Updated: May 26
If you aren't a personal development nerd like me, you probably don't know who Marie Forleo is. No worries. I got you. Marie Forleo is a badass, neurodivergent, multi-passionate entrepreneur who shows you practical ways to become the person you most want to be.
I discovered Marie through another business podcast. I was immediately drawn to her personality. She's enthusiastic and kind but not afraid to say what needs to be said. So I subscribed to her podcast and purchased her book; the rest was history.
What are time genius habits?
Time Genius habits are tangible action steps I learned through Marie's coaching program that help me make the most of my time. I love the idea of coaching and have been searching for the right program. So when Marie launched Time Genius near the end of September, I knew I had finally found a place to start! I wanted in. So, of course, I signed up.
I worked my way through Time Genius, and I learned a ton. However, I want to stay accountable, so I'll share my top seven takeaways from the program in this post. And, bonus! Keeping this record will help me compare future takeaways. It'll be interesting to see what differs about what resonates with me in a year. Here we go:
1. Focus Blocks
If it's not scheduled, it's not real. Giving myself chunks of time in my calendar every week to work on my priorities is the only thing that ensures I'm working toward my goals.
I schedule three 1-2 hour focus blocks throughout the week to give my undivided attention to reaching my goals.
2. Narrow Your Focus
When I begin my week, I need to know the most important thing I can work on. What item on my to-do list will have the most impact once accomplished? What's the number one task that will propel me toward my main goal?
That's what I need to work on during my focus blocks.
3. Do Not Disturb
Distractions are a momentum killer, and my phone is my biggest distraction. So why haven't I been using the do not disturb feature? It makes a huge difference.
Now, I turn on do not disturb at the beginning of my focus blocks. Then, if I'm having a tough time, I can also use focus mode, which blocks access to certain apps (like the clock app that's so addictive.)
I allow ten minutes at the end of my focus blocks to return any messages I may have missed.
Humans procrastinate for different reasons, including fear, perfectionism, and ADHD. But what if there's a deeper reason for our procrastination?
Before Time Genius, it didn't occur to me that it could be helpful in any way. But now I realize procrastination is a built-in alert that lets me know something's off. So if I'm procrastinating, I need to reflect on why.
5. Mise en Place
Mise en place is a French culinary term that means things in place. Of course, most of us know that prepping the night before makes our day run more smoothly, but there's something about giving it a fun name that my brain loves.
For me, mise en place includes washing and filling my water bottle, setting out my gym clothes, plugging in my phone, taking my meds, and completing my success plan and daily wins.
6. Daily Wins and Success Plan
My daily wins are a written record acknowledging how I stuck to my Time Genius habits. I identify three wins and one way to improve going forward.
My success plan is tomorrow's schedule. It includes my appointments, everyday tasks, focus blocks, and any notes I need on the day's priorities. Preparing my success plan allows me to do mise en place and helps to eliminate decision fatigue. Knowing what needs to be done enables me to use my brain power for the task instead of deciding what to do.
7. The Difference Between a Vision, Goal, and Activity
Your vision is the significant, long-term, end-game mental image of your future. It's the stuff of Pinterest boards and daydreams. Your vision is the "One day, I have/do/see..." wish that comes to mind when someone asks where you want to be in ten years.
Goals are clear, achievable objectives for yourself or your organization. For example, "I will increase my revenue by 10% by the end of quarter three" is a SMART goal. You can increase the likelihood of achieving your goals by making them specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.
Activities are the daily and weekly tasks that bring you closer to your goal. For example, if your goal is to do ten pushups in a row by your birthday successfully, half an hour of strength training focusing on arms, chest, back, and core five days a week is an activity you could use to reach your goal.
Until Next Time
Remember, we're all human, and none of us are perfect. I don't always use all of my Time Genius habits, and that's okay. I've learned to give myself more grace in the last few years. I can use the practices I need when I need them. Life doesn't have to be all or nothing.
It's the same for you. Use what works, toss the rest, and don't let time stress wear you down. If you need help giving yourself grace, consider booking a massage. It can do a world of good.