Despite writing the book The First 2 Hours, I reckon it’s the fourth two hours that can have the biggest impact on ability to work smarter and be productive.
In those last couple of hours in the day we have the advantage of an energetic second wind following the after lunch slump.
We can leverage the scarcity + clarity = urgency equation, by committing to a knock off time (say 5.30pm), and giving ourselves a just a few tasks we want to finish up.
And for me, the best use of this time, is for setting up the next day for success.
Here are 5 things you can do in the afternoon to get your next day off to a flying start:
- Scan your inbox or wrap up things that truly must be done by COB.
- Review your calendar for the next day so that you can do any meeting preparation required.
- Decide the top 3 things you want to get done the next day.
- Determine the one or two things you need to do in your first 2 hours where you have high levels of mental alertness.
- Finally, before bed, decide what you are wearing and eating the next day so you are not suffering from decision fatigue before the workday even starts.
These small things that don’t need a lot of energy or time, can ensure you set yourself up for the best possible start to your day.
Trust me. Your future self will thank you.