My Life and Time-Management

Bob Dorney

Congratulations on your 100th meeting. As I reviewed my notes on the TIME Society it brought back many fond memories of the thoughts we have shared. I recalled how we came up with the acronym Time and Information Management for Excellence and how you built upon it.

The management of Time and Information will determine your success in life… but before you can manage you must determine why you want to manage and what information you want to manage.

Most of us want to manage time and information to get what we want out of life. Remember our 3 legged stool and how we made one leg our work or business… another family and friends… and the other our religion. No life can be successful if we neglect any of these legs. We must learn to balance our life so we devote time and knowledge to each leg of our life stool.

Information is power… the more we know about any subject, the easier it is to turn that information into the knowledge and how to use it to achieve the results you want.

We all have the same information available to us…hundreds of books have been written on any subject we choose to learn more about. It is all there waiting to be read… to be analyzed… and to be used to achieve any success we can visualize.

Most of us must work to earn the money we need for ourselves… for our families… and to help others. But work is for more than earning money… it summons our creative juices… it gives us satisfaction in the products we develop and produce. Working with others to achieve a common goal is one of the great satisfactions in life.

No life is worth living without religious beliefs. We need to have rules to live by or we have no purpose in life. I believe our earthly life is but a chapter in our eternal life… we need to gain knowledge and wisdom to live our life in harmony with our religious beliefs.

The last leg on our stool is family. We have many families in our life. Most of us believe our life live son in the children born from the love two people have for each other. The pride we have in our children is beyond any words we can say or write. The love two people have for each other is a strength that can make any goal in life achievable.

We need information and the knowledge of how to use it to be successful in our life journey. When we know what we want out of life… all we need to do is to manage our time to use information and knowledge to achieve our goals.

We all have the same time available to us ? 24 hours in a day… 168 hours in a week… 61,230 hours in a year… 2,452,800 hours in the 40 years most of us work. How we use these hours will determine our success in life. We need to plan how to use our time to achieve the goals we visualize.

The last word in our acronym is for excellence. Why not be the best we can be. With this solid foundation of values and information and a plan for our life, all we need to do is work and execute our plan… and we will get what we want out of life.

I have spent most of my life producing products to help people become successful. During those years I attended hundreds of seminars to gain the information to develop our products to help people achieve success. I learned that it is important to have tools to keep us on track to achieve our goals. Early in my life I developed my first value:

God created man in his own image. Look for the God in every man and woman and nurture it. As our company grew I developed my second value:

A good manager is like a chemist and will blend together people to make the team stronger than the individual. These two values have guided my every decision in life and I believe it is the basis for all the success I have enjoyed. Since I have retired, I realize how little I knew and how dependent I was on the people in my life.

You can only achieve excellence when you develop a plan… and gather together the people to help you achieve your goals. As I began to see my dreams and goals become a reality… I decided to develop rules that would keep me on track. This is the final plaque that I hung in my office to keep me focused on my goals for Day-Timers:


Any Goal is possible if you believe it is possible.

10 Rules for Success:

1. Visualize what you want or want to become.
2. Determine that it is achievable.
3. Commit your plan to paper.
4. Break the project in to measurable steps.
5. Record daily what you are doing to reach your goal.
6. Measure your progress against a predetermined plan.
7. Take corrective measures if your plan is not working.
8. Include others in your plan.
9. Reward yourself and others as you achieve your intermediate goals.
10. Be humble. Recognize that you are achieving your goal with the help of your creator


During all my working years I was a work-a-holic. My work was my passion… every hour of my workday was scheduled in 15-minute increments. I had a 3 year … a 5 year… and a 10 year plan of what I wanted to accomplish.

I learned to work with people… learned how to motivate and achieve goals with the help of people. My business was indeed my mistress. I was fortunate to find and marry early in life… and Audrey kept my life in focus. Without her guidance my stool would have had only 2 legs… work and religion.

No discussion on life management would be complete without the most important lesson I learned early in my marriage.

One evening while Audrey and I shared our appointments and schedules to avoid conflict… she asked for my Day-Timer and directed me to fix us drinks.

When I returned… she had filled in half of the open times with her name. I questioned why? Her simple answer was that if we can plan and schedule work and other appointments… why can’t we schedule time for ourselves.

No life is complete without a family commitment… without a family plan. Nothing can compare to seeing your children succeed in life. Nothing can compare to the love two people can share with each other.

I retired almost 20 years ago… shortly after my 60th birthday… some said I was too young… but I knew it was time for a change.

I am no longer a work-a-holic. I have time to smell the roses… recall all the good times in my life. Enjoy and learn to love my new wife. Change isn’t easy. I decided to be a follower rather than a leader.

I have to face and live than any problem I had to face during my years as a work-a-holic. You see… you can control work… you can learn to solve problems… when you are in control of your destiny there is a satisfaction that can be shared with many people. Success has many rewards.

Shortly after I retired my soul mate developed lung cancer. She was given 3 months to 3 years to live. I had not yet learned that there are some things that are beyond our control. I decided the doctors were wrong… we could lick this.

I had to learn a new lesson… some things are beyond our control. But with the help of Audrey and of my religious beliefs that our earthly life is but a chapter in our eternal life. I learned a new importance of time… it is how we enjoy it that’s even more important than how we use it. Audrey lived another 6 years… and these were the best years of my life. When you realize time is limited… you can make every minute count.

After Audrey left this earth… I devoted my time to hobbies that I never had time for… time with family and friends… and simply lost track of time. I didn’t feel lonely but I’m told I was. I was satisfied… I had lived a good life… rehashed my successes and recognition… and enjoyed endless hours simply doing nothing. I had no desire or intention to remarry… life had been too good and could not be repeated.

But my time alone was short-lived… before I realized what was happening I met and married again. I would have bet a million dollars that I would not remarry… nothing could compare … it just couldn’t happen. A good friend of mine later said he would have given me 10 to 1 odds. He reasoned that those who have lost a mate… and had a good marriage would want to regain what was lost… and he was right.

Nothing in life is easy… and we both had challenges to face. We came together with lots of baggage… my 3 children, 6 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren… my mother, 2 brothers, and 3 sisters. Hazel brought 4 children, 7 grandchildren, and 4 sisters. All needed attention and stroking. We had both developed our own lifestyles. But we soon discovered… if we spend enough time and effort … all things are possible. We soon learned to enjoy what we had in common and how to integrate our lives to find the happiness we both deserved.

All of these were within our control and we soon adjusted and learned how to please each other… life is a compromise… and anything is possible for those who want it to be possible. The last 2 years have been a real challenge. Hazel discovered she had breast cancer… again I was not in control. The prognosis was better… but we had decisions to make… and days of treatment that were far from pleasant. They almost kill you to cure you.

The treatments caused further complications… an eye operation … a hip replacement… and now open heart surgery. She is now the bionic woman and we hope that everything is now behind us.

We again both learned to have faith… to have understanding and to share the pain. At times life isn’t easy … and plans must be changed and adjustments need to be made.

Hazel and I celebrated our 10th Wedding Anniversary a few weeks ago. We do live many lives in our life journey. Do we grow in wisdom with the passing years? I don’t know… but I have learned that life is what you make it…. And the best years may be yet to come.

I have shared with you some of my life… and how the acronym TIME has helped me live it. My prayer for all of you is that as you reach the end of your life journey you will be able to look back on all the hours of time you have lived and find the same satisfaction of how you lived them as I have.

Your new theme is to study, think and determine the way you want to go. When Wachi first discussed the “way”… I had some difficulty fully understanding all it meant. I had difficulty seeing the relationship between chado “the way of tea” ? to budo” “the martial way”.

I bought over a dozen books on the classical arts to understand “Michi” . H.E. Davey helped me understand the relationship best when he said in one of his books: “Japan has succeeded in spiritualizing a number of the classical arts. By studying a Way in detail, we discuss vital principles that transcend the art, and relate more broadly to the art of living itself. These arts are about discipline and spirituality, about moving from the particular to the universal…to benefit people of any culture.”

This quote is from “Living the Japanese Arts and Ways … 45 Paths to Meditation and Beauty” by H.E. Davey. As I thought about it… I fondly recalled how, on many occasions, after I remarked about some subject… my friend, Wachi, said to members of the Time Society, lets us discuss these remarks in Japanese… and how I listened not understanding any word other than “Hi” … but knowing and feeling that what I said was being digested by my friends… and we both came to the same understanding.

As I read other books on Michi, I came to the conclusion that I was not qualified to speak on the subject even though I found the deeper meanings were similar to many of my own fundamental beliefs. We all need to develop our faith, our beliefs, and our values. These are the foundations on which to build and plan your life journey to get what you want out of life.

In the coming year I urge all of you to revisit your rich heritage… and find all the ways to live your life in harmony with nature, God, and all the people of the nations of the world.

Retirement has left me with very few responsibilities … and endless time available to pursue any interest I choose. It is amazing how we can fill time… I recall how I discovered that work fills the time that is available. Yes… how we use time determines our success in life… whether it is working to feed your family… your children’s education or providing for your retirement, the money you earn won’t determine your happiness… but it does come in handy when you want to buy something.

I have time to reflect on the life I have lived… the successes I have achieved as well as those things that I could have done better. I can truthfully say there are very few things I would change… some events we cannot control and true happiness comes when we realize that we must plan…but must be prepared to change our plan when events or circumstances dictate a change that is necessary.

There is a calmness in the “ways”… a sense of mind/ body harmony that is worth developing. I must confess that my life was built on achieving… getting what I wanted out of life… being successful… being recognized and important.

I had to constantly remind myself of the life of Jesus and how my basic religious beliefs taught to put my life and my plan in the proper perspective… to be humble … to recognize that others were more responsible for my success than I.