Rusty Shelton lives in Lake Travis with his wife, Paige, and three kids, Luke, Brady & Sadie. He’s an author, speaker and entrepreneur that is passionate about empowering success in others. He is also the QB on what he claims is Lake Travis’ top “old man” flag football team in the Hill Country Indoor league. Learn more at

Interview with Rusty:

  1. Do you have a daily practice or routine to help you focus, stay centered, and live meaningfully throughout the day?

For whatever reason, I have never been much of a daily routine guy. I’ve tried devotionals, planners, and other mechanisms, but I just can’t get myself to stick with it day in day out. What does work for me is a yearly routine that I review every morning to guide my actions for that day. In December, I create a vision sheet for the year ahead with goals and areas of focus broken down into four quadrants:

  • Personal
  • Business
  • Finance
  • Relationships

Each year I also select one word to guide the year ahead. I tape that vision sheet to my bathroom mirror and review it every single morning I’m at home. Here’s a look at my 2020 vision board (created pre-COVID):

This also has some acronyms that drive certain things for me that may not make sense to others but it’s the foundation of each year for me. There are also things on this vision board that I may have to change mid-year based on what’s coming at me but it generally stays pretty intact. Also – for good luck I always create my vision board using a touch card from my church, The Church @ Highland Park, because that’s how I created the first one ten years and this past decade has been a great blessing on so many fronts.

I should also say that I am very routine-oriented in my travels (pretty much same trips each year – to my wife’s chagrin =) and week to week activities, so there is some consistency in that stuff.

  1. How long have you utilized a daily practice?

I started doing the yearly planning alongside the launch of Shelton Interactive (my first personal business venture in 2010 ) as a way to be intentional about where I was spending my time.

  1. Do you have an ideal time and place for your routine?

The bathroom mirror each morning as I’m getting dressed.

  1. What are the elements of your routine (e.g., prayer, silence, being still, Bible or other reading, meditation, reflection)?

One of my big goals for this year (as you saw on that vision board) is meditating more routinely. It’s tough for me to sit and be quiet for long periods of time (anything over 3 min for me) because I lean more to the extrovert side of things, but I’m hoping to get better in this area.

  1. During each day, do you have “mini” versions of a practice or reminder techniques when the day goes wrong or you get distracted to help you re-focus?

One of my favorite books is called The One Thing, by Gary Keller & Jay Papasan.  The central question in that book is one that I try to ask myself related to any challenge I’m faced with:

“What is the one thing so that by doing it everything else is either easier or unnecessary?”

In other words, what is the one thing that provides the highest leverage or biggest impact on the challenge I’m facing?  I then try to focus my energy primarily on that and find it helps me simplify problem-solving by working smarter in every area of my life.

  1. Do you periodically “audit” your daily routine for its effectiveness and make changes to it?

I am part of Entrepreneurs’ Organization, which is a networking group for entrepreneurs (some call it a therapy group =). Within EO I’m part of a smaller Forum of 8 other business owners.  This smaller group provides a confidential environment to share things that are working, along with those that aren’t, and I use them as a source of new ideas.

  1. In addition to a daily routine, do you have more extended seasonal routines or personal retreats (such as during Advent, Lent, the New Year)? 

I am not in a season of life that allows for a personal retreat, but I do think that can be a great way to center yourself and make sure you’re on the right track. There’s a couple we are friends with that does a yearly retreat together to plan for the coming year and ensure they are on the same page with areas of focus.  I hope to start something like that with my wife, Paige, soon.

Walt’s Comments:

Rusty is my son and close friend.  He is a very talented business person and entrepreneur.  More importantly, Rusty has an exceptional character and excels in how he treats people.  Although he is very busy with his ventures, frequent speaking engagements, writing (two books published so far), and other work, Rusty prioritizes time and commitments to his family and friends.  His annual and developing approaches to routines and other activities for intentionality in qualitative living are unique and informative.