hey, this is Rajiv Kumar Luv Trainer, Coach, Workshop leader, Author, podcaster, Youtuber and founder of The Personality Boss which conducts the Ultimate Personality Development Program, Course, Coaching, Training and Workshops in Mumbai. I help you design the life you want. The articles that I post on my blog also have one purpose in mind “Leadership through Personality Development” Now over to the article…

The Personality Boss

When I worked as a production manager in a leathergoods company in Madras in the late 70’s I was awed by the observation skills of my boss and Managing Director, Mr. Dhingra, from a distance about 10 feet he would point out at a particular wallet saying that the stitching was not proper, then he would point out another one saying the embossing on it was crooked, he would run to the guy cutting leather on the machine and show how the leather was getting wasted. He was absolutely right most of the time but I wondered how come I don’t see all the things that he sees, it obvious that his observation skills were very sharp and keen probably because his stake was higher. Observation is a whole brain activity it is about attention to detail, focus, analyzing, reasoning and memory. Some of the benefits you get out of keen observation skills are - you become more aware, you become smarter, job performance improves, and relationships improve. It is a highly important skill and the best part is that it can be honed. Here are seven ways you can do that. Here we go..

1. Meditate

Every morning sit in a comfortable posture like padmasan and close your eyes focus on your inhalations and exhalations, stay in this state for about 5 minutes. When you first try to do this, your mind will be flooded with so many thoughts, let the thoughts come and go, don’t dwell on them, just observe them. As you keep working at this you will notice that the thoughts keep reducing and soon you are able to reach a stage when you can maintain a blank mind with no thoughts bothering you, this is the state when you get direct access to the cosmic energy. Reaching this state hones attention, gives you better focus, you mental processing becomes faster and your memory becomes stronger.

2. Use brain games

Play with puzzles, chess, rubik cube, it hones your logical reasoning. My personal experience has been with chess. My grandfather taught me chess when I must have been about 10 years of age. Chess is something that challenges your mind, you have to use your logical reasoning not only for your own moves but for the opponents moves as well, you need sharp observation, many a times I was focused on my strategy to take a piece but I failed to notice that I lost my queen. You have to consider all possible moves. I learned some great lessons from chess, so much so that I created a video sharing all my lessons in it, you can go to my youtube channel to watch it.

3. Memory exercises

In my class on ‘Memory Development’ I start with a simple question to the participants, “How many of you feel that you have a weak memory?” Almost everybody put their hand up. Then I say, when this class is over you will go to your own home, or do you enter someone’s else’s home? They laugh and say they enter their own home. I say if you enter your own home then you have a good memory. We all have a good memory, but the problem is we don’t exercise it so the memory muscle is not built stronger. So how do we build it? Here are some simple exercises In the evening when you are back from work, when you have freshened up, relax in a chair, close your eyes and try to recall the day events see all the details as they happened, stay with the pictures, make them as real as you can. You could also pick up a long term event to recall. Maybe you went trekking in the himalayas 9 years back. Visualize the whole trek as if it were happening right now. These exercise will make your memory stronger and help you in your observation skills.

4. Trial and error

Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly. Remember the time when you were trying to learn how to ride a bicycle, did you ride it the very first time you sat on it? I doubt. What happened? you fell, your takeoff and landings were pretty awful but when you kept working at its suddenly you get it, you can feel it, it is so smooth, it is effortless and the thrill you get is out of the world. Observation skills too may be bad initially but as we keep working at it we get better and better. Take any skill when you first start, you are clumsy, awkward not sure of yourself but as you keep at it you master it.

5. Be open to new experiences

Of late I became obsessive about learning how to make videos, it was something that I had never done in my life. I watched over 500 videos on youtube. And as I watched I found my obeservation skills becoming sharper. I was able to note how to position the camera, how to have a good background, how to improve the quality of my audio, how to zoom in and out, how to give some visual effects. When you are open to new experiences you start noticing things that you had never noticed or observed earlier, doing this sharpens your observations skills and you learn a new skills. My observation skills helped me launch my own workshop on how to create your own videos. The point I want to make is you can profit from your keen observation skills.

6. Observe Body language

Another way to sharpen yourobservation skills is to observe the body language of the people around you. Whenever you are at the airport waiting for your flight, observe people How does this person stands? Is he using open or closed body language? What’s the look on his face?What does he does with his hands?What about his legs?Does he make eye contact? You can also do this while watching TV at home, you can shut off the TV volume and then observe the body language of the characters and try to figure out what is happening in the scene.

7. Test your observation skills

Walk into a room and observe everything and then walk out of the room, take a pen and paper and note people, faces, clothes and objects. The more things you are able to recall means you have better attention, better focus, your mental processing is faster and your memory muscle is stronger. You will be in more demand if your observations skills are sharper. Use your observation skills to observe people, customers, situations, problems, products, pitfalls, services, team members and developments in technology.

I am Rajiv Kumar Luv. My passion in life is to make a difference in the lives of people so that they achieve their personal as well as professional best. I am absolutely committed to specially helping youngsters become leaders in their chosen fields. In the past 28 years, I have trained over 100,000 people from all walks of life. Through my two-day program “Leadership Through Personality Development” I help the youth plan their career, build confidence, make better decisions, manage time and develop their employability skills to meet today’s real-life challenges. You can learn more about me and the work I do by visiting: