By Sarah West

A familiar phrase often surfaces in conversations, “I can’t, I wish I had the time,” someone remarks.
While I’m sure at some point in the past I too have naively used this statement; in recent years I’ve grown to find it disconcerting when spoken back to me. This leads me to ponder the question, “Just who or what determines how a person spends one’s time?” And furthermore, I wonder, “what causes a person to believe that they can’t?” Can’t is a word better left unsaid, lest we begin to believe it.
I recently came back from a trip. On my drive southward, somewhere between Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania, and Atlanta, I resolved to restructure my daily life. Reflecting over the years in which I’ve strived to keep a steady day-to-day routine and furthermore have risen to the challenge of making time and space for everything, as everything seems to increase, I admit the result hasn’t always been ideal. I prefer to look to the farm model and consider how I might work smarter within the context of my life.
Standing in an artist’s north light studio along the Brandywine River, I recognized the day light and meditated on thoughts of the farmer’s work and relevance to the artist, he who spent his days lassoing the light like none other. In turn, I realized that every moment of my day could be better orchestrated.
It’s been weeks since that trip. I realize now, it was life changing. Without a second to waste, I immediately set into motion my resolution, revising and finding ways to improve use of the hours.
To awake before the sun prompts an intelligent attitude towards time management. Cultivating a special place for each event throughout the day has been achieved through steadfast diligence and commitment. More is rendered therefore more is recorded. Every day promises a rewarding harvest.
With each day we are given the same renewed number of hours. Observe those among us who live prolifically, and dedicate a great deal of time to building an acquaintanceship with past figures who contributed their life’s work to posterity – moreover, do all one can and more with get done. Work as the sun rises, and turn ‘round as the sun dips below the western horizon, look back over the hours and there will be more accomplishment than wishful reluctance.
West serves the Opelika Observer as a contributing columnist, with written works of Cultural Arts relevance and prose. She is the founder of the Sarah West Gallery of Fine Art, a center for cultural arts, Smiths Station’s premier fine-arts destination. To learn more about her work and activism, visit