What did you do when the clocks went back? Did you simply have an extra hour in bed? What about using that extra hour to boost your business?
One of the great copywriters Gary Bencivenga used to get up an hour earlier than he needed to, in terms of ablutions, breakfast and so on. In that hour, he would do some work, but not routine tasks, he would spend the time doing the most productive thing he could. In his case, it was writing copy.
Let me say that I think there are few things more pleasurable in life than lying half asleep in a warm bed with an equally warm wife. So forcing myself out of that cocoon is not easy. But needs must when you run a business. Gary’s idea is that at the end of that hour you have started the day by ‘banking’ something. Whatever else happens in the day, all the phone calls, emails, meetings, news feeds and other distractions, you know you have achieved something solid. He called it his Golden Hour.
I try to get up at 6 instead of 7 and use the time to write copy for mailshots and websites. I chose to do this because I know that once I’m in the office, there’ll be all kinds of calls upon my time that will seem more urgent than writing a mailshot. Not only that, the interruptions make it so much harder to get the creative flow going.
There are two surprises. I’m not exactly a morning person- I don’t really feel like facing the day until I’ve had a coffee. So, I thought it would take an hour for me to wake up properly. Not at all. By the time I’m downstairs, my brain is fully awake. In fact it’s at its freshest. Secondly, I thought I would lose an hour at the end of the day. In fact, providing I’ve had six hours’ sleep, I’m no more tired in the evening than I would normally be.
You know you’re always saying there aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything you want to? Now you’ve had one extra hour, why not give yourself an extra hour the rest of the year?
This blog was written by Paul Lewis, owner of the marketing consultancy The Lewis Experience and online retailer Your Life Your Style, both based at Hampshire Workspace, and former Head of Marketing and Operations at The Mayflower Theatre. You can connect with him on Google+ and LinkedIn.
A version of this article appeared on the Daily Echo website.