Way to go, The Week, that's three for three. I really cannot endorse this list heartily enough, except the part about waking up early, geez, there's such an early riser cabal squatting in the self help aisle. I'm just going to write right here, so maybe it'll show up the next time somebody googles "does sleeping in make me a bad person," no, you don't have to wake up at 5:00 AM to live a happy, productive life. I mean, you can if that floats your boat; it's just not required. Eight works fine for me!
(Right, I don't have kids. Or really, a proper job. Or pets. Or even plants. I play roller derby at the age of forty-six. Me and the sweetie man live amazingly harmoniously crammed into 400 square feet, and he just fixed the toilet with a twist tie I think. These are choices I made, yes? And yes I am testing the tolerances of the words "successful" and YMMV, as I am wont to do.)
(The sharpest eyes will have noticed that almost all of my posts are timestamped in the seven o'clock hour, how does that happen, well, I think most of your longrunning blogs are written and scheduled ahead of time, for the timestamp I edit whatever's automatic to seven and AM, so my posts wait published for me for when I wake up.)
Anyway, here's how I do:
1) The morning ritual
I mean, right? Wake up, coffee in bed, words, tidy bedroom, tidy kitchen.
On work days it's wake up, shower, train and read redeye, breakfast and read feedly. (Take the train! Not like, train with weights.)
2) Important work first thing, with no distractions
For home days, I have cooking scheduled first thing after breakfast. Which first of all, food is important to me, and second, cooking takes energy; a thing that's important and takes energy gets the prime slot. Wow you might think, cooking instead of writing? Isn't writing more important than cooking? I'll tell you what, I thought about it. And, no. It's a very freeing thought, actually, when I'm cooking, that this is the most important thing to me. If it isn't for you, then you ...wouldn't. It's really that simple, except for the thing about you have to eat. I can't solve that for you, I like to cook so I haven't explored other options. Also cooking, for me, comes with this photographing and writing tail so sometimes that itch gets scratched when I'm waiting for something in the oven.
The distractions were more of a problem on work days. I forget how I stopped them.
3) Regroup when you slow down
So, write now? Nope! At this point, I am pooped. What I do now is eat, shower, and nap. I think the article says to revisit your hopes and dreams, you have fun with that! Totally not being ironic, I sincerely hope you have fun with whatever you do. I'm going to have fun revisiting the backs of my eyelids, or streaming something unchallenging on netflix.
[ETA @ 9:55 AM: I think this makes four for three, The Week is killing it!]
4) Meetings, calls and people stuff in the afternoon
Well, I don't do meeting or calls. Or people, haha. After my little power down, I do my little systems tasks, which are also important to me and don't take any energy at all, except paying bills does a little. Writing now? Nooope. You can see how writing is never getting done, and why not? Because it's not that important to me, rinse and repeat.
These third and fourth points aren't as salient for work, I have a task list that I chop at pretty evenly through the week. My job is pretty quiet, super grateful for that.
5) A relaxing evening
Haha, well, define relaxing. I personally like an evening to end up looking like I was beaten with sticks. YMMV! And working with clients is relaxing—if that isn't great, I don't know what great is.
And finally, sometimes, writing does happen. I mean, obviously, circumspicere, sometimes people ask me how I stick to blogging, and my secret is, I do it to relax, and the things that a lot of people do for relaxation, like spending time making small talk with other people, that... is not the most relaxing to me, so.