The Daily 5 – 5 – 3 Strategy


Want a simple strategy that is 100% guaranteed to make you happier, more effective in your work, and move you closer, daily, to your most important goals? Not only that – but by turning this strategy into a daily habit you’ll experience more emotional self-reliance, and less need to ever “vent” about really anything.  You’ll also feel a sense of active control over your life, more intrinsic fulfillment, and more flow.

Sound enticing yet? 

This strategy involves just a simple daily habit, a tiny little adjustment in behaviour, but once you start doing it, the compounding results are astounding.  I can’t take credit for the strategy – I first learned about it from the leadership writer Robin Sharma; however, I can vouch for its effectiveness as I have been actively engaging it for quite some time.

I call this strategy my “daily 5 – 5 – 3”, but Ive also heard it referred as the “Big 5, Daily 5, Nightly 3” strategy.

Here is the strategy:

First – get a journal (something I repeatedly advocate for).  Needs to be a pen and paper style.  Go back in time. Ditch the phone and tablet. You’ll thank me later.

Next – the “Big 5” – on the first page of the journal write the 5 most important goals that you have right now.  What “makes your heart sing”, what “makes you come alive”? Make sure these form part of the 5.  Make the goals very specific so that you know when you’ll achieve them.  It could be the 5 most important goals for the year, or the 5 things you MUST accomplish in your life.  Just make sure they are the most important things in your life – the 5 goals that you are most devoted to achieving.  The 5 things that are more meaningful to you personally than anything else.

Next – the “Daily 5” – on the top of every page going forward you are going to write the date (repeated every day on the next page).  Before the day starts you are going to set 5 “micro-goals” – one for each of your “Big 5” goals – that you are going to achieve that day.  Every one of your “daily goals” will take you closer, in some way, to your achieving your big five goals. So by the end of the day, assuming you completed your “Daily 5” you will have successfully accomplished 5 different goals, one for each of your “Big 5” goals.

Finally – the “Nightly 3” – at the end of the day (on the same page that you wrote the daily goals for that particular day) write down three things that you are grateful for that happened that day.  Simple and easy, but don’t go to bed until you have taken the time to record three things that happened that day that you are grateful for.

Here is what happens when you continuously engage this strategy (and by continuously I mean many days (100+) of consecutive execution):

  1. You start feeling really, really grateful, for just about everything in your life;
  2. You start embracing time as your most precious gift;
  3. You stop venting;
  4. You stop feeling sorry for yourself;
  5. You experience daily victories – this increases your self-confidence;
  6. Your motivation and drive to achieve your Big 5 dramatically increases;
  7. You start to believe that you can actually achieve your Big 5 because you experience yourself moving closer to your goals;
  8. You start to enjoy each day;
  9. You wake up excited for what you can accomplish that day;
  10. You go to bed fulfilled and satisfied with the day’s effort.

Try it, for at least 100 days in a row, and then drop me a line. I promise it will change your life.


2 comments on “The Daily 5 – 5 – 3 Strategy”
  1. Laura Mooney says:

    Something clicked when I read this post, Ryan. It’s exactly the motivation I need right now in my life. Last night I found an empty journal in my office and wrote down my first 5-5. I then made a plan for my entire day (for today), including when I would wake up, work out, eat, work, make supper for the fam, start my bedtime routine, and make my plan for the next day. What a fabulous morning I am enjoying; even found a few extra minutes to write this comment. I look forward to tonight’s “3” and planning out tomorrow’s “5”. I’ll drop you a line in 100 days.

    1. Awesome! It really does make a difference. Keep at it

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