Marie Forleo introduction


I'm Marie

You have gifts to share with the world and my job is to help you get them out there.

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I can’t help it.

I’m obsessed with finding methods that help me get more done, in less time and with less stress.

Partly, because my brain just doesn’t quit. It’s like a 4-year old who just ate 3 brownies.

There are soooo many things I want to create, see, learn, read, watch, and experience — that if I don’t give myself daily support and structure, I’d spontaneously combust.

If you plan on having a successful life, start by planning your day. Click To Tweet

The other reason is my ever-changing schedule. Between travel, shooting and the constant ebb and flow of life — there’s no “typical” day.

And, let’s be honest. As much as my inner good-girl dreams of having a set, uber-productive schedule (Snoozing by 11pm, meditating by 7am Marie!)…

My inner real-girl needs her chance to dance in the sunshine too. “Wait — what time is it. 1am? Of course we can watch another episode of Orange is The New Black!”

On today’s MarieTV, learn one of my most simple productivity habits for making sure I get the right things done everyday — no matter how wacky my schedule is.

It’ll only take you 4 minutes. But when you do it, you’ll walk into your day clear and focused. Like a freakin’ champion.

If you’re diggin’ this, you’ll enjoy these episodes too:

  1. 4 Things Really Productive People Do Everyday
  2. How To Prioritize: One Tip That Does It All
  3. Get More Done With This Tiny To-Do List Tweak

In the comments below, let me know:

Whether you’ve got a set schedule or one that’s constantly in flux — what’s one specific habit you use to make sure your most important work gets done each day?

Do your best to share as much detail as you can because thousands of incredible souls come here each week for insight and inspiration. Your story may just be what someone else needs to have a breakthrough.

Important: please share your thoughts and ideas directly in the comments. Links to other posts, videos, etc. may be deleted as they can come across as spammy.

This isn’t just about getting more done. It’s about getting the right things done each and every day so you can make the difference you were put on the planet to make.

With so much love,


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  1. This has been really helpful for me. I’m not as detailed about what I need to do the day before, but I do think about what is on deck for the next day. I might have to give this a try.

    One thing that has helped me with work was ordering a “This Week” notepad that has checkboxes for tasks that need to be completed this week. I fill it out for the week first thing every Monday morning. I like checking off stuff and it really keeps me focused on what needs to happen this week.

    I wrote about the importance of routines and rituals. I put together some exercises to help you come up with a routine that works for you. Putting together a routine can be simple, but ensuring the motivation to stick to it can be the hard part. Taking a moment to work through the whats and whys really helps with that. Good luck!

    • Where did you get a “this week” notepad like that?

      Checking off boxes on a notepad sounds fun! Although I do use a digital version of that: Todoist. Awesome app. I recommend it for any productivity junkies (I’m not affiliated in any way, just a fan:) )

      • Kat have you ever heard of Erin Condren? Planners are super colorful and omg delicious for the productive junkie in you! lol

      • Shayne

        Todoist looks interesting. Thanks for sharing that, Kat. I’m comparing it to Google Keep right now.

        • Mandy - Team Forleo

          Team Forleo is a fan of Google Keep, though I also keep a hard copy paper planner for myself personally. I think there are great things to be said for both online and hard copy methods.

          • Google Keep… Hmm… I might have to look into that. Thanks!

          • Lucy

            I haven’t heard of it. I use Kanban Tool to plan my daily activities (both work and private ones) and it works fine.

      • Hey Kat,

        It’s a Knock Knock notebook that I got on Amazon. They have a ton of really cute notepads and post-its. I even have the “WTF” and “Get Your Shit Together” notebook and “Say What” post-its. I might have to get the “Things You Must Do To Make Happy” and either the “Hot Mess Citation” or the “Hey Asshole” notebook. They are really funny! Do a search for Knock Knock and you’ll find them in the Office Dept. Have fun!

      • I’m not so analytical; maybe this isn’t the episode for me. I’m old school and just use post-its. ps~ for Marie~ the dress you’re wearing today looks very nice on you.

      • Thanks for the tip! I’ll have to try this app :).

    • Hi Marie,
      I’m SO glad to hear you re-iterate the solution I have been using since since high school! I was getting a little worrried that perhaps this method wasn’t going to cut it in the online business world, and I was so happy when you said it would still be helpful to people like myself, who have an erratic schedule and do not finish work at the same time every day!

      I am a VERY busy person who juggles clients, writing, working on several projects, as well as making time for myself, so the way I spend my time is super important to me.
      One of the things I’ve always done is write out or re-schedule my tasks based on their urgency, just before bed. I also do this with preparing materials for meetings, presentations and even any packing required for travelling appointments or holidays. I hate doing anything last minute.

      As always, I love watching your shows. Thank you for being such an inspiration to all whose lives you touch.

    • When you assign tasks to yourself with checkboxes, you have made (in effect) a written “contract” with yourself to complete these tasks. You may miss the deadline to complete them all; however, you will feel compelled to continue to eventually complete the list. Written commitments seem to have a powerful effect on us and should be used to complete important tasks, in my opinion. Also, LARGE or DIFFICULT tasks should be broken down into easier small progressive steps that can be checked off as you go along. Each check mark is a stimulating personal reward that moves you forward toward your goal. (add a chocolate bar reward for each checkmark on a difficult assignment – that should move things forward as well!) VIVA LA WRITTEN CONTRACT! (This is the “Marie Effect” in action.)

      • This is so why I love that notebook!! I’m such “do it when I feel like it” la la la person. I needed some kind of structure, but not too much that would I’d rebel. The checkbox notebook is a winner. I really get excited when I get to check things off. 🙂

    • Marie sometimes I just have to say, “no”. No, I’ve got something planned; no, that simply won’t fit in my schedule today; no thank you, I would love to, but can’t.

      I don’t know how many times I talk to people who over-extend themselves out of love for others which in turn harms themselves.

      LOVE YOURSELF – create days that serve you (while making life beautiful for those around you).

  2. Concur ! Roar ! On this advice Marie. Since I learned ‘touch it once ‘ advice from you Marie, my overwhelm went down dramatically. I always always plan my day and put things in my calendar the night before. It helps me to not enter the day with a vague clueless mind but also forces me to limit my time on a particular task ! ( which works wonders for my perfectionist self ).
    Another thing that helps me immensely is to visualise my next day as the very last thing to do before I go to sleep, I set my intention for the next day and puts me in the right frame of mind before I start the day. It also helps me to include things like connecting with my family in the morning which is very important to me and it can be easily overlooked if I don’t plan for it in advance. Thanks for the awesome work you do Marie !

    • I am intrigued by the touch it once – will have to go look it up!

      And I am excited about this idea. The overwhelm thing has been happening for me fairly regularly. I also resonated with the vague clueless mind….I know that I’ve got a ton of things to do, but just can’t seem to get clear on where to start.

      So, planning it out at night, huh?? What a fabulous and simple idea….definitely going to try it tonight!!

      Thanks Marie and to all for sharing!!

  3. Great tips, Marie! I was never good at doing the “night before” planning, so I changed my morning routine to include my daily planning and prioritizing. That’s how The PEACE System was born – and I’ve been using it for years now to help me stay focused on what really matters each day – plus, it’s something I can do ANY time of day and it still keeps me on track for the next 24 hours.

    I think that most people need to be willing to find their own groove when it comes to planning your day – so long as it gets done. Heck, I plan my weeks on Thursdays because that’s the day that works for me right now. When that changes in the future (and no doubt, it will), I’ll be flexible and compassionate with myself as I go through the change, and then buckle down with the new schedule when I find a groove that works.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      I think you really hit the nail on the head when you said be compassionate with yourself. Sometimes even the best laid plans are derailed by something unexpected, so that compassion is important. 🙂

  4. Love this! Thank you Marie. Your videos seem to come at just the right time, and in just the right fashion.

    I’ve just started writing in my journal and meditating in the evenings, so this will be a great ritual to add to my before-bed rituals so that I can go to sleep with a sense of clarity and restfulness, and start my day with a sense of focus.

    One of the other things I’ve done is got really artsy and playful about creating a list of things that I need to accomplish in the morning before I begin creating and serving. I stuck the list on the wall above my nightstand and my alarm clock.

    They’re the things I must do to fill up my own love tank before I can go out and love the world.

    Those things include hydrating, writing in my 5-Minute Journal, meditating/praying/visualizing, exercise and movement, a smoothie and/or healthy breakfast, and some inspirational/motivational audiovisual (e.g. MarieTV); then I get into creating, playing, and serving.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      I love what you shared, Reno! I especially like how you phrased “fill up my own love tank before I can go out and love the world.” I think that’s so wise. It’s like what they say on planes–put your own oxygen mask on before helping others with theirs. 🙂

      • I am loving this comment too~ Taking care of oneself first- mind/body/heart- and THEN get to writing stuff down- we are lovely complicated creatures with great needs to fill which often get squashed… and then the next day we wonder WHY we cannot get stuff done! So thanks for this reminder of taking care of the valuable US before we set out on our tasks- otherwise aint gonna amount to caca if we are not filled up ourselves. <3

  5. A new system I am implementing is using a planner where I list my three main client tasks for the day, two people I need to contact, a personal goal/task, and my 4 self promotion tasks for the day! Working out great so far. It’s so motivating to check something off!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Your 4-3-2-1 method sounds awesome, Taylor!

  6. Yup, could not agree more. My schedule is bonkers due to travel and just my preference for living life over working all the time so planning the night before is key. I decide what hours I’m going to work, what priority items I’m going to get done, and boom…follow-through. I’m quite certain I work a lot less than most location-independent entrepreneurs and yet people always ask me how I get so much done. Plan the night before, boyyzzzz!

  7. I do this every evening, reviewing my day and previewing the day ahead. I love it, it helps me so much! I also do weekly and monthly p/reviews.

  8. Even though I have tried many productivity hacks over the years, this one that you mentioned is definitely the simplest of them all!
    I love that you reminded me again to stick with what works. No need to get more complicated than necessary.
    Thanks Marie!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      I hear you, Melissa. Sometimes I come across productivity “hacks” that are so complicated they seem to only add more work!

  9. Totally agree with your one top tip.

    I have a two-stage system where I plan out my week on Sunday evening with broad strokes and then tighten it up with the evening review.

    It does make it so much easier to run the list of things to do when you have a structure that is simple and easy to follow.

    • Cory

      Thanks for reminding me about the Sunday eve plan. I used to do this regularly, and with the family too. Somehow we’ve lost the habit, & I need it back!

  10. Great video, as usual! Many thx! This is a great tip, and when I employ it, it works like a dream. The challenging part is making sure that I do it every single day, at the end of my day. Seeing your video is a reminder to get back into this really productive habit.

  11. Monica

    Thanks for the reminder!

  12. A little planning beats a LOT of firefighting.

  13. I love the idea of adding time boxes to each task, going to integrate this into my current method – thank you!

    I like the “sticky note” method. Whatever fits on a small sticky note are the most important things to get done.

    At the end of each day, I write the next day’s sticky note and toss the current day’s in the “G file” [“G” for garbage].

    • Jacqueline, I’m curious: do you actually use a physical sticky note or a virtual one? 🙂

    • I do this too! Love sticky notes! A new one for each day lets you start fresh and you are right – if it doesn’t fit you must acquit (I mean leave off, but that didn’t rhyme as well)! Sadly, I use the long rectangular sticky notes to squeeze in a few extras;)

  14. Thank you Marie! I love anything that creates efficiencies and helps us be the wonder women we are! My schedule fluctuates with all the time zones I work with, from Europe early mornings to Asia/India later nights. I usually print my calendar the night before so I know what time my first meeting is. In the morning the very first thing I do is write down what I want to get done for the day circling the important items that I would regret not getting done by day end. I’m planning to add the time estimate which may entice me to fit a few non-exciting things in if it fits nicely into some extra time.

  15. Cindy in Aust

    Marie, such an elegantly simple idea. It seems so obvious but how many of us really do the preplanning. I have been doing it in transit in the mornings but the night before would make my morning feel less frantic. Great ideas. Keep them coming…..I cant get enough of your videos.

    One thing I do at the end of the day is to do a spot check of things that I had to sneak in during the day to work out how I could have prevented it or at least planned better for some of them.

  16. Beth

    This is great if you aren’t a parent– my day is not that easy because of the constant changes and surprises of what parenting brings. I think being able to be flexible on the fly is key to getting anything done and choosing only ONE important thing each day to accomplish is the secret. If I get more done, then it’s bonus! I learned this lesson quickly after my first baby was born and I had my own business.

  17. Ohhhh you must’ve read my mind. Productivity is really on my mind atm (always really).

    With 3 kids, my schedule is never the same and it’s these little tweaks that I just love trying and testing out.

    So this is awesome. I usually do my ToDo list in the morning (with coffee in hand), but I’m going to try your method and do it the night before!

    Maybe it’ll help me get to sleep quicker!?

    Or help me start the day on the right foot. Rather than scrambling.

    Love J xx

  18. I love this Marie …it is my PASSION! So much so that I ran successful businesses for decades as a single Mum of 3 daughters. BUT, I tried everything and nothing worked. I tried Covey’s planner and I tried Tony Robbins RPM and nothing worked for me because I wanted to manage all my kids and home stuff in the same place as my work stuff. So I took a deep breath and developed my own software. The only software in THE WORLD to combine coaching, goal setting and neat little time management app called Dump Chunk Do so that you absolutely know you are working toward your goals and not random activity. I would so love to show this to your audience and get this out to as many as possible. I just completed 3 years in a cave developing it all and I am beyond excited about what it is ding for people. Let me know Marie ?

    • Tracey –
      This looks great, what is the fee?

      • Glad you like it Marj !
        You can try it out for just $1 for 30 days and then if you like it you can carry on at $19 a month. It will save a very high % of your time if you use Dump Chunk Do all day every day

  19. My day HAS to begin with taking my dog for a walk without thoughts. By that I mean I cannot think about my to-do list before or during my walk. It causes too much anxiety and I need to just clear my mind and meditate first thing in the morning. This sets me up for success better than any kind of plan can. I can tackle anything with a calm, clear mind.

  20. Yay for productivity! I use the Pomodoro technique where possible and plans as much as I can with Trello and my Google Calander and my trust WHITE board.

    But my FAVORITE thing I’ve learned how to automate some tasks (using IFTTT) and also to outsource some (like the ones you mentioned about booking hair appointments, getting dog food or buying a card) through this service:

    Saves me time, money and sanity!


  21. Thanks Marie –
    This is a smart idea and some of us are most productive when busiest for that very reason – now you have so much to do you write it down in detail.
    When I’m not slammed, I tend to not itemize like this – will try harder!

    Marie – add one more thing to your ‘to do’ list this week –
    send my current Marie TV videos to _______________________ hair product mfg to be one of their brand ambassadors. (I’m sure they would jump on it!)

  22. This is a great tip. I hadn’t made it a habit, but often would think of things as I lay in bed trying to sleep so would get up and just write it down to release it for the next day. Better to plan to write it out and go to bed peacefully. Thank you Marie! Sun kissed from Costa Rica.

  23. Great advice, Marie.

    Just wondering, I noticed you didn’t include meditation in your example of your daily schedule. Do you include such activities in your schedule or do you consider it so fundamental an activity like…breathing, that you don’t include it?

    I meditate every day, usually first thing but if I don’t include it as part of my schedule, I can skip over it jumping to the first item to get a start on the day.

    Also, couldn’t agree more about your comment on email. I have a tendency to want to dive into email first thing to see if that new client has responded or whatever. Before you know it, I’m in the email rabbit hole looking at all emails, cleaning out etc., so setting aside a specific amount of time for email clean out is important. I also try, at least once/week, to unsubscribe to those sites that send me an email which I always delete upon reading. By paring down email subscriptions that I truly see no value to me, it also helps me keep email manageable.

    Thanks again… great stuff as always

    • Check out a service like Unroll me. I use it to collect all my emails so I can skim them and then if I want to open one I can. I can also bulk unsubscribe if I’ve allowed things to get crazy.

      The other thing I do is NOT answer emails the first 90 minutes or last 30 minutes of my day and I only reply twice a day. Essentially teaching people who email me that I am busy and my time is valuable.

      • Mandy - Team Forleo

        This is really smart, Kelly! I’ve heard so many super productive people say they only reply to emails once or twice a day or only at certain times during the day.

  24. I LOVE this technique. I’ve found that I tend to wander aimlessly first thing in the morning if I don’t have my tasks clearly laid out when I wake up. The other thing I do that has completely changed my life (for real) is that I write out my list of things to do each week and each day in order of priority. Instead of blocking time – which always had me stressed when things took longer – I just number my list in the order of how important each task is to me. That way I get the most important things done and if I don’t get to to the less important things, it’s no big deal. This also helps curb overwhelm – I used to look at a week’s worth of to dos and feel completely incapable of even starting. Now I just see the 4-5 things I want to do each day and everything feels SO much easier.

  25. What I started doing recently (and it works very well for me) is setting a timer for 45min intervals and really focusing within that 45min.

    Those are super intense working times, and then after each 45min I take 10-15min “break” for lighter tasks, stretching drinking water etc.

    45-15-14-15 has helped me achieve more productivity, because my brain knows when to focus intensely and when there is a bit of time for day-dreaming. 🙂

    But planning the priorities for each day the night before is a big thing for me too. Awesome episode, Marie!

  26. Gerry

    Marie mentions ordering more “kuma food”. What’s that? Out of curiosity, I Googled it and can’t find anything about it.

    • Christina

      Kuma is Marie’s dog.

  27. One of the most helpful tools for me to set the day up right, is to get my good attitude on. What I mean by that is that I create a positive mental/emotional state that sets me up to recognize how I can do anything I set my mind to, and makes me feel that I can definitely achieve my goals in relationship to what’s most important to me that week, starting with a realistic step I can take right now. This often comes through dancing to a power-up song, meditating and visualizing on my dreams coming true, drawing and journaling to tap into what’s going on inside, or going for a walk or doing some yoga to help circulate blood and oxygen flow that in turn helps declutter ze mind. From there, once I’ve got a feeling good buzz going, I can see more clearly what’s really important to me and what I need to do to contribute in a meaningful way and lead a fulfilling life.

  28. Thank you, Marie! Time management is something I have struggled with for years. I use a Notes app on my tablet that I can list my to-do items and then check them off as I complete each one. I love the idea of planning the day the night before and will implement this ASAP! Thanks for the great tip!

  29. Hi Marie and Everyone,

    Thank you for the great tip!

    I personally do not write a schedule but I do think through every single thing I’d like to do that day. Then I get up an hour earlier to get the most important things done right away along with my morning routine. However I will go by your advice and I will write my schedule out because I am getting busier and busier and I do not want the urgent things to take my time from the important to dos. 🙂

  30. My favorite productivity tip is also about night time. I take time to listen to God and “start” my day with Him before I go to sleep. Here’s a short free PDF describing why this is so powerful and how it can help you:

  31. I can totally relate to this! As a keynote speaker and corporate trainer, I am on the road a lot, and if I don’t make a daily schedule, I start to feel flustered. The schedule keeps me on track with my long term goals and helps me create daily tasks that contribute to them. I’m so anal about my daily schedule, that I lay it out hour by hour. It doesn’t always work exactly as written, bc let’s face it…life happens, but just by having it I stay on track more. Great post Marie!

  32. These are amazing tips, Marie! I’m a BIG to-do list maker, but it is going to be super helpful to do this the night before so that I’m more purposeful in my day.

    Thank you so much!

  33. Wow Marie! I have inconsistent schedule on my job and have been meaning to make a mammogram appointment. Why I never thought to actually put that on my schedule at a particular time of the day, I’ll never know. Great advice and thank you.

  34. Marie! I think we were separated at birth! I do the exact same thing.

    No matter what…I always make a to-do list for the following day before I leave my desk every night. Every. Single. Night.

    It helps when I get to my desk in the morning and distractions pop up. I can just look at my list and hit the ground running.

    I also make a separate column for personal stuff. AND I make a little placeholder for distractions. So if I’m pulled away from a task when I’m in the middle of it, I will write down exactly what I was doing before I switch tasks. That way when I sit back down at my desk I don’t have to say “now what was I doing?”

    Thanks for the great ideas as always! 🙂

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Good ideas, Paula! I think making separate columns for different types of things, such as work/school/personal, is so important for keeping your head straight. I know my mind gets fuddled if I don’t segment like that.

  35. It’s already my routine, I have an agenda paper, and I always check it first on sunday to see my week, and then every evening to adjust my planning.
    I have always a big blue bloc note of post it for my idea.

    And In my agenda I have a space for personal things.

    I’m quite obsess with the idea of mastering my time, to have space for me and not only work.

    Space for idea, creativity, vision, fun and love

  36. This certainly works, but is best done at the end of your working day, not at the very end of the day when we should be winding down for sleep instead of “worrying” about tomorrow.

    Also, begin every day with a short routine that energizes you and gets your mind/bidy in gear. For me it’s Qigong. It could be yoga, or a short workout… or singing in the shower (the important part is the singing).

  37. Great tip today! Loved it!

  38. Yes yes yes! I love these tips, and I do that, whenever I remember!

    My other tip, which I find utterly invaluable, is to take ‘transition time’ between every task, or when arriving home and before going onto the next task- rather than rush from any one thing to another, I take a cuppa, sit down, do nothing for a few minutes- it allows me to be fully present for the next activity, which is super-important for my line of work (being an artist) 🙂

    Thanks again Marie for all the great wisdom you give us! xx

    • Me too! I schedule in at least an extra 10 minutes for almost every task and appointment.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Adding in transition time is brilliant, Clare! You’re so right that often we jump from one thing to the next, which can often leave us overwhelmed and ill-prepared to start the next task.

  39. This is something I have been doing for a while. And it does help. The biggest help ever, for me, is NOT checking email in the first 90 minutes of my day. I’ve also learned to only reply to emails twice per day (unless it’s an emergency). Doing this has helped me train others that my time is valuable.

  40. M

    Hi Marie, I dare to admit that I write down a schedule before the next day, feel really good about thos and then fails to follow it through as I would have wanted to the other day. I will have to shape up on this.

  41. Ana

    Hi Marie, hi all,

    I use Evernote to plan my day. After seeing how Natasha Vorompiova (the Systems Rock lady) uses Evernote to manage her business, I started to do the same.

    I now have a template for the whole week, which I then copy and alter to the present week; then each day have some recurrent tasks already assigned to them (with little check boxes!!!) and I am free to add any new ones. I write personal tasks there too, so that I can keep track of what I need to do.

    If it’s not there, chances are I will forget!

    Thanks for the video, Marie+team!

    • I have tried Evernote so many times. I wish I could get on board with it. I seem to get uber-distracted by apps with a lot of features.

      • Try Asana! Simple to-do list that can be expanded if you ever need to use it for project management!

        • I have tried it. Everyone raves about it, but I don’t have any need or desire for team collaboration and so I feel like it’s still “too much”. I get distracted by all the extras.

  42. No time for breakfast or lunch?!

  43. Thanks Marie,

    I used to do this years ago right before turning out the lights going to bed. Not only was I more organized but it helped clear the clutter in my
    head giving me a better night’s sleep.

    Time to get back to it!

  44. You are a rock star, Marie! I try to plan my week but revisiting/adjusting it everyday is so important because things come up and change. Also love the important vs urgent task video. I’ve been doing that for a while now and it really helps. Thanks for sharing all your great knowledge!

  45. Ana

    Hi Marie,

    Another successful tip. Thank you!!!

    I am so glad I got in contact with your existence and all that you do. I would like to reach out to you with my question.
    A new dream for your future? How to make a change?

  46. Becky

    Nailed IT! Needed this today SO much – Thanks!

  47. Kathy

    Great tip that I have been using for many years now! It helps me so much to sleep too!

  48. Love this, Marie! I learned this from a yoga teacher a few years ago and it makes such a huge difference! I think the biggest thing I got out of this is that it is okay to have a set schedule everyday. I have two little kids and no two days are the same. I used to beat myself up for not sticking to a daily schedule. It is refreshing to hear that successful people also stay up late watching tv sometimes 🙂

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Success looks different for everyone and the path to achieve success is just as varied. A daily routine just doesn’t work out for some people and that’s totally okay.

  49. I always try to make my to do list and schedule them every night. But I normally get sleepy doing it and try to do it the next morning, which is very very bad. I will practice working on a schedule every night, i love you videos Marie so empowering…

  50. The most important thing I do for productivity is Schedule everything!

    If it’s not scheduled it’s not real! (Who said that? Marie forleo, the follow-through formula) This tidbit helped me with the nitpicky stuff – I have always been great at the big picture deadlines, and scheduling put me on the right track. I just started using “GoalsonTrack” and really love it so far. (not an affiliate, yet anyway)

    “A Goal is a Dream with a Date!” —Tammy Perry

  51. I love to plan out my day and am the type of person to do so in great detail, such as the way you suggested. But I become frustrated now with young children because the moment I plan on quiet time to work my kids won’t take a nap or they’ll get sick or be hungry for my attention. So I remember why I want a home business in the first place–so I can be home with them more. So now my daily schedule works around their daily schedule and I approach the day assuming I’ll have just ten minutes to get something done and I don’t know when that time will come. So I decide the one most important thing I need to do to keep my business moving forward and plan to jump on it as soon as my children allow. By putting their needs first and exhibiting patience with them, and not allowing myself to get distracted by what I want to get done, they’re much more cooperative and I’m typically pleasantly surprised with more time to get other stuff done too.

  52. I do exactly this, but because I’m a paper-phobe, I rely on an app called Timely. It lets me enter one time tasks or recurring habits, estimate how long each will take, then even helps add them to the next available time slot in your day / week / month / etc. Then…when certain tasks don’t get done, you just ask it to help you find time for it another day. Boom.

    SO helpful to have my full day mapped out in such a simple draggable droppable way. They were recently purchased by Google, so I’m praaaaaaaaayyyying it eventually integrates with G-calendar too.

    • Sorry, typo! The app is called Timeful (not Timely).

  53. I’m in the midst of revamping one business and starting another; OMG I have so much to do! And then there’s my new food obsession, and my creative projects .. . anyway, I was JUST thinking, ya know, I should write down my to-do list the night before! Cause it gets the list out of my head so I can sleep better. So–lovely to have this confirmation that this is a good strategy.

    Love your work, Marie. Thanks helping me love my own more!

  54. This video has helped me really think about , what I do day to day and what I need to do day to day. There are things that I need to do and write down that I simply don’t. I really need to plan the night before, but also write the minor todos like buying stamps..mailbox etc too! This was very helpful

  55. Dear Marie,
    I’ve been doing this trick for years and can vouch for how well it works! The night before, when you need to tear yourself away from work to throw yourself into bed, is the perfect time to jot down what has not yet been completed. Picking up there the next day saves time from asking yourself, “Where was I?” or “What was so important last night that I can’t remember today?”
    Love it!

  56. Reading these comments really helped me to realize I’m not alone is this fast paced world with a crazy schedule. I get trapped in my own bubble sometimes and forget there are millions of us struggling from day to day. This is extremely useful Marie!!

  57. I love how succinct this video is. I started doing the evening planning habit over a year ago and it IS as powerful as Marie says.

    I now use OmniFocus to manage my tasks and it’s been a life-changer. My most powerful habit to date for me is my morning journaling. It has helped me gain so much focus and clarity not just on business issues but also with health.

  58. Katie

    Thanks Marie I needed this. I work best on a schedule and ever since I left my job it has been hard to stay on track.
    Currently I’ve been having weekly calls with a friend who is also trying to start her own business. We discuss what we’ve accomplished and what are the tasks for the next week we want to tackle and get done. This has been a great way to hold myself accountable but I also need something day to day. I’m going to start my daily to do lists tonight.

    • Katie, I’ve started meeting with a friend each week, too! It really does help! We also send texts throughout the week just to check in. Simply “What are you working on today?” is a great reminder to stay on task and get our work done … so that we can enjoy our Friday coffee-shop accountability time! 🙂

  59. Yay! I get to say “Ditto, Marie!”

    My schedule changes every day … the night before I work out what needs to be done … and I even write in my showers and travel time. It makes life so much easier … and more productive!

  60. After owning a full time small biz for 6 years…I became a full time firefighter…AND kept running the biz. I thought it was doable…had it all pre planned. Yeah, I’m that gullible. I love the idea of planning before the next day. But some nights we’re up all night at the firehouse. There’s one big requirement…give yourself GRACE. The schedule will have to be tweaked to allow for a nap. Because sleep is paramount to productivity. Sleep is so often overlooked when it comes to productivity. Check out Michael Hyatt’s podcast episode on it…and your view on sleep will be forever changed 🙂

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      You’re so right, Kyle. It’s funny how we’ll sometimes try to tell ourselves that we don’t have time for a nap, meanwhile we’re not doing our best work, but we could’ve been if we’d just taken a nap! Definitely a productivity paradox, but an important note on the power of a good nap.

  61. As an artist working unconsistant hours I found the Brian Tracy tip work perfectly for me and it is “Do it now” whenever I work and some e-mail comes up, I answer directly, I think I need to put the trash out, I do it now. I found massive improvement working this way. AND people LOVE when I answer fast and always thank me for it.

    Also, doing the hardest task first, write down the goals and have too’s. Thank you for great advice as always 🙂

  62. I like to make a” today” list the day before, not a to do list. Very similar idea and it’s got just enough to make me feel productive and hardly ever does it not work for me! I’m going to add some more time frames. Thanks marie!

  63. Heidi

    Hello Marie!
    Thank you so much for this latest video about taking just 4 min to get your next day together.
    My Q is: besides just making a list, do you have any other idea of how to plan your day? I am not too much of a list person. I’m more of a visual arts person. I would love to have my day more organized and productive, but I just haven’t found the right method yet.
    Thank you again so much Marie for all of you wonderful videos. I look forward to seeing them every week. 🙂
    <3 Heidi

    • Vivian

      Heidi, you might be interested in the Bullet Journaling method — a lot of people have gotten VERY creative in how they implement it, with stickers, colors, illustrations, and different layouts including a chronodex or spiraldex. You can see some people’s journals on the Google Plus forum:

  64. Thank you so much Marie! As usual, this is exactly what I needed to hear! I am on a set schedule, kind of, but I still have trouble staying productive. I have tried everything, but I really think this will at least get me going in the right direction.

  65. Thanks Marie.

    The more I develop my business into an online going concern, the less structured my days become. If I don’t build a plan for the day, I don’t have a day and I don’t get results. Much like weight management and exercise, I consider this kind of planning to be my accountability factor. We are 50% more likely to be successful if we plan, record and execute. I want me some of that good stuff!

    Tosca Reno

  66. Thank you for bringing a ray of light and warmth to my Tuesdays, Marie! I love your advice in general and this one, as simple as it seems, works like a charm every time. Planning my work the day before gives me structure and purpose. Keep inspiring us!

  67. This is a good tip. What CAN throw it off is unexpected interruptions, such as you are working from home and your realtor tells you that someone is coming to look at your house in an hour. So you stop, clean up and leave. That is when you really need to maintain focus so you don’t miss a beat. 🙂

  68. Val

    Thanks Marie for this episode, it’s just arriving at the right time!! I’m struggling with so many things to do as I’m starting my own business and settling down in a new city. Crazy!
    One thing I use to get things done is writing my goals every single days, it helps me to stay focused on the essential. Will do as well your tip!!
    Thanks again for sharing, Cheers, Val

  69. I love this, especially because I’ve been sitting here for 3 hours now, going through a social media and email wormhole and need to get back to my schedule! What has been a HUGE help for me in running my own business is using the Winners’ Journal for my basic schedule (but it also helps you map out goals and gives you daily affirmations and monthly inspiration) AND having a separate editorial calendar to help me with blog posts and social media (which I’ve now created an add-on to keep track of what gets the most engagement so I have a one stop shop to go to when I’m in need of popular content). Ok…back to work! Thanks so much as always Team Forleo!!

  70. The words from “A Year of Living Your Yoga” by Judith Hanson Lasater, Ph.D., P.T. : On today’s date, July 14th, “”Planning ahead is both absolutely necessary and completely impossible.””

    “Before you start your day, spend ten minutes making a specific plan for how you will spend each hour of your day. At the end of the day, notice how you followed the plan and how you did not. Remember, planning enables us to focus, but forcing the plan creates rigidity. Celebrate your ability to plan for flexibility.”

  71. Christina

    Marie, thank you! I never thought to actually put a time estimate on my appts., tasks and projects. I think that this advice will make me accomplish more and give me more time off.

  72. Hi Marie,
    Love today’s Marie TV. We plan all our days as it really works. However , we don’t have a to do list but a
    “Next Actions List” it just seems to work better and we move mountains of work. A To Do List never seemed to get completed whereas Next Actions List makes you think what am I doing next! Easy Peasy! It works! Changing two words changes your day.

  73. Thank you for your amazing insight always Marie! I have gotten away from this and your video serves as a reminder to get back on track. I’ve got loads of goodness to spread and light to shine and I can’t let time waste away. I have two reminders in my planner: 1) The way you manage your time is the way you create your whole life. (I think I grabbed this quote from Danielle Laporte) and 2) Remember who you are and what you want from your day! Each morning I read this daily reminder as it’s easy to get lost in what others expect of you rather than being true to your own dreams and goals. Will be writing a blog post on this soon. Better plan that into my day. 🙂

  74. Yup! I do that and it works like a charm 🙂

  75. Shi

    Thanks for your insight, Marie! My schedule, especially over the summer, has been “ebb and flow.” It really helps to plan ahead instead of wondering the day of what your day is going to look like. I like to create a little list to help me “Win the Day”

  76. What a funny coincidence, I just wrote about planning your day as the most important thing each creator must do just a couple of weeks ago.
    Another thing that I consider productivity super-tool is called segment intentions (originates from Ask&It’s Given). Basically, your day will consist of many segments. Before each of them you take a short break and ask yourself: “What is my intention for this segment?” For instance, you sit in your car, pause and set intention to drive to your workplace safely and quickly. You sit at computer and set intention to skim through your emails and answer most important in 20 minutes. then you enter the new segment, set new intention and so on. This procedure works miracles for me, give it a try.

    Thank you Marie, another great episode.

  77. Single most important thing I get done each day is… SLEEP!

    If I don’t get it, I’m 100% useless. 🙂 But even sleep is a challenge for me because like Marie, I too am just like a 4 year old who ate 3 brownies all the time.

  78. Zélia

    I do and read my todolist the night before.
    But I will definitely adopt your method Marie, I have the same problem as Ashley.

  79. People laugh at me, but I wouldn’t be able to get through my day without my list! Each day, I have everything that needs to be done jotted down in my schedule book – don’t have time for something like make an appointment? I’ll move it to another day. Generally though, I tend to get more accomplished when I’m organized and I definitely would forget a lot stuff if I didn’t take the time to write it down. There are some days when I have a really long list and I feel overwhelmed, but I just take one thing at a time and sometimes I’m actually surprised by how much I accomplish!

  80. Oh how the Universe sends me Q&A Tuesday right when I need it most! I am on a wonderfully crazy summer schedule juggling kids and my growing business. I have been waking up early to jump right on my computer without a revised plan (from whatever crazy happened the day before). Consequently, I “work” all day and accomplish very little. I have been trying to get more organized each week on my calendar but doing this every night is going to make the difference. Simple yet powerful -love you Marie!!

  81. I keep forgetting to make my life easy by simply planning the next day and week ahead. Thanks for the great reminder Marie – got planning going again and feeling serious relief. Amazing how good it feels. I want to never forget again 🙂

  82. Akisha

    I visualize everyday.

  83. Sherry

    Okay, Marie, you and your team need to stop following me around because you always seem to know exactly what I need to hear right when I need to hear it. (LOL!)

    Seriously though, just last week I was telling someone that amidst the contract web design job that I do, plus trying to start a freelance business of my own locally, plus general life stuff and wanting to make more time for fun hobbies and soul-invigorating creative pursuits (writing, reading, singing, yoga, going for walks, trying meditation, baking & trying new healthy recipes, or just finding time to watch a movie!) — there just never seems to be enough time in my day to do it all. I have so much I want to do, I feel like it’s easy to become overwhelmed and the day goes by and I end up feeling like I didn’t accomplish much of anything!

    I have found that writing things down ahead of time works well for me, because then I can see clearly right in front of me what needs to get done, and I can cross off each task as it is completed (which gives me great satisfaction).

    So this video is a great reminder to reincorporate that practice back into my life! Thanks, Marie! 🙂

    I think the only thing I struggle with is when it feels like certain items on the list are too frivolous because they aren’t the professional or general to-do items, you know what I mean? So I end up skipping those “fun” or “creative” tasks because my brain sees them on the list and dismisses them immediately as non-essential. It’s like I still have my parents in my head, saying, “You can only do these things if you get your homework / chores done first.” And if I’m not productive enough to get all those “essentials” done first, then the day is gone and it’s another day that I haven’t filled my own personal cup with the activities that bring me joy.

    So that’s definitely something I need to work on because I do think it gives me energy and joy to make time for the creative stuff as well as the “needs to get done stuff.”

    Any advice anyone out there can give on finding that balance in one’s schedule (for “work” and “play” tasks) would be great!

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      You’re speaking my language, Sherry! That’s my biggest struggle too personally — it’s so easy to get caught up in other, legitimately important stuff and not have the time for creative time, self-care, and other things that bring us joy.

      If you haven’t already, definitely check out our MarieTV episode about important vs. urgent for a few tips:

      I’m not always great at it myself, but I have the most success when I schedule in time for play or creativity — even if it’s just once a week. It encourages me to follow through, and it also helps keep my mind from wandering during “work” time if I know I have play time coming up. I’ve started referring to it as “recess” recently, which helps a lot! 🙂

      I hope that helps, and that you take a little time here and there to play. It really is such an important part of our lives and too often neglected!

  84. I’ve started doing something similar, only not with my to-do list, but each night I review my big life priorities and simply put a check for yes if I took an action that leads to my right life. Then I put a fresh set of big priority questions in my journal for the next day. I was always relatively good at the daily stuff, but lacked focus when it came to what I wanted in my life in the future. This gives me a concrete way to track progress against things like was I calm during typically stressful encounters?

  85. One HUGE tip I learned that has helped me prioritize and be more productive is Eben Pagan’s 60/60/30 rule. Each 60 minute session (really 55 minutes with a 5 minute break) is for high priority items, and 30 minutes are for rejuvenation. I never took time for rejuvenation and that was a game changer.
    He has a course on Productivity that is well worth taking…

  86. I use the app CommitTo3. They say the most successful people in the world tend to commit to doing only 3 things each day. Each night I log in the 3 most important things I want to get done the next day and my “team” (friends, family, coworkers) hold me accountable. They get an email each time I check something off my list and I see their progress too. Then we can celebrate eachother at the end of each day!! Total game changer for my productivity!!

  87. Am I the only one who gets serious gratification from checking things off of a list? Sometimes if I do something that’s not on it…I add it just to cross it off.

    When I started out as a solo contractor I started using Asana (free and super easy to set up) to add my tasks to, and now that I have a few contractors working for me, it is a great project management tool.

    I add everything to Asana…personal phone calls and errands, paying bills, and all of my work projects of course. Being able to have a snapshot of the week allows me to see where everything fits in and keeps me from feeling overwhelmed…knowing everything has its place in time.

    I also live by my gmail calendar. I put all of my workouts & yoga classes on it as well as appointments, calls, concerts and personal time. Looking at that against my to-do list gives me a good idea of when I can fit things in as well as how I can schedule time with my clients moving forward. Also having my personal items on my calendar gives them importance…we need to remember that life is about balance!

    Now that I am starting a new nutrition business, I tied my online scheduling program into my gmail calendar so it is a full view of what is coming up. The fact that all of this syncs to my phone so I can see what’s coming up the next day is just technology at it’s finest.

    I constantly have so many things to do with 2 businesses at the moment I would lose my mind if I didn’t have it written out.

    Great comment about not waking up and just going through emails first thing and being sucked into your day. It’s so easy to do if you don’t have a plan! I always set a time when I’m going to start working so that I can fit in some personal time in the morning before “work starts.”

  88. I started planning my day like this day-by-day in the last year and it’s helped a lot. I’ve always been a planner but I did it differently with less success. The last few years in school, I actually used to get so deep into what I was doing, I’d have the whole week planned out a week ahead of time. I found this to be detrimental because it didn’t allow me the flexibility of dealing with the little things that’d come up through the week or the day. Instead now, I make a list of the general things I want completed this week and then every evening I go over all the unexpected things I have (a visit from Dad or an emergency trip to the doctor or dentist) and then I pick a few tasks from the list that I know I can complete along the way. I make sure I always include at least 2 things (more if I have more time) that is important to me; tasks towards my business or personal growth.
    I used to do pen and paper, but after trying many different apps I found that Trello in combination with Google calendar works the best for me. I have all my daily to do lists together along with bigger project lists, grocery lists, books list, pretty much anything you can put in a list, all in one place.

  89. I really love that Marie mentioned figuring out how long each task would take each day. I’ve never really taken the time to figure out how long my tasks would take, so often I would end up disappointed because I wouldn’t get enough done. So smart!

  90. This was perfect! I had been scheduling my day the morning of but you’re so right, it’s so much better to do it the night before. I have a full time corporate job, running my Health Coaching business on the side AND I have an adorable toddler and husband to tend to every day. Planning and organizing my day is crucial for me but I never thought of planning it the day before. Big “duh” moment for me. Thanks so much, Marie!


  91. Panto

    I do this often. Very good habit. When I don’t I notice my work suffers.

  92. This is so great-

    Straight forward and in a strange way… obvious

    You really do share such wonderful do-able ideas and ‘things you’ve learned’ on Marie TV- much appreciated


  93. Thanks Marie! I relate to this as I also travel a lot for work. Here’s my tip:
    I clear my desk or working space. If there’s a clutter on my desk, there’s clutter in my head.

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      YES! Awesome tip, Bev.

  94. Thanks for this simple reminder, Marie. It’s all in the plan- the 6 P’s. I learned years ago from a bud of mine:Proper planning prevents piss poor performance.
    I set my to do list in a.m. After run and mediation in the a.m.I’m fresh and ready to tackle life’s problems. Keep ROCKIN!


  95. Sherry

    I keep meaning to create a “non-negotiable” schedule for myself to start my days off in a more positive, productive, potentially energetic way.

    I just glanced across my desk and saw a yellow post-it that has every task crossed off except for the most important one:

    “Create that non-negotiable schedule.”

    *sigh* (LOL.)

    See, this is why I appreciate Marie. She always seems to remind me of just what I need to focus on, right when I need it. 🙂

  96. I tried the evening list and it just didn’t work out for me. I’d look at it in the morning and think “who wrote this? I’m not doing it”. I’m like a different person in the morning and I like my flow.

    For this reason I plan my day and most important things to do in the morning, before anyone has a chance to mess up my day 🙂
    In the evening I write a short review that helps me plan better in the future.

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Great tip, Nela! I tend to err on the side of writing my daily plan in the morning too myself, though I’ve had good luck with both ways.

      Thanks for tuning in!

  97. Anna

    Great advice. FWIW I use David Allen’s GTD method on Things app and PaymoPlus for automatic time monitoring/billing clients and Workrave to make sure I stop work and refocus often. (not affiliated)

    Recently I realised that I was using GTD for “work” stuff but actually some of the most important stuff (for me, resting and napping) I wasn’t regarding as a “to-do”. Actually, if I don’t rest enough I get sick very quickly and then sometimes can’t work for months – so rest is critical to my work! I now have a non-negotiable nap time after lunch, and don’t feel guilty about it any more. 🙂

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Ooh, non-negotiable nap sounds amazing, Anna!

  98. Thanks Marie for this great tip…you know when you find something to look forward to each week – you’re it! Prioritizing before bed allows your subconscious to defrag and reset for the next day. Using this tip will allow you to wake up less anxious and ready for whatever comes your way.

    Btw – so excited about the copy cure! Thanks again!!

  99. I travel extensively for work and have two sets of daily routines: work at home and work on the road. Planning the night before is a must!

    For your nanna’s greeting card, have you tried an online print and mail center? I’m the world’s worst card sender so I buy the card online, personalize it, and have them print and mail it. 5 minutes instead of 30. And I never find that card on my desk months later, just waiting for a stamp…

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Debby, I love the idea of having two sets of daily routines — really helpful. Also, the the print and mail center sounds like such a great solution!

      Thanks so much for tuning in this week 🙂

  100. Waking up at 4am M-F & getting the most important things done like my Bible reading, meditation and exercise!

  101. For the first 20 years of my professional life, I used the Franklin Covey agendas to do exactly what you describe, plus prioritizing A,B,C tasks. It was so natural and I got lots done. In the last few years, I’ve been really working hard on relaxing (ha ha!). I’m trying to leave more space for going with the flow – following inner guidance, not being so schedule/plan-tied. Trying to find the balance between hyper-organized and room for guidance is really tricky. Any advice on that?

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Great question, Dominique. I completely hear where you’re coming from! In my own life, I’ve generally erred on the side of doing waaaay too many lists myself and haven’t been so good at relaxing either.

      I once experimented with consciously not doing any lists AT ALL for several months. I’m not sure I’d necessarily recommend that since it felt a bit like jumping off a trapeze platform without a net, but it was a fascinating experiment. It turns out the most urgent “to-do’s” still got done, and I had a bit more mental space for relaxing and going with the flow.

      Maybe you might try experimenting with having a block of “unscheduled” time — like 2-3 hours at some point during a weekday, or maybe one full weekend day, where you just allow yourself to play around with doing whatever it is your brain feels like doing. You can always add more or less “unscheduled” time as you need, but it might inspire some thoughts about finding that balance.

      That’s just a few ideas from my own experience, but I hope it sparks a few ideas for you!

      • Thanks Caroline! Great advice. It’s where I’ve been leaning lately. 🙂

    • Tatiana Queen

      I am learning to create with my feminine power and how to go with the flow… What has been a tremendous help is to tune into myself and ask what is my next step and act on it immediately. Hope it helps!)

      • Thanks Tatiana – yes, that’s what I do as well. As an intuitive, I receive a lot of guidance that way. It’s blending that with the hyper-planning that Marie talks about. Letting the intuition lead and the hyper-planner implement is probably the best way to go. A harmonious union of right and left brain.

  102. Bal

    Something so simple, but so effective!

  103. Jocelyn Hishon

    I agree with you when you say plan your next day, proceeding day, and don’t visit your emails until you have the ‘to do’ list completed really for the day. Makes life flow so much easier. Another technique I use is; I make up my list at the beginning of the day, then before working out the time-slot for each of these, I work out, the jobs that I least want to do, or that will take the most time, and these become the priority. They are slotted in at the beginning of the day, when I am most vital and clear thinking.

  104. I’m not sure I could exist without my daily to-do lists. I started them back in the 80’s on index cards and still use them! I don’t trust myself to remember everything so having these handy-dandy cards takes away lots of stress. Thanks for the validation I’m on the right track.

  105. Thanks for this Marie – I really like the thought of going to bed with your next day’s ‘to do’ list already done. There are two things that I do to make sure my day goes well and smooth: each night I get a pot of coffee ready. Grind the beans (leave in grinder), pour water, put in filter. In the morning: glug back a big glass of water after I pour the coffee grinds into the pot. Then I press the brew button and presto! After my shower, I’m rewarded with fresh java.

  106. Mary Lahti

    Hi Marie, thanks. Good to know that this is a process I have been doing since I can remember. It’s the day-before-school thing that I migrated into the day/work life. It certainly made me feel more comfortable before going to bed too. I didn’t have to worry the next day about finding something in a rush, or forgetting a task or wondering if my shoes were the SAME color or even the same shoe as I dashed out the door. AND it made it much easier to reschedule if something unexpected came up. But the biggest trick is to make sure I do it before I get sleepy. So I splash some cool water on my face to wake myself up to complete that task. Have a great productive day.

  107. Hi Marie,

    I’m totally there with you! I do this everyday too. But I don’t yet add in the time frames.

    I will be tonight!



  108. Jenn

    Marie – thanks for sharing this. I am sure you have heard this from others but I have heard this piece of advice before. However, I really appreciated hearing how you make your list (and you can never hear good advice just once). I am a part time teacher, staying at home with my kids for the summer, working on a research project and taking a class PLUS I have been dreaming about starting a recipe reviewing site and seem to never find the time. My days rarely follow the same schedule even though I try to set routines for myself and my kids. Need less to say this was very timely! I guess I should start typing and make my plan for tomorrow.

  109. Monique

    I have just started using the bullet journal for organizing my tasks, so far so good.

    I have accomplished loads by grouping tasks.

  110. Great episode Marie. I do this and I find it so helpful. When I forget about it, I get halfway through the day and realise that I have no solid intention for what needs to happen for the day – and then no wonder I’m not meeting my goals! Watching this has reinforced to me to make sure I do it every night!
    I also love the video you had a while back about things that are important and things that are urgent. That really helped to me to view it in this way. So I now don’t do emails for social media first thing – I get some important stuff done! Because the emails and fb will get done no matter when I check them.
    Love it Marie 🙂

  111. Bethany

    Hola, Marie!

    thank you so much for this awesome video! I totally agree with you- planning out your day from the night before is really helpful. I can actually get a little bit overzealous with my planning.

    I think something else that is super important is to take some time each morning to give yourself a little pep talk. I say my daily affirmations in the shower each morning and then at night I take literally 30 seconds to pat myself on the back for everything I accomplished + forgive myself for all that didn’t get done. I’m a much happier and WAY more productive person

  112. Hi Marie and team,
    I love these videos, they’ve been spurring me on for four years now! Thank you. Since becoming an entrepreneur, I’ve discovered that taking charge of my time and self-managing my focus has been one of the richest areas of reward on the slow n steady-growth path to organising my time and priorities. Mapping out my year, then quarter, and month to month, helps me understand the reality of how I’ll need to spend my days, just like Marie said. Planning the days the night before gives me the self assertion I need to say yes to my business and no where I need to. It gives me a schedule to take myself and my commitment to my business seriously even in its baby stages. I fully recommend it.

  113. Thank you for this Marie! I was SO afraid your tip was gonna be 4 minutes of meditation!! Cant handle that -but planning the night before – so simple, but so effective!
    I have used Erin Condrens planners in the past but looking for something new I can use for personal and work..any feedback from others appreciated!

  114. Hi Carol
    I tried to find something for years after originally using Coveys planner in 2000 but couldn’t find anything so I created my own works a dream with a cool little feature called Dump Chunk Do and ti is the only software in the world that has 3 products in 1 (coaching. goals setting and time management) I hope my enthusiasm doesnt across like a sales pitch. I just get so excited.

  115. Very helpful! I am dying to know if Marie is a paper or digital planner gal? I am a bit of both myself but I absolutely need certain things to be written on paper. I prefer paper. However, I also need the alerts.

    Thank you for your tip!

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Thanks so much for tuning in, Jennifer! Our whole team uses Google Calendar, so I know that’s something Marie uses for sure 🙂

  116. Karen

    So true, Marie. The separation is in the preparation! Another thing that works is getting my clothes ready for the next day. Planning out meals, too. Oh, and I do as much tidying up around the house as I can before going to bed. It really clears my head and helps me sleep better.

  117. Marie, this was my favorite episode ever! I loved that you shared a personal example of your own, it always inspires me with new ideas (& reminds me I’m not doing too bad either!). Please keep sharing your gifts, your work does change lives 🙂

  118. How did you know what I needed to hear today!? 😉 I recently noticed how much time I waste by letting myself get so distracted! There’s just so many exciting things to see, watch, read and do. One thing I do everyday to help keep me focus, however, is taking a walk around the block. It clears my mind, gets me away from the computer for a few minutes and awakens my body. Great episode, Marie!

  119. It’s a cliche, but those that don’t plan, plan to fail by default. Great post!

  120. As an Efficiency Expert, I LOVE this episode!

    One of the things I recommend is that you find what works for you – toolwise – and stick with that. Trying ‘the latest and greatest’ tool is pointless if it means you actually become less efficient and productive in the meantime.

    If you’re a pen and paper person, use it!

    If you’re an app person, use them!

    When creating your list, I like to use the following headings:
    Task name
    Category (work, home, personal, website, business etc)
    Approximate duration
    Desired due date

    I love checklists 🙂 Thanks for covering such an important topic!

  121. This was just what I needed! I’m involved in doing so many different things that I end up being scattered and inconsistent. I’ve tried planning a week ahead but that didn’t last too long. I’m going to practice setting up my day the night before to supplement my weekly schedule.

    There’s so much going on for me
    An Indie Music career
    Launching a coaching business
    I just wrote my first book and released the first single from my upcoming EP

    So you can see why it’s like a whirlwind in my head. I’m going to try this I think it will help

  122. Thank you for this episode Marie, it was beautiful (as well as your hair as usual, I think you totally don’t need that haircut 🙂

    It’s funny that I have a very similar but slightly different method for managing my crazy schedule. I am a freelance copywriter and designer – I never have two days alike!

    But I keep a grand calendar that I fill in as I go. Some days are full, some empty, some overflowing. I map out things I am going to do and I use difference font size for the most important things and smaller size font for the less essential ones (or that take just a few minutes).

    As i do this I create a theme for each day – I know that what I wrote with the biggest size font is what’s most important for that day and gets done first. Then I move to the smallest font size items because those are quickies and I wanna get rid of them. And so it goes…

    I also put in the time and estimates as you do, Marie!

    Also I like to use flexible lists – because my life is flexible as well. I talk about it more in my last blog post, if anyone is interested check it out.

    Thanks for sharing!

  123. Ren

    This is puuurrfffeeccttt !! I have an unsure schedule everyday ! and this is the answer to my prayers! boy ! how simple is that yo ! thank u mariee!!!

  124. Hi Marie, great video. This video came just at the right time. To be honest I never had any form of planning until now. I will start to implement it and finger crossed I should start to see more productivity rather than busyness.

  125. Thanks for another great video Marie!

    Planning for the next day is so helpful when you rely on being self-motivated. I used to have such a hard time getting out of bed and into my day because I felt overwhelmed with my to-do-list and what to tackle on that day. But now I’m prepared and ready to go…well, most days at least 😉 And on the days where I haven’t pre-planned the day before, I feel so much more confident that I can get up and sort my plan out pretty quickly because I’m used to going through the process, even if it’s at the different time of day. I also created my own day planner template that works for me which has made a huge difference.

  126. So BUSTED! I’m sitting here, watching this in my jammies. I haven’t showered, or anything yet. I’m going, I’m going… 🙂
    Thanks for the kick in the butt. I know this stuff.

  127. Tania Angelis

    Hey Marie – that’s great advice thank you! I have recently started doing this and it’s really making a difference. As I put my list together for the next day, I prioritise it and look at what is most important to do that day – and do that one item first. Then no 2, no 3, and so on.

    The other thing I do now is I also re-check my list when I go to start my day (after doing all the things that keep my inner self aglow – Tapping, walking meditation with the dogs, feeding the horses and visualising my dreams coming true). By re-checking that things are in the right order it helps me to stay on track. Sometimes by sleeping on it, I realise that the order of my list isn’t quite right, so I change the order 🙂

    Oh and I have recently discovered some gorgeous pens called InkJoy which come in all the colours of the rainbow and so I write my list in a different coloured ink every day! And I have discovered that my favourite colour to write in is pink 🙂

    Two other tips for your daily list:

    1: Take out the word “To” from “To Do” and call it a Do list – ‘to do’ puts things in the future and makes them vague. ‘Do’ is a command and we are hardwired to respond to commands!


    2. Rename it altogether into something that really resonates with you personally: so my list in now called my “Daily Dreams Come True Action Steps” list!

    Thanks as always for being such a great source of inspiration and information Marie – I totally love what you do and how you do it 🙂

  128. I saw this idea years ago and have been using it ever since. My daily planner has 4 columns. One called “blue sky” for projects. One called “green machine.” I’m guessing you can figure out what that one is for. One called “red tape” for all the busy bee stuff and one called “mellow yellow” for me time. What I like about this layout is I can visually see how much time I spend in each category and it helps me make sure I take the me time that is so important and so easily skipped.

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Wow, I love that tip, Robin! I definitely have to give that a try – it sounds amazing. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  129. Jackline Makandi

    This is great tip Marie! It works so well. it has been working for me!

  130. Hi, Marie and all!

    I use a to-do list in a notebook, and my appointments are also on Google calendar, with reminders.

    My seasonal events (i.e. contests, webinars, etc. are in both places too.

    I do plan my day before, but not in great detail – I’ll try to see how this would work for me.

    Thanks again,

  131. Liz

    Thanks again for a very informative TV. I still need to plan my days properly and I will start with your great Tip.

  132. Gail

    I so struggle with finding my authentic voice. This video was brilliant – than you Marie & Dr Shefali.
    My number one trigger is criticism (real or perceived) It can cripple me for a day, or week, or months.
    Also top of the list is indecision.
    I believe I am so disconnected from my authentic self and that little voice or intuition within I just have a super hard time standing my ground or deciding what direction to go in.

  133. Katie

    I love you Marie!

    • Chelsea - Team Forleo

      We love you back, Katie! xoxo

  134. Marie! thank you for this nugget of wisdom this morning — it is awesomeness. I have habitually done the “work” review at the end of my morning sadhana, right after setting my work intentions (which is after my meditation and gratitudes), and just before opening up the laptop and email. I choose the one thing (usually the most onerous one thing) that will make me feel successful, declare it to be my “frog” for the day, label it as such on my daytimer, and then get ‘er done!

    tonight I am going to try your method of going over my daytimer 30 minutes before I go to sleep (just before my evening meditation), I will choose my frog and know how my day will look. can’t wait to see how combining these approaches work out!

  135. Hi Marie!

    Thank you for this video! i needed a simple doable way to organize myself. This video was perfect!


  136. Ania

    Thi is SO true!
    Guys, could you recommend any iphone apps for easy scheduling your day?

    • Chelsea - Team Forleo

      Yes, absolutely! We use Google for a lot of stuff — almost everything.

      Using a combination of Google Drive, Docs, and Calendar allows for seamless integration between devices, especially with their apps, and has worked well for us. Google calendar is such an easy way to schedule things and invite people to meetings.

      Basecamp, Due, Wunderlist, Any.Do, Todoist, Trello, Workflowy, and Rescuetime are all great for tools productivity as well, and just helping with project and task management each day too.

      This article has a pretty hefty list as well if you want some more scheduling tools:

      Hope that helps. Others feel free to chime in here too and share what works for you!

  137. thanks Marie!! I totally DO this every night it is my fav thing to do and I feel so good and clear headed!

    it’s all in the calendar work 🙂 🙂

  138. Pixie Brenda

    Hi Marie,

    Thank you for another great video. I absolutely love all your advice and appreciate it so much. I have a very specific question about time management for which I thought you may be able to help.

    I am a 50 year old female who retired from my full-time job in order to be the primary caregiver to my precious granddaughters, ages 3 and 1. I do work part-time as a Disney Authorized Travel Agent and that is my only real source of income. In my job, I plan complete trips for clients — everything from A to Z. However, I have the girls every day from 6:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

    Sometimes in my job I receive calls from clients or I must call my clients while I have the girls. Trying to be professional and give the impression that I am in an office setting is difficult when that is just the same time that one of the girls has a breakdown, gets hungry, cries because it is naptime. It is very frustrating to me. Sometimes I have to let the call roll to voicemail and call the client back but I HATE not being available when they call so I try to avoid that.

    A friend suggested that I set my hours for work to 4-10 pm and Saturdays but I don’t want to limit my clientele by having someone feel that I will not be available when they are available so I don’t want to set hours in stone.

    Can you please help me with some ways I can do both? I wake up at 5:40 every morning to be able to welcome the girls and I work 16 hour days to get everything done. I am really in need of some advice.

    Thank you so much, in advance, for any help you can provide. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate it.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      This is a really good question, Pixie. This is just a thought, but I know a lot of people outside the US visit Disney, so what if you specialized in international clients? That way, if your hours were 4-10pm your time, it just might be the perfect “work hours” for someone in a different time zone.

      • Pixie Brenda

        That is an extremely interesting perspective, Mandy, thank you! I must admit that I have never thought of that before. Ninety-nine percent of my clientele is based on referrals from past clients or repeat clients so I am pretty busy already. That is a great idea, though, and I truly appreciate it.

  139. Thanks Marie! This was a helpful tip on staying organized and on track! I like to do a little meditation session each morning, followed by a 5 min daily visualization of what I want to have happen that day. Not super organized, but it does helpful get in my head and out into the universe of what I want to actualize!

  140. sue sammon

    This is such a brilliant idea. I must admit I’m guilty of just turning on the computer and see what business comes in and doing admin to fill in the gaps with the odd bout of client mail outs. This has also cut out the stress and guilt of not getting through your day. You have everything allocated so you can concentrate on the task at hand. Thanks so much Marie!

  141. What a great idea, and so simple –why didn’t I think of that? 😉
    It’s already giving me better sleep at night!

  142. simple and effect. Thanks.
    I use a hardcopy diary verses electronic as better visually to see what’s planned for the day. I do add personal stuff, etc, but will add the titles: task/personal stuff going forward. And your example of including spin class lifts the (sometimes) guilt with scheduling gym or swim, when I’ve written it in my diary I’ve felt guilty in the past sometimes. Now I will not :)) cheers! Nice balance between working and including personal too.

  143. Yes, yes YES!! I plan my day the night before, and it’s telling how much my productivity changes when I forget, or don’t plan my day! It truely works but sometimes I just don’t feel motivated, to it helps to hear what others do as well!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      I can totally relate, Angela. If I wait till the very end of the day to write my list I’m often tired and just don’t want to think about it! Maybe try writing your list at midday, then if you get more things done than you anticipated you’ll have the satisfaction of crossing things off first thing in the morning!

  144. Lisa J.

    Thank you for this tip. I started doing it the same night and although it’s only been a couple of days it has helped immensely. I find it helps me to focus and then when I wake up I know the list is there and love checking off what I need to do. If I miss one or can’t get it completed, I carry it over to the next day.

  145. This stuff works. The ROI of planning few minutes for me is getting 2x more done. The difference is, I plan in the morning. It’s when my mind is clearer.

    Here is how plan:

    1. Write down my four projects/goals with 4 milestones that need to be completed

    2. Pick the one MUST, the thing I need to get done today to make this day a success

    3. Divide the MUST in milestones that I complete in 4 focus blocks which are 45 minute blocks of work with no distraction and interruption

    4. After each focus block I take a 15 minute renewing break, like stretching, walking, drinking water…

    5. Write down people I need to reach out to, and people I need to respond to

    6. At the end of the day, I write one sentence about what I’ve learned today that I could improve tomorrow – today it was “clean your desk before you go to bed”

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      What an excellent system, Fabian! And you’re so right about the importance of writing your list when you’re mind is clear.

  146. Michael

    I do review my plan for the next day the night before and again in the morning when I am riding the subway to see my first client of the day. This action does wonders for me.

  147. This is a great tip!

    Instead of a calendar I chose to put a sticky note on my desktop.

    I try to pinpoint what will be the most important thing of the next day before I close my laptop at night.

    I write it into the sticky note and then see it first thing in the morning.

    PS: That jalapeño joke was hilarious!

    Great tip Marie 🙂

  148. Marie, this is one of my favorite videos ever.

    I’m a mama working to build my biz … while my kids (4 and 6-year old boys) are home for the Summer, and while my husband’s work schedule has become much more all over the map.

    For years, I’ve tried numerous ways to cook up the “perfect weekly schedule” – this Summer + this video burst that bubble in the very best possible way.

    Now I have a clue how to make this work, and am ridiculously grateful.

    Plus, when I googled your workout videos, I found the brilliant video where you suggest doing 6 10 minute workouts throughout the day. Whoa, total game-changer. I’m 50 minutes in to the first hour of exercise I’ve done in ages, and feel SO. MUCH. BETTER.

    Thank you for being such a bright shining light and giving such amazing, practical tips.

  149. This is great and I like another viewer’s tip of not being attached to doing your planning at night. I try to finish my “work day” with planning for the next day. I know for myself that waking up without a plan is a sure fire way for a unsatisfying day. Without planning my day, I will be busy but not productive. As Marie says, it’s about getting the right things done!

    What I am most challenged by, is determining how much time to schedule for a specific projects or tasks.
    For recurring tasks, I track the time and then average it for scheduling. For others it’s very hard for me to judge.
    One pitfall I encounter is treating projects like tasks! I’ll enter it into my calendar as if it was a task, but really it’s more of a project involving many steps or processes. So I need to remember to ask myself, what is the next actionable step?
    I hope sharing my challenges and insights helps, and if anyone has tips on how to determine how much time to schedule for specific tasks, I’m all ears!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      You’re so right, Dawn. It’s hard to know how much time to allot for individual tasks. Marie has a tip on that, too: Give yourself a deadline because people tend to use as much time as they have available. She explains it more in depth here, if you’re interested:

  150. Jen

    Great video! I think this is the one thing I’m really good at. I have a notebook that everything related to business ideas goes into. I also have one for marketing and one for clients. Works perfectly and in general, I’m super-organized.

    Checking things off or using stickers on a calendar are my go-to methods for getting things done.

  151. maylin

    I think this is THE best thing to do bar none. It’s how I got my daily exercise and meditation practice to become a habit. I also appreciate Marie’s videos, with a side of cute guy, thanks for that Marie. Please keep adding all your cute employees. Me likee XD

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Haha yes, we love featuring our cute Team Forleo folks, Maylin! 😉

  152. Great Video as Usual.

    Here’s the Ultimate list of productivity tools that I hope can save a ton of your time and help you stay productive.

    Visit here:

  153. I’ve tried planning the night before and it does work, but I’m yet to make it a habit. I do find myself planning my day though before I get out of my nice warm bed. I think it’s bordering on visualisation.

    Thanks, for the reminder of giving this another go and turning into a habit.

  154. I could not LIVE without this kind of planning. I’ve always worked with a to-do list. Marie, you’ve convinced me that doing it the night before is the key, though. Thanks!
    I also do something a little nutty the night before – I set several alarms on my phone to remind me to switch to the next activity throughout the day. This really helps when I go to Facebook to post/market a new listing in my shop and find myself looking at pictures of my college roommate’s husband’s law partner’s grandmother’s 90th birthday party. . . .aw, what a nice assisted living place.. .I wonder if I’ll end up at. . . . RRRRRRRRing!!

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Oooh I love that idea, Dori! Setting an alarm is brilliant. It’s so easy to get sucked into Facebook sometimes — your description cracked me up 😉

  155. This is soooo soooo true, I have done this a couple times and it helps soooo much!!

  156. I totally agree. When I used to do this, it was such a big help.
    I am going to start using this tip once again and plan my day the night before.
    Not only is it a huge help for me to know what my day is supposed to be like in advance, it is also helpful in getting me out of bed on time to make sure I am not the one who messes up my schedule.

  157. lpaulick


    I do have a question about this — maybe you don’t want to be the one to help with answers on the subject of “planning one’s life,” but I want to ask anyway: Is this really the way life works? Real life — not the personalized, planned-out-by-me life, but the only real one there is.

    Note: That is the view that makes sense to “me” — that life is not a personal thing; problem there is that I do want to live a life that I love, doing what I love; but I cannot do it the way it’s being suggested here…so it’s confusing.

    I make plans and have all kinds of things I wish to get done on any given day. I even have schedules to adhere to. The facts do not reside in those plans, though, in my experience. #1: Often, things change and what really does happen is what happened; and #2: When I try to control in my own little inimitable way, I don’t leave myself open to whatever may be more a) important or b) enriching — especially the latter, since I’m not sure what “important” is.

    So I must question my own personal motives at all moments, if I have motives, which I am finding myself getting quite suspicious of.

    Remember Lennon’s “Life is what happens when you’re making other plans”?…


    • That is an interesting way to look at things and I have to agree with the Lennon quote. But in terms of running a business and getting day to day tasks done, having a list or plan for a list can greatly help to achieve your daily goals. I am not sure if that fits in the life goals you are referring to. But as a busy person that also wants to enjoy life, if I get my to-do list done quicker and more efficiently, I will have more time to enjoy the life I want to live outside of work. — just a thought. =)

  158. Cory

    Too funny – just before watching this video, at 9:30 PM, I was looking at what’s on deck for me tomorrow, and plugged in time to work on the 2 urgent projects I’m on. I also added the time to get to & from a lunch date & a kid’s orthodontist appointment, so I know when to leave.

    Yes, this does help. The work items & the family responsibilities always get done, but somehow I never get the “me” tasks in, like exercise.

  159. Leslie

    This idea is excellent! I really did “ahhh” right along with the script. What a simple and effective idea to plan the night before! I can see this helping the morning meditation practice to have that ‘to do’ list already organized and out of the head. I’m a gonna do it right now! Thanks Marie!

  160. Marie, this is amazing !!! 4 minutes to know exactly what I’m doing tomorrow instead of trying to do it the next morning. It works! It also helps me clear my brain before I go to sleep. I will be sharing this with my clients who are solopreneur women who want more time and freedom to be living life. I love your updates. Plus I love the jalopeno joke at the beginning.

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much, Amanda! We’re happy to hear you enjoyed this episode.

      Haha yes, the opening joke might be my new favorite too 😉

  161. I love the simplicity of this recommendation. Having a morning and nightly routine is key for me. Prayer, Bible reading and meditation help center me for the day ahead. I will definitely be adding this to my night routine! Thanks Marie!

  162. Thanks Marie, I love this video.

    I am going to move my planning from the morning to the night before. I would add to this that’s it’s important to think about whether things really need to be on your plan before you put them on there and also gauge how you are feeling about doing them in your body.

    I’m a Martha Beck Certified Coach and we use a system called the three Bs to help with tasks. The first B is to ask whether you can bin something (so not do it) the second is barter – this could be getting someone to help with something, swapping tasks or paying someone to do the task for you and the third one is bettering the task. To better something you consider how many different ways you could make the task that you need to do more fun. This can include rewards, breaks, improving your environment, whatever feels good.

    I think that in the personal items on the list it’s a good idea to put in self-care, as we often only write on our lists where we are trying to meet the needs of others. The list needs to also cover caring for ourselves.

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Great tips, Deborah! I love the 3 B’s — I’m definitely going to try that. And of course, adding in self-care is so important. 🙂

  163. I love the idea of planning your day out the night before!

    • Chelsea - Team Forleo

      YES. It’s a game-changer, Erin.

  164. Been living by this method for years – and it really does work!

    HOWEVER – for *THOSE OF US WITH KIDS* – I also HIGHLY recommend scheduling in some non-kid time to have your brain fully to yourself….. (particularly in Summer months.)

    Classes for them, day-camps, grandparent time, play-dates…. Just some time where you know it’ll be you, your brain, and your tasks (focus, baby – oooh yah! Excellent for productivity.) 🙂


  165. Chelsea - Team Forleo

    YES! Such a good tip, D.

  166. Elizabeth O

    Hi Marie,
    I’m currently struggling finically and yet I’m dreaming to open my own business! I want to open photography and design studio with my sister very soon. But I don’t know where to start. Friend of mine referred me to your channel and I thought I will check it out. I’m also a huge fan of Tony Robins and I’m going to his seminar in LA this October! I really want to change my life and stay focus and be able to find a way to succeed!! I know this is a very vague question however maybe you can give me a vague answer 🙂

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Hi Elizabeth, thank you so much for stopping by, and we’re so happy to hear that your friend referred you to us!

      One of my favorite MarieTV episodes about getting started on any big idea to life is this one:

      That’s a great place to start for some great nuggets of wisdom for exploring your first action steps. We also have nearly 250 MarieTV episodes that touch on many different aspects of business and life, so you’re welcome to explore our Archives for some more tips and insights to help support your business journey.

      We’re also happy to share some more episodes with you if there are any specific topics you’re looking for, so please feel free to reach out to us anytime at info AT marieforleo DOT com. We’re always happy to help!

  167. Such a great tip. I only do this about half the time but when I do, I achieve SO much more in my day!!

  168. Paulina

    My days usually have similar schedule but I always want to get a lot done other than work. There are so many things out there I am interested in and trying to incorporate into my daily routine. What I learnt works for me is a simple to-do list that I tick off as I complete each task. This way I get much more done than when not using a to-do list and, even if I miss out a small task or two due to lack of time, I still feel this sense of achievement at the end of the day 🙂

    • I love this because it relates so much to my day. My only issue is that I find my to do list doesn’t get checked off and I end up with a to-do booklet!
      Great job at keeping your tasks in order!

  169. This was an amazing video Marie! Sometimes I feel like I have so many ideas, and no time to write them all. I’m actually having a free webinar, and I go into planning ahead. The webinar is about organizing your blog. The tips mentioned here were truly helpful. My favorite was, of course, #7.
    One thing I do to write blog posts when I’m feeling overwhelmed is to write them on Evernote while I’m on the go. That has truly revolutionized my blog’s productivity.
    I’m 13 years old, so having to balance blogging, and schoolwork can be a challenge- but I love doing it!

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Wonderful, Sacia! We’re so happy you found this episode helpful. We love productivity 😉

  170. I use Basecamp to ask out all of my work like Marie had mentioned. I put time slots next to EVERY task to make sure I have enough time in the day to get it all done. It seems like I often underestimate the amount of time bigger projects will take … so maybe I need to give myself more room for it. One major thing that helps me though is to always start my day off with the BIGGEST or hardest task. I don’t check email first and I don’t start with the 5-10min tasks. I knock out the biggest giant when I’m sharp & fresh in the morning, that way my afternoon is filled with tasks that don’t require as attention to detail.

    • Chelsea - Team Forleo

      Love it. Those are GREAT tips, Bryce! Keep doing what’s working for you.

  171. Guilherme Candido


    That simple method is really productive.
    I use it since july and it changed my life in a good way.

    See you.

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much, Guilherme — we’re so glad to hear it’s been helpful to you! 🙂

  172. This is a great video and something I really need to implement into my day. My biggest problem is that I have set things I HAVE to do business-wise= fulfilling orders by designing, interacting with customers, producing the artwork, creating, packing, shipping, etc. And then I have things I WANT to do for the business = new product ideas, social media, research and development, business education, etc.
    Right now my day is like a ping pong ball going in all different directions, bouncing from wall to wall to wall, non-stop.
    I find if I write in a planner, as opposed to putting in an electronic calendar, I am more aware of the task. But I really need to schedule in time for the wants so I don’t find myself so torn between the needs and wants of business. In fact, maybe prioritizing the wants as needs would help.

    Thank you for the continued insight and wisdom.

  173. Merari

    This is awesome advice. Most productivity is so strict, it was refreshing to hear you say you let your inner girl watch another episode. That is one of my tricks I have been using myself is to give up the dream of never falling off the wagon.

    I’ve learned to accept that I will definitely “fall off” and often times it’s from creativity. By planning my day the night before I always ask myself, “should I allow myself to get off my schedule tonight?” Because “I’m allowed to” I often say no I don’t want to and keep on my schedule. It’s a bit of reverse psychology but it totally works.

  174. Gina Standard

    For me, starting a bullet journal has been a game changer. It’s reduced feeling the need to have a notebook for everything, and I can implement a monthly calendar and weekly calendar while also tracking my habits, inspirational quotes, and everything else under the sun. Before I finish my work day, I wrap up by writing my to do list for the following today, split into my work to do list, and my personal to do list.

  175. I plan every day and it works. Thank you, Marie.

  176. I’ve been time blocking for more than a decade and it’s the most important productivity habit I have ever implemented. It allows me to commit to only what I can possibly accomplish in one day but it also forces me to a) stick to one task at a time and b) work like a bandit to finish that task within the time frame I have allotted for it. I simply use an Excel spreadsheet to track my time blocks, and this allows me to easily move tasks to other days or weeks if I’m just not going to get to something.

  177. Sandy

    Love it-
    I kind of do that just need to be more consistent.
    One thing really helps me is: start my list the night before but also go over the top three tasks and projects the morning off. I try to create a routine – I use Success wizard App to help me check things off (I like checking things off ?)

  178. Dear Marie! Thankyou so much for thisperfect tip! Not only shall I Plan my day the night before but I have already planned out tomorrow this instant, which here in Milan is 15.50 in the Afternoon;)

    THANKXX so much!
    Lots of Love,

  179. I am so grateful that you introduced me to Urgent vs Important list. This literally changed EVerYTHIGN for me. I can resonate with EVERYTHING here. Cannot wait to try. the most important take away for me is to reverse engineer everything and give estimate for each task and project. that means taking inventory for my actions and other things. to give myself microscopic aspect and be productive. This is so massive shift.

    Thank you Marie and Team Forleo!

    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much for your kind note, Yuko! The Urgent vs. Important list is really amazing, and we hope you find it an incredible resource for your productivity. Thank you for watching!

  180. Wow!! How simply yet I have not been doing this- THANK YOU!! I will jump right on it!! Plan your day B-School peeps! #productive

  181. The way I like to schedule the best is to keep a Google calendar for long-term schedule and then every Sunday translate the week into a paper calendar. There’s something about having a tangible schedule + to do lists in front of me that really keeps me on track!

    I’m definitely going to try out the 4-minute review each day!

  182. I first plan out my day. Then I play it through in my mind and imagine the best possible version of that day. And finally I ask for Gods blessing.

  183. Love this video and B School which I just joined. My trick is tackling big important things first. Some people feel they have to clear out little emails and to do’s like writing checks, and getting out a tweet before working on big picture items, but those things always find a way to get done, the big picture is too often deterred. I do big items as my number one!

  184. Sarah

    Great advice! I’m hungry for legitimate and lasting change in my life and this is a great way to start. I’ve always flown by the seat of my pants and I know that’s not gonna work for me anymore if I want to achieve and grow in radically new and different ways. What a simple thing to do each night to make sure the precious time of each day is not lost to being unfocused and unplanned. 🙂

  185. erin

    Excellent. I am pretty good with my own time and discipline, but struggle with others not respecting the same. What suggestions do you have for wrapping up things that are scheduled for X amount of time but someone else decided to just keep going?

  186. This is so great! All the productivity tips I’ve seen don’t work for someone like me who has a very erratic and flexible schedule. I look forward to implementing this TODAY!

    • Jillian - Team Forleo

      We’re so glad this was helpful Sara, and we’re wishing you all the best as you implement these tips!

  187. I’m back (this video is listed as a resource inside The follow-through formula), and I since created a list of routine activity, and I simply check them off as I go, to make sure nothing gets forgotten.

  188. Oh WOW – I found with this video a GOLD nugget! Finally a clear and simple way of organizing my days. Especially the example Marie is giving here with her own schedule is just priceless. I have finally not only a great content-input but also a fantastic practical -content. Thank you SO much Marie ♥

  189. When it’s really important, I get an accountability buddy, that’s the best way for me with a large projects. But even sharing my daily goals with my BF over breakfast helps. If I tell someone, anyone that I’m going to do something, it motivates me to do it.

  190. Wow, yes I use this system though probably fewer appointments. I have started to resent the little things I have to do for my family as it breaks the flow – grocery shopping what a chore! In-boxing food is an major Hallelujah! Im learning to roll with the cancellations and rejig schedule, be easy about it, is another focal point. Meditation has really helped me release anxiety of feeling aggravated and negative, and inundated, which is ultimately limiting to creative ideas and activities. I have the ability now to turn my focus on realize its all coming together, focus on moving forward. This is not a race, it is all at my own speed- strong and sure to “Do it & Do it well” is the way forward. Listing is my big GO TO. One for the “Everything” broken down on Sunday, into parts over the course of one week, to work toward a completed goal at the end of the month, Making the list the night before is a must, in improved clarity and focus for the day ahead.

  191. Pam

    I plan the night before all the time. I work full time in marketing to pay the bills, but I also have a artistic enterprise I’m growing on the side. I get loads done during the week. I need to do this for Saturdays, because they often become an epic waste of time…is that too anal retentive?

  192. This is what I was actually looking for. I totally agree with all the points to gain ranking at local listings. Thanks!

  193. Great and simple I ussually do it in the morning, but the day befire is much better!
    I have a daily routine of ayurvedic and yoga practices to make sure I am fresh, clear headed, aligned, inspired and motivated. Even if I feel crap I will force myself to do these in a milder version just to charge my energy!

  194. I definitely like the thought of doing this the day before, it could be a really nice unwinding activity at the end of the day. I had never thought of estimating the time it would take to do these tasks, even the small ones like scheduling appointments. I love it! A friend of mine gave me a sweet notepad for “morning pages” but maybe I’ll make it the “nightly pages” to set me up for success the next day. Thanks!

  195. My new problem is I’m obsessed with your videos. I get addicted. Now I have something else to stop :).
    You are AMAZING Marie. I’m so grateful that we met.

  196. Jacki

    My schedule is more consistent nowadays (weird with retail, right?), and to help me build my business, I make sure every morning like clock work to get up at the same time every morning and then write for fifteen minutes! For me, that does a few things:

    1) Gives me the confidence to say, “Yes, I am a writer and I can write even when I’m half awake!”
    2) Gives me some consistency.

    If I end up skipping or stagnating on the writing, I feel like I’m being flaky and start losing my confidence, so this is there for a reason. Everything else I do, I plan a brief outline the night before and go from there

  197. I got some great tips.. and thanks for sharing

  198. ani

    Hi Team Forleo! the answer to this may be obvious – but why does marie keep chunks of space in between tasks ? Is this her standard practice? i tend to underestimate how long things take and the tasks bunch up against each other!

    • Sarah - Team Forleo

      Hi Ani! While the schedule in this video is just an example, you’re exactly right —leaving some space in between scheduled tasks offers some wiggle room in case things take longer than expected (which they often do). Check out this episode for more from Marie on scheduling:

      • ani

        thank you!

  199. In my other life I worked hard for someone else in the corporate world. I was fabulous at being organized and took responsibility for what I was being paid to do, time management was easy. After 20 years I changed jobs but was still working for someone else. I did spiritual work but was also working for that organization. Eventually, I kept doing the spiritual work but stopped working for anyone. But I also dropped the responsibility and organized ethic. Now that I’m working for myself and taking B-School, I know I can restart these wonderful skills but I’ll be doing it for myself in a field I love. When working for someone else you align to their schedule. Now I have to consciously arrange my day to suit me and to foster my business. This is so doable!

    • Julia - Team Forleo

      YES, Julie! This is totally doable, and you know you’ve done it before, so you’re absolutely capable of organizing your time effectively. We’re SO excited for you to apply all your wisdom and experience to your own business and could not be more honored to support you along the way in B-School! Team Forleo is cheering you ON over here!

  200. Patricia

    I will implement this on my daily routine! Calendar it , plan my day what a concept. I have a morning routine but through out the day is a job. this way I could be more productive! clever thank you!

  201. Stephanie

    My calendar is truly becoming my Success BFF! I have thought for a long time that I just needed to figure out where to fit things like meal planning and housework in at some point. But that nagging disappointed feeling I have at this approach will leave if I schedule tasks as well as my work life, appointments, etc. It’s like giving all your dollars a name in your budget, but with tasks and time. Super excited!

    • Jennifer - Team Forleo

      That is so exciting, Stephanie, productivity for the win! Glad you now have a system that works for you.

  202. This is critical. and I have often sucked at doing it. The really cool thing is:
    after you do the Marie Forleo bschool tool called overcoming problems in advance, and schedule and batch activities that are already there and have repeated frequency on my calendar, Looking at the next day the night before just allows me an opportunity to confirm those time slots for the things already scheduled, adding new items that I need to do tomorrow by COB, and add in the personal errands
    THANK YOU as always, Marie!!!!
    PS If you haven’t already taken the school you just have to do it it will change your life forever

  203. Trina Pecina

    I use Kelly Petriangeli’s Design my Day workbook. I fill out the scheduled events the night before (thank you for affirming my old school method) and then complete the gratitude & intention portion during my morning review. Depending on my schedule, I will complete the 3 MITs (Most Important Things) the night before or the day of. Thank you for all your amazing content. I am forever grateful to Tiny Buddha emails that led me to Kelly (B School affiliate) that then led me to Team Forleo!

  204. informative blog

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