Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

How many of you out there have your whole life under control?

As many of you know, I have been teaching a Time/Life Management seminar for over 27 years and over 75,000 people have attended the course. I continually hear back from attendee’s years later on how this course has changed their lives.

I run into people all over the world that come up to me to show me that they are still using their Day-Timer even though like me they have some sort of PDA as well.

I am not going to give you the course today but I am going to tell you three things you can do every morning when you plan your day (if you plan your day).

If you don’t sit down everyday and “think” for a few minutes before you start an 8-12 hour day about what you need to get done, then you are already in trouble.

Here are 3 things to think about as you make your “To Do” list in your planner.


1). Think about yesterday. Think about what you did well and what you did not do well.

     Going through this process will help you add to your “To Do” list some things that

     you need to go back and fix. It might mean going back and apologizing to someone.

     It might mean going back and being more clear with someone. It might mean doing

     some work over that you did not do so well in the first place. When you do this you

     not only fix the problem you created yesterday but you also will find yourself being

     better the next time when a similar situation occurs. The key is to think about

     yesterday before you think about today.


2). Think about the responsibilities you have signed up for in your life. Make a list of

      them so you know what to think about. A few things I would have on that list for my

      life are  the following: family members, my direct reports at work, my community

     non-profit obligations, my health, my finances, my personal development, my book,

     my blog, my neighbors and my friends. The list is different for all of us and

     continually changes depending on the responsibilities we sign up for in our lives. All           

      of these things are your responsibility and no one else’s. When you have children you   

      sign up for a lot of responsibility. When you become a manager you sign up for a lot       

      a lot of responsibility.

      With all of your responsibilities life can get out of control fast and a bit

      overwhelming. If you will take the time to learn good time management skills

      and practice them, you will then have a solid system for keeping your life under   

      control which will greatly reduce stress and improve results.

      Most organizations have solid systems for keeping their organization under control.

      Most individuals do not have a solid system for keeping their life under control.


3). Think about what you should work on today, this week or this month which will not

     pay off for 1, 5, 10, 20, 40 or 50 years from now. Planning for your retirement should

     be on that list for sure as should your personal development, exercise and so many

     other things. Teaching your children to have a love of reading by the time they are 6

     or 7 is certainly one, as this will give them an edge in so many ways. Things like not

      smoking or stopping smoking really pays off later.

     If you put these kind of things off you end up with so many regrets and will find

     yourself saying,I wish I had……” Wishing and hoping are interesting concepts

     but not very effective. And life comes at you fast.

     Effective leaders know the importance of working on the urgent, the important and the

     vital. Make sure you have a vision of the things you should work on today which are

     vital and will not pay off for many years to come…..Lee

  1. Life comes at us so fast these days and doesn’t slow down even “after business hours”. Thanks for some simple steps for managing and prioritizing what is most important.

  2. I finally understand why letting go of “yesterday” exhausting all possibilities “today” and planning for “tomorrow” will pay off for many years to come. Thank you so very much!

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