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10 Natural Laws of Successful Time and Life Management

4.08  ·  Rating Details ·  765 Ratings  ·  49 Reviews
Written for anyone who suffers from "time famine", this essential handbook provides simple, effective methods for successfully taking control of one's hours--and one's life. Smith shows how, by managing time better, anyone can lead a happier, more confident and fulfilled life.
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Published November 15th 2008 by Business Plus (first published January 1st 1994)
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Mar 15, 2012 Anne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone looking to find their focus
Recommended to Anne by: Hendrick's Automotive Saturn of Cerritos Management Team
Shelves: favorites
Before Covey, there was Smith, and as far as I have seen from Covey's books, Smith did it better. I appreciate Smith's humanity and personalization to the process of finding my priorities and goals and feel that Covey lost that in his effort to bring the idea to the masses.

Smith's book was an easy read, emotionally leading me through thoughts I would have otherwise avoided in my search for the final goals and priorities in my life. While I initially read this in the mid-90s, I have reread it at
If this book had been just the first half, I would have liked it *much* better. Hyrum Smith has some great ideas...unfortunately none of them have anything to do with communication. I loved the idea of writing out your values and planning your dailies based on those values. Also the idea that no two people will have the same values. I would like to do those exercises with my husband and then compare. It would give insight.

Then, he talked about how to get people to act in accordance with "better"
Dec 20, 2010 Natalie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I gave this book 4 stars even though I didn't LOVE all of the book. The insights that were good were really good enough for me to say the book is a worthwhile read. The beginning of the book talks a lot about how we have to be clear about our values before determining long range goals which we break down to short range goals and then to daily tasks. It isn't that much different of an idea from many other books but I guess maybe he presented it in a way that made me think differently. There was a ...more
Trudy Brasure
Oct 03, 2016 Trudy Brasure rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love the personal stories that elucidate the text. This book challenges you to find your core values and guides you toward learning how to spend your daily activities actually living those values. It's not rocket science, but finding and sticking to your core purposes in this fast-paced, information-packed world is tremendously challenging.
James Affleck
Apr 02, 2009 James Affleck rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone.
This book has helped me out a lot. I have become far more organized thanks to this textual treat. I've learned to plan my day and also realize that the way I choose to spend my time each and every day reflect on my values and what's most important to me so I should spend my time doing things that are most important in the long run. I recommend this book to anyone who's very unorganized.
Mar 11, 2013 Lucy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book gives excellent advice on how to plan your schedule and to-do list based on your core values and goals. I have put many of these things into practice, but have also felt mentally and spiritually exhausted from trying to be as disciplined as the author.
Joseph McBee
Apr 16, 2014 Joseph McBee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked up this book on the recommendation of a friend. He told me that the first half of the book was excellent, "but you can probably skip the second half". His assessment was right on target.

I got a lot out of the first half of the book, which covers values, goals, strategic planning and time management. This material is seminal in that I have seen Smith's ideas and best practices recycled and repeated by many others in the field of personal and professional development. However, as is alway
Jun 02, 2010 Cara rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: life
Still on introduction, which says "read this even if you don't read anything else!" but so far it's really boring, lots of blah blah blah about the guy's career and how he started his business. Don't care. Usually I'm a fan of case studies, but come on, pages and pages of your own boring history in the introduction? Hm, maybe this is why I usually skip introductions.


This turned out to be a really good book. Premise: your values should determine your long-range goals, which should determine yo
Sindhuja Anbazhagan
This book is one of the few books that have had a lasting effect on my life. It has been fantastic. Hyrum Smith provides a simple, step by step, method for discovering, and implementing the most important goals in your life (Family, Health, Business). His book gives good advice with five laws on managing time, and five more on managing life. With all 10 laws coming together to help you increase your own productivity and ultimately a peaceful life when you get time and work in alignment. It addre ...more
Oct 10, 2016 Rachel rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
A lot of this book is good information, but when Hyrum starts telling stories about how he was able to get the worst troublemakers in a high school on board with his belief window system, when I am almost 30 years out of high school and am calling bullshit on the belief window system, I just don't believe him. I'm not saying that he's a liar, but I think he is telling stories the way he wishes they went, not necessarily how they actually went. Skim it if you are interested, but there is nothing ...more
Jul 24, 2014 Shauna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is not the typical "find who you are" book. Hyrum W. Smith teaches why it is important to discover your core values, and then teaches you how to apply them in your life. As I've applied Smith's ideas to my life I have started to prioritize better, have successfully used some of his communication tools with my children, and am feeling a greater amount of peace in my life. I highly recommend this book.
Mar 17, 2012 Rob rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I have read this book several times and always get something out of it. Hyrum Smith offers great advise and practical methods for time management, goal setting, and prioritizing. While I have yet to consistently use these principals daily, the times I have used them have made and incredible difference in my life. There is a strange euphoria you get when you are in complete control of your time and life.
Feb 04, 2009 Travis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-help
I'm a big fan of Hyrum Smith and used to have a Franklin Planner. This book has many of his other stories, and I liked what he had to say about time and life (since life is built of time) and what you need to do to have your life in order. Sadly, I've now moved on past a Franklin Planner, but I still liked the book and the principles. They still influence how I plan my day, my goals, and my "To-Do" lists.
Dec 06, 2012 MelissaB rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-improvement
After reading 10 Natural Laws of Successful Time and Life Management countless times in the last 18 years, I can honestly say that it's the most influential secular book I have. It is certainly well loved and marked in many places. Thank you for making a difference in my life, Hyrum Smith. All the best to you.
Sep 01, 2008 Mary rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
My husband has thrust this book upon me. It sits in the bathroom but I must admit that what I've read so far seems to make sense. Since I'm not in any business I don't think of it in business terms and the business part is a little boring to me but the principles so far seem to make sense. I like my chaotic unorganized life though.
Eric Herr
I found Hyrum Smith's book to be full of valuable information. Much of it is fairly obvious when read but the methods Smith outlines to create priorities, organize schedules, and evaluate self-success are useful and allow one to prioritize multiple aspects in life. I quick read and valuable to anyone who is looking to gain some alignment is their personal and professional lives.
I love this introductory material.

The shadow by my finger cast
Divides the future from the past.
Behind its unreturning line,
The vanished hour, no longer thine,

Before it lies the unknown hour,
In darkness and beyond thine power,
One hour alone is in thine hands,
The now on which the shadow stands.

From a sundial at Wellesley College.
quoted p. viii
Eric Chen
Oct 06, 2014 Eric Chen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-improvement
This book gives many practical suggestions about time management. It not only gives suggestions on doing or planning things, it also discusses the driving force from inside of a highly efficient and successful person. I would say this book is both practical and inspiring.
Jun 29, 2009 Kerrin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hyrum Smith has a great way of understanding how to find out what your governing values are and then make sure everyday is working within those values and finding inner peace through that process. Great ideas about how to not let time robbers control your day. Really helpful.
Dec 15, 2009 Andrew rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
My sister Jenny is reading this book via a financial advisor/counselor's recommendation. As we are both struggling for purpose, she suggested I read it as well. I am. It seems to be specifically tailored to people with an office job, but I am trying to glean what benefits I may.
Dewey Norton
Jul 22, 2009 Dewey Norton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
At the time I read this, Franklin and Covey were separate companies. In many ways Smith in this book is talking about the same things that Covey deals with in First Things First. I find the two books highly complementary in providing better insights.
Feb 25, 2010 Lisa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love this book! He's kinda into Jesus and a lot of the suggestions are for people with corporate america, day jobs but the techniques are easily applied to any situation. We all need more time! It totally works - already feel so organized.
Jul 28, 2008 Gary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I liked this book! It was a good read. It was easy to follow and understand and more importantly, to implement!
Staci Corcoran
May 19, 2015 Staci Corcoran rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
(abridged Audible version)
Huh. awful lot of psychology in this. definitely interesting stuff, especially the bits on defining your values and then how to prioritize living by them! Good to know!
Leif Denti
It's an OK self-help slash life-management book but I've read better. Can't really recommend this one.
Lori Grant
A must-read book on time management which is a critical competency as you manage your career or startup.
Nov 28, 2012 Kathy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first part was basic time management -Franklin/Covey type information. The second part took the laws much deeper.
Chris Ruby
Mar 12, 2013 Chris Ruby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Chris by: Self
Talks about living and structuring your life according to your values and your principles. Must read.
Nogal irritant Amerikaans-popi toontje, maar wet 5 is nuttig.

Noot 16-11-2015: geen idéé meer wat wet 5 inhield. Hoe om te gaan met autoritaire bazen misschien? (Daar had ik toen last van.)
Gareth Jones
A really practical staple read - along with 7 habits - excellent for anyone who is going to be hit with major conflcit of roles and priorities - to have a system for dealing with pressure.
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Hyrum W. Smith is a distinguished author, speaker, and businessman. Hyrum was one of the original creators of the popular Franklin Day Planner. In 1983 he co-founded the Franklin Quest Company to produce the planner and train individuals and organizations in the time management principles on which the planner was based. In 1997 it became the Franklin Covey Company. Hyrum stepped down as Chairman & ...more
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