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7 Powerful Things Successful People Do At The End Of Each Day

7 Powerful Things Successful People Do At The End Of Each Day
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There are a lot of habits successful people follow, either naturally or through sheer discipline, that help make them successful. If you use the same tactics, you might be able to reap rewards similar to what they’ve achieved. Here are 7 powerful things successful people do at the end of every day.

1. They don’t have any big decisions left to make.

Decision fatigue is a real thing, and should be avoided at all costs. As you make more and more choices, your ability to make good decisions steadily deteriorates over the course of the day. It’s been proven several times over. For example, judges are known to make less favorable decisions towards the end of their shifts. Successful people know that if they wake up in the morning, their biggest decisions should be made before the end of the afternoon. Avoid making major purchases or other life-changing choices late in the day so that your decisions will more likely be the right ones.

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2. They cross every last item off their to-do lists.

Successful people tend to have some way of monitoring their success. One way to keep track of productivity is to keep a to-do list. That to-do list can be an app like Wunderlist or 2Do or simply plain old pen and paper. The successful people of the world are the types to have every single task checked off before they hit the hay. The key to accomplishing that, other than, of course, working hard, is being able to gauge how much you can get done in a given day. Leaning towards fewer tasks on your to-do list might be a safer bet, and if you get more done than what’s listed you’ll feel better about yourself. On the other hand, having a lot of tasks on your list might motivate you more. Do whatever’s most effective for you.

3. They wrap things up.

More than just with to-do lists, successful people have pretty much everything taken care of that can be taken care of before the day’s end. You should do the same. For example, don’t leave conversations hanging when they can be resolved. If things like that are wrapped up in a bow by the time you shut your eyes, you’ll have a smoother transition into the next day.

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4. They get organized for the next day.

Successful people complete their todays by preparing for their tomorrows. Make sure you know what the next day’s schedule is so that you don’t wake up to any unpleasant surprises.

5. They eat smart.

Successful people carefully consider their diet, especially when it comes to what they consume before they go to bed. The number one dietary productivity killer is caffeine late at night. Having a late night soda will cause you to sleep restlessly, stemming your potential for the next day. Also avoid having too much sugar, fried foods and alcohol to start off on a good foot.

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6. They wind down.

A lot of successful people work until the minute they go to bed, but the extremely successful usually recognize the importance of having at least a little downtime. Bill Gates reads every night before bed. Arianna Huffington unplugs from her technology. The CEO of Buffer takes a walk. Read more ways to wind down as recommended by successful people here. Relaxing activities like those are the best ways to jumpstart the next day.

7. They have a bedtime.

This is a hard thing to hear for many, but successful people often go to bed at the same time every night. An erratic sleep schedule means you won’t know when or where you’ll be most productive, giving you less control over the efficiency of your day. Pick a time to go to bed and a time to wake up and stick to them to be among the extremely successful.

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Featured photo credit: Simply CVR via flickr.com

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Matt OKeefe

Matt is a marketer and writer who shares about lifestyle and productivity tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on July 21, 2021

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to Make a Reminder Works for You

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

More on Building Habits

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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