Interview with Dr. Fred Ray Lybrand on getting rid of your “To-Do” list

RayDr. Fred Ray Lybrand is the author of “The One Success Habit: You Can’t Do Without. I recently had a chance to interview him about his book and getting rid of our “To-Do” list. Below is a transcript of our conversation…


1. What is your book about?

The One Success Habit You Can’t Live Without is a way to finally discover the simple key to side-stepping the frustrating daily efforts that only bring discouragement and defeat. It is not like a typical time-management book, it is filled with personal stories that bring clarity and perspective. I try to define a destination, help readers set goals the right way, light a “motivational fire” in their hearts, understand how to make habits their “servants,” and remove a serious stumbling block. Only after covering these key, foundational insights can we really look at the vital “one habit”-taking the everyday “to-do” list to a level far beyond anything most have ever conceived. I hope to show how to painlessly make the process a natural, trustworthy part of life-and more importantly, how to allow it to transform the daily agenda.

2. You talk about replacing your ToDo List with something better that will make a difference…How do we do that? And, why would we do that? Don’t we need to get done the things on our “ToDo” list or else they wouldn’t be on our “ToDo” list?

Good questions! It is really a new way to think about how to get things done. It is about habits. The book includes a four-part appendix, filled with hands-on, practical helps for making the most of your schedule and long-term goals, such as creating a “May-Do Catalog” and “Master List System” and establishing special “Edison” days to deliver major breakthroughs in organizational and project focus.

3. How do we balance getting our “ToDo” list done with still taking time for ourself and time to enjoy the day?

Well, actually “To-Do” lists help create the problem of not being ‘balanced’ (and being overwhelmed). Underneath all of this is a different kind of question, “Why are we doing so many things we don’t enjoy? Why aren’t we learning to enjoy them, or
enjoying seeing them completed?

4. What advice would you give to someone who feels overwhelmed with their ToDo List.

Get rid of it. To-Do Lists are a way to feel overwhelmed…they never end and we fill hopelessly committed to do them all! Replace it with a Will-Do List as we explain in the book. Specifically, we need 3 Lists:

1. A Master May-Do Listindex
2. A Weekly May-Do List
3. A Daily Will-Do List

5. What makes you want to help people in this way?

Hmm…I’ve never quite figured out why I exactly want to help people, but I assume it is something God put in my heart. In particular, with getting things done…I just know the great struggle of having a mind that is constantly dis-tractable… in this way I “feel your pain.” So, finding relief is worth sharing!

6. Who do you follow or read to be inspired?

Spiritually, I am very fond of the writings of The Apostle Paul, C.H. Spurgeon, and Miles Stanford. Practically, would say Robert Fritz, Schopenhauer Jay Abraham, and Sam Carpenter.

7. What motivates you towards success each day?

I’m motivated by seeing life as a game of puzzles where I’m always saying to myself, “I bet I can figure this one out.”

For more information about Dr. Fred Ray Lybrand and his book, please visit