#239 "Shut-Down Complete!"

Your New End-of-the-Day Ritual

Continuing our theme of making sure we’re oscillating to optimize our energy, let’s focus on the end of our workday.

First: You DO have an end of your workday, right?

Seriously. (Laughing.)

Remember: We NEED to create waves if we want to perform at our best and avoid burnout, etc.


I’ve discovered that, by far, one of the best ways to make sure I recover properly is to embrace a brilliant idea from Cal Newport’s brilliant book, Deep Work.

Cal tells us that, at the end of our days, we need to be done. Like, completely done.

Here’s how he puts it: “At the end of the workday, shut down your consideration of work issues until the next morning —no after-dinner e-mail check, no mental replays of conversations, and no scheming about how you’ll handle an upcoming challenge; shut down work thinking completely. If you need more time, then extend your workday, but once you shut down, your mind must be left free.”

Echoing all the other making waves wisdom we’ve been discussing lately, he says: “When you work, work hard. When you’re done, be done.”

Cal has a little ritual. After doing his last run-through of important things at the end of the day, he turns off his computer and says to himself, “Shut-down complete!”

“Shut-down complete!”

I absolutely love that.

And, I find that I recover best and engage most deeply with my family when I COMPLETELY shut down all incoming stimulation digital-sunset style. No more digital stimulation at all. No news. No entertainment. Done.

How about YOU?

When’s your “Shut-down complete!” happening tonight?

Make it a game.

And win.

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