What’s easy to forget is that after 6 PM, we are in our golden hours. It’s the one time of the day when we can switch off and escape the phone.
If you’re smart about it, after 6 PM can become one of the greatest periods of your life and help you get 1% better each day. Try these ideas.
Work on one thing the world wants you to forget
Jann Mardenborough pissed off his dad.
After 6 PM he got addicted to a PlayStation game called “Gran Turismo.” For those who don’t know the game, it’s a life-like car racing simulator.
You get inside the cars you could never afford and race on tracks that are closed to the public. Jann’s dad didn’t want his son to play video games.
But Jann was obsessed.
Each day he’d play. Then one day he came across a Gran Turismo competition. The winner got prize money and, even better, the chance to race a real car in a big-name competition.
It wasn’t the day of racing that appealed to him. What he saw was the chance to go from being a gamer to a real race driver.
Jann became obsessed because he could see the one opportunity his dad and the world wanted him to forget. He wasn’t going to miss out.
He used the dark hours to practice like crazy, and entered the race. He won and it led him to the dream racing car driver career he’d always wanted.
Each of us is like Jann.
We have hopes and dreams. We have a goal outside of our jobs that we seek to achieve but don’t know how. Or we haven’t spent enough hours on it to reach mastery.
One of the smartest things you can do after 6 PM is work on your side hustle. Work on the thing you’d rather be doing while at your job. Make some progress.
Even if you only work on it from 6 PM until 7 PM you’re still making progress. In a year you will have racked up hundreds of hours and be further ahead than the dreamer. Or the procrastinator who just reads more books or does more Harvard courses waiting to be ready to start.
Write something, anything
I spoke to a young woman yesterday.
She wrote a book. After talking to me she realized that without an audience no one would read it. She was about to burn that damn book.
But then she had an aha moment. Selling the book may be useless, but what writing the book did was get out all of the ideas in her brain and put them somewhere.
It forced her to think.
Even better, it helped her join the dots between all the ideas and stories in her life. The point is this: everyone should be writing every day. Writing is how you experience some small level of creativity.
This is crucial in a world where the average job contains zero creativity. I recommend whatever you write is published in public, that way, others can benefit from what you’re learning.
Writing is secret networking.
The people you meet eventually help you build your empire.
Spend time with these pain in the ass strangers
Modern life helps train us to live in the metaverse.
So many people work late. And they miss the most important meal of the day, dinner, and don’t see their families.
Or if they are at home for dinner they’re stuck on a work Zoom call or zoned out looking at their phone at the dinner table instead of the faces of their loved ones.
I’ll point the bazooka at myself first. “I’m guilty your honor.”
I’ve slowly changed. No phones at the dinner table. Now, how does looking at your family help your goals? Well, we need reasons to take action, risk it all, and be uncomfortable.
Seeing your family after 6 PM reminds you of why you do what you do. That daily realization bleeds into everything you do.
Put the donuts away
I used to binge on 7-Eleven treats after 7 PM the way a fat kid loves to each chocolate cake and drink slurpees.
I put on loads of weight and would go to bed with a carb hangover. By accident, I read a book on how to be healthier. It taught me to stop eating after dinner — that way I don’t go to bed with a full stomach.
The benefit is that your body gets to fast for longer without food, so when you wake up your mind AND stomach have had a rest. I find I wake up with more energy if I’ve prolonged my evening fast.
Takeaway: no healthy food enters our stomachs after dinner.
Join the hallelujah chorus and sing kumbaya
My grandma is probably rolling in her grave right now.
I didn’t join the church and marry a good virgin girl like she’d hoped. All those Sundays spent with her at church made me immune to any kind of god. I did become a little spiritual in the Allan Watts sense, though.
What I did get from all her bible bashings was a gratitude practice. She taught me to be thankful for what I DO have so I don’t become an ungrateful little son of a gun.
That has stuck with me. Before bed each night I tell my wife one thing I’m grateful she has done. And I try to think of simple things I’m grateful for, like owning my own home.
There are too many entitled folks who think the world owes them endless free paychecks. Instead…
Write down three things you’re grateful for before bed each night.
Start tomorrow, tonight
Let’s finish here.
I always used to wake up in a sweat. I’d have to try and remember what I needed to do that day and what was most important. Half the time human evolution and ice cream would get in the way.
A few years back I started planning my tomorrows at night. Now I review my calendar for the following day before bed so I’m clear what time I need to wake up. I also review the evil to-do list.
I try to obsessively cut items off my to-do list.
Then once I have the final must-have items I try to prioritize one thing, yes one thing, to do the next day. I make it so if all I do is achieve that one goal for the day, and nothing else, then the whole day feels like a win.
Plan tomorrow so you can waste less time trying to figure out what must be done. That hack alone will help you become 1% better each day.
After 6 PM is when greatness happens.