Prolific writer Ray Bradbury once said:

“Every morning I jump out of bed and step on a landmine. The landmine is me. After the explosion, I spend the rest of the day putting the pieces together.”

Having worked for myself for over a decade, I can relate to this. If I’m honest, most days for a lot of my adult life have been complete chaos.

I’ve seen some success, but I know my potential can go much further.

We all have 24 hours.

We also have the power to make a significant impact when we use those hours well.

What does using our time ‘well’ mean?

For me, it is asking myself the right questions and making positive decisions consistently.

This is why I created a worksheet for helping me clarify what I need to do.

I fill it in before the day starts. The evening before is best.

I’ve found that even 10 minutes of thoughtful preparation can equal hours of extra productivity.

I have purposefully tailored the questions to be extra specific. I use the questions to keep me focused, motivated and thinking about what matters.

It helps me be more productive.

It helps me feel more encouraged, fulfilled and enthusiastic.

It gets me into the habit of being more courageous.

“Courage is a habit, not a personality trait.”

It is attracting more wins and opportunities into my life.

Try it for yourself.

Not all of the questions will lead to tasks that are easy. Expect some challenge. It is in honouring these commitments that will lead to a richer life.

Some answers to these questions may stay the same for a long time, others will change daily, and others might evolve.

Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t get some of your tasks done. It’s not easy to hit all of it. The important thing is that you have interesting targets and you have some structure that you return to each day.

Here we go. Answer these as best as you can:

What will I make happen within five years, that matters more than anything?


What will I make happen within one year, that matters more than anything?


What will I make happen within one month, that matters more than anything?


What can I do to start this day positively that matters more than the rest?


What will I ensure gets done today that further develops my main craft/skill/mastery, which matters more than anything else in this area?

[Note: Choose something that gets done in its entirety, such as reading fifteen pages of a book, a drawing that takes 30 minutes, a 10-minute video, 40 minutes of physical training, or 1000 words of fiction written]


When exactly will this get done?


[Don’t forget. This MUST get done, so protect the time dedicated to this].

In addition to my craft-development work, what are three tasks that must get done today, if any?

List them in order of priority. It’s advised that you work through them, starting with the most difficult.




Who can I connect with today whose life would be improved by your doing so?

[Note: This is a ‘sending out good energy’ exercise — great for your well-being and those of others.]


Who are the three people (or more) I will contact today to generate opportunities in my life in the areas that matter most today?




What could I do that would enrich my social life, which matters more than anything else today?


What will I do today that scares me; takes me out of my comfort zone, that I know will improve me and my life?

“Do one thing every day that scares you.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt.

Put it down and do it. Be brave!


What big ASK will I make today?

Ask for something that most wouldn’t dare ask. What could you ask, from whom, that could lead to huge opportunity in your life? You might be surprised at what happens when you just ask.

It is when we stop to think about how far we can go, that things get interesting.

My big ask: __________________________________________

Which one person to ask? __________________________________________

Who else could I ask? __________________________________________

What will I do today that will benefit my health or state of mind, that matters more than anything?


What will I do today to expand my ‘extra-curricular’ world (even if just for ten minutes)?

[For example, learn Thai for 20 minutes; read ten pages of fiction; learn how to make an omelet]



I am considering putting together a booklet that features these kinds of questions, with space for notes, so that users can organise their days in a kind of planner.

Do let me know in the comments or via email if this interests you, and if you have any other additional questions or ideas you might add.

Thank you.

Did you find this useful?

Subscribe to my newsletter today to get updated on ideas like these (plus extras) that will help you live confidently and creatively.

Join over 20,000 subscribers, and you will receive my latest book: ‘Joining the Dots,’ for free.

Originally published at