We all have rhythms. Maybe you can’t do the Tango, but you do have rhythm. It is an energy rhythm that predictably runs through your day. Technically, it’s called the Ultradian Rhythm (I just call it my energy rhythm).
Here is how your rhythm can show up for you.
For most people (at least 80% of my audiences, based on my informal surveys), morning is their best time. In the morning most people have lots of energy, feel optimistic, and are raring to go. By mid-afternoon – not so.
The trick, I have learned, is to maximize those precious morning hours to get hard-grind work done. But, that’s not what most people do.
How to get maximum output in 90 minutes
My experience is that most people assume that they will “ramp up” to maximum performance as the day progresses. Their hope is that once they create a plan, check their email, chat with Joseph down the hall, and shuffle paper some magic will happen. Bad plan.
This is what I do instead.
Do the hardest 50% of your work in the first 90 minutes of the day.
Sound crazy? Stay with me here…
In this video I show you precisely how I make my morning the most important time of my day. In fact, this is the strategy I used to finish my book, launch my new events, open my office, and get fully booked year-after-year for speaking engagements. Yup, it works.
Here’s the math:
If you work eight hours, it really is about seven hours, after breaks (you do take breaks, don’t you?). My research suggests you have about one hour for meetings (including: Skype, conference calls, etc.), one and one-half to two hours for email, and one hour lost to distractions. That leaves about three and one-half hours for doing real work. So, based on this math, it is possible that one half of your productive work could be in the first 90 minutes of the day.
The steps, 1, 2, 3
The process looks like this:
- Plan the next day, before you leave work. You get the worry onto paper, start the day running.
- Have a goal for the fist 90 minutes. Number of calls, pages written, or decisions made – nothing beats a clear goal.
- Stick to your plan and enjoy the results.
Oh, and one more thing. Don’t chuck the baby if you fall off the wagon once in a while. Stuff happens, expect it, get going again, and move on. I think you’ll be surprised by what happens.