Two lists that I ALWAYS include in my weekly review and planning process are: 1.) my “Never” or “Absolute No” List, and 2.) my “Always” or “100% Commitment” List. These are two lists of promises I’ve made to myself that are in total alignment with my beliefs, personal vision, work, personal goals and objectives. Reviewing these two lists on a weekly basis flexes my awareness muscle and helps keep me conscious of these important promises.


I borrowed the idea for my “Never” list from one of my favorite authors and speakers, Cheryl Richardson, who offers the idea of “The Absolute No List” in her wonderful book (which I highly recommend), The Art of Extreme Self-Care.

The idea of creating a “Never” list serves as a powerful reminder of those things you want to remove from your life because they no longer (or never did) align with who you are, who you want to be, and what’s important to you.

I find sharing examples helpful in explaining the concept of a “Never” list. In that regard, some of the items on my list and some that I’ve heard others express include the following:

I will never…

  • Participate in or be a party to gossip.
  • Throw away anything that can be recycled.
  • Hang around with people who consistently bring me down or drain me emotionally.
  • Multitask when I’m on the phone with a client, friend, or family member.
  • Feel like I need to finish any book in which I’ve lost interest.


In addition to my “Never” list, I also have an “Always” list, a list of things that I am 100% committed to doing… always. My “Always” list serves as a potent reminder of habits, actions and behaviors that I fully embrace and that are in complete alignment with who I am, who I want to be, and with those things that I cherish in my life.

As examples, I’ve seen the following on various “Always” lists:

I will always…

  • Spend the first part of my day, every day, in quiet time – reading, meditating, journaling, etc.
  • Perform a thorough weekly review and planning process first thing Monday morning (I’ve also seen this commitment on Fridays or the weekend).
  • Exercise AT LEAST three days each week.
  • Take a full two week vacation period each year, spending quality time with my family and leaving all work behind.
  • Send a thank you note daily, seeking an opportunity every day to express gratitude and appreciation.

How about you?

What would be on your “Never” list?

… or your “Always” list?

TIP: Begin with a short list… don’t go overboard with too many things. Something in the range of 10 +/- items on each list is what I tend to see in reviewing clients’ lists.

NEXT STEP: Formulate your lists, and then, most importantly, review them often – certainly during your weekly review time. Some of my clients also keep their lists in their field of vision – as a constant reminder, particularly when they’re initially beginning the process of abiding by the items on their lists.

Become the person you can be and want to be. Try these two powerful tools and watch the magic begin to happen in your life.