Four Things Successful People Do Before Winding Down the Day

We’ve often heard about what successful people do to start the day like meditate, wake up 30 minutes earlier and avoid checking messages right away but winding down the day is equally important.

According to a piece on Business Insider, there are a few pointers we can learn from successful folks as to how they end their day on a high note.

1. Focus on the next day. Kenneth Chenault, CEO of American Express, writes down the top three things on his mind to accomplish the next day.

There’s a lot of weight in not only planning ahead but writing things down to make them more concrete. The piece indicates, “This helps him prioritize first thing the next morning.”

2. Get a jump-start! We’re not advocating sleep deprivation but if you’re a night owl and that’s your most productive time of the day, then go for it. As an example, author Michael Lewis (known for Liar’s Poker, Moneyball and The Blind Side, to name a few) used to write throughout the night.

He told author Robert Boynton:

“Left to my own devices, with no family, I’d start writing at 7 p.m. and stop at 4 a.m. That is the way I used to write. I liked to get ahead of everybody. I’d think to myself, ‘I’m starting tomorrow’s workday, tonight!’ Late nights are wonderfully tranquil. No phone calls, no interruptions. I like the feeling of knowing that nobody is trying to reach me.”

3. Block electronic devices. Arianna Huffington prefers “real books” instead. This means ditching that iPad, Kindle, laptop, mobile phone and other devices to simply unwind.

4. Reflect upon the day. Although it’s important to plan for the next day as noted above, Benjamin Franklin outlined a schedule in his autobiography to focus on “moral perfection.”

Essentially, he asked himself, “What good have I done today?” Other rituals as mentioned in the piece included putting things in their place along with “supper, music or diversion or conversation, and examination of the day.”