The Power of The 25th Hour or How It Can Change Your Life
Start Tracking Your Time Today
Time is static.
How many times have you heard someone say: “We all have 24 hours in a day.”
And it’s true.
But it’s how we use those 24 hours that counts.
I came across an article on the Huffington Post by Steve Eakin called: The 25th Hour.
I know I said there were only 24 hours in a day but stay with me…
The 25th Hour is all about using that one hour of free time that we all have each day.
“This is the hour where you can build your app. This 25th hour is where you can launch and scale your startup. This is where you go from side-hustler to CEO.”
Think about it…
- It might be first thing in the morning.
- It might be on your daily commute to work on the train.
- It might be in the evening when you’ve put the kids to bed.
One hour isn’t much
Don’t be fooled into thinking that one hour won’t get you anywhere.
When you add up all the ‘one hours’ you’ll soon have plenty of time.
If you devote one hour a day, six days a week to your goal then you soon have:
- 6 hours a week
- 24 hours a month
- 312 hours a year
That’s a lot of time.
And if you put it to good use then it can be incredibly powerful.
Don’t believe me?
How about a few stories and strategies to illustrate how people have managed their time and energy to achieve success.
Three Success Stories
#1 John Grisham
The story of John Grisham is an inspiration to us all.
Grisham was consumed with an idea, and he was disciplined in his efforts to write his first book. It took him 3 years to complete his novel – “A Time To Kill.”
In an interview with USA Today he said:
When I started writing in the fall of ’84, I had no idea what I was doing, but I was motivated for all of the right reasons.
Grisham trained as a lawyer, but he didn’t like the job.
He wanted to be a writer. He didn’t have any training or qualifications to be a writer. He just knew that he wanted to be a writer.
So he set himself a goal:
To write a page every day.
In an interview with the San Francisco Journal, he said:
I had these little rituals that were silly and brutal but very important.
For Grisham, that meant getting up at 5 am every day and reaching his office by 5:30 am. He had to be there at that time of day before the regular job started ready to start writing his first word.
He used the power of the 25th hour.
Even though he is now an international bestselling author, he still maintains his writing habits.
He told in an interview:
The books are written from August to November, from 6 a.m. to noon, five days a week. Old habits die hard…
Of course, it’s not just, John Grisham who has formed good habits to become successful.
#2 Jerry Seinfeld
Jerry Seinfeld, one of the most successful comedians of all-time, used a powerful productivity method he called Don’t Break The Chain.
There’s a story on Lifehacker recounted by Brad Isaac, once an aspiring comic, but now a software developer.
Isaac shares what happened when he encountered Jerry Seinfeld backstage at a comedy club and asked for some tips and advice.
He said the way to be a better comic was to create better jokes and the way to create better jokes was to write every day.
He told me to get a big wall calendar that has a whole year on one page and hang it on a prominent wall. The next step was to get a big red magic marker. He said for each day that I do my task of writing, I get to put a big red X over that day.
After a few days, you’ll have a chain. Just keep at it and the chain will grow longer every day. You’ll like seeing that chain, especially when you get a few weeks under your belt. Your only job is to not break the chain.
“Don’t break the chain,” he said again for emphasis.
When you break it down, it’s a simple strategy.
But it’s also very powerful.
Because it is visual.
Looking at a wall calendar and seeing those big red X’s building a chain is sure to drive you forward.
Putting in the small steps each day builds success.
If you set unrealistic goals, then you will fail.
Choose a task that is simple enough to be sustainable. But is also meaningful.
As James Clear explains:
Researching good jokes each day is simple, but you’re never going to write a joke by merely researching. That’s why the process of writing is a better choice. Writing can actually produce a meaningful result, even when it’s done in small doses.
#3 My Story
I’ll end with my own story.
I was working in a respectable job, earning decent money.
But I wasn’t satisfied.
Over time I became more resentful of pouring my heart and soul into my job, only for others to benefit.
Often my time and energy would go unrecognised. And in the end that becomes soul-destroying.
In my head, I knew that I needed to get out of the corporate workplace.
- I wanted to enjoy the freedom of freelancing.
- I wanted to work online so that I could enjoy location independence.
But I couldn’t simply quit my day job.
So, instead, I dedicated a couple of hours each evening to writing.
Researching and writing were new to me, but I knew I needed to practice if I was going to be successful online.
I had to use the 25th hour
Sure I could have slumped in front of the TV.
And many evenings I felt like doing that.
But I was motivated to persevere with my writing.
The trash on TV didn’t matter. The freedom of freelancing did.
Don’t wait, the time will never be just right.” ~ Napoleon Hill
Eventually, I took the plunge and left my corporate day job. The freedom is unbelievable.
There isn’t a day when I wish to be back.
Four Success Factors
#1 Remain Consistent and Persistent
In the stories we’ve looked at, one thing is clear:
You need to be both consistent and persistent.
Patience and persistence are the providers of progress.” ~ Tim Fargo
#2 Healthy Habits
Successful people all have healthy habits.
They work hard to achieve success and keep chipping away at their end goal.
Here are four more healthy habits to consider:
- Eat foods that will make you happy.
- Exercise daily – it makes us happier.
- Mix with people who lift you up. (And avoid the ones who bring you down).
- Kill negative thoughts instantly. Replace them immediately with something positive
#3 Stay Motivated
Developing some healthy habits won’t be enough.
You need to be motivated to reach your end goal.
What motivates you?
- Perhaps it’s money?
- Perhaps you want a better work/life balance?
Do what you love and the money will follow. ~ Marsha Sinetar
For me, it was to escape to the constraints of my corporate job.
For John Grisham, it was to be a successful author.
#4 Focus on One Thing
When you’re motivated to achieve your dreams it can be very easy to get distracted.
This is bad for you.
Remember to focus on The One Thing.
You only have one or two hours free time each day.
You need to maximize your 25th hour.
Grisham used his 25th hour to write.
He didn’t read. He didn’t play with the kids. He didn’t watch TV. He wrote.
To do two things at once is to do neither.” ~ Publilius Syrus
When you focus on one thing at a time you’ll achieve your goal.
How are you going to make the most of your life?
Are you going to be constrained by the mantra that there are only 24 hours in a day?
Or are you going to embrace the power of the 25th hour and change your life?
If you dedicate a little of your time to achieving your goal every single day, then you will be successful.Start Tracking Your Time Today