Perfect Timing: How to Make the Most of the Day
From when to send e-mail, sell something on ebay, or make a baby, find out how to best use your 24 hours each day.
8:30 a.m.: Decide Something
Researchers have found that we make our best decisions right after we wake up. Later, we suffer from “decision fatigue” and make the quicker or easier decision.
9:30 a.m.: Update Your Blog
Most Web surfers check their favorite sites before 10 a.m. If you want to maximize your blog’s traffic, be sure to post shortly after breakfast.
10 a.m.: Take an Aspirin
Mornings, specifically Monday mornings, are the most common time for both heart attacks and migraines. A preemptive aspirin could ward off pain or even save your life.
11 a.m.: Send an E-Mail
Analysis of more than 200 million e-mails found that people are most likely to read their mail shortly before their lunch break. Send one at 11 a.m. to be at the top of the pile.
1 p.m.: Watch a Funny YouTube Video
Researchers from Northeastern and Harvard, who studied 300 million tweets over three years, concluded that the national mood is at its lowest at 1 p.m. Why not chase away those early-afternoon blues with a video of a sneezing panda?
2 p.m.: Take a Power Nap
The post-lunch slump isn’t just a symptom of a full belly; at around 2 p.m., your body temperature starts to drop the same way it does at night. Australian researchers found that a ten-minute power nap is the most effective way to combat the mid-afternoon blahs.
4 p.m.: Tweet Something Witty
If you come up with a 140-character zinger first thing in the morning, save it. A study conducted by social-media scientist Dan Zarrella found that Twitter users are most likely to retweet others’ pithy comments between 3 p.m. and midnight, peaking between 4 and 5 p.m.
4:30 p.m.: Clean the House
It’s best to clean when your hand-eye coordination is highest, around 4 to 5 p.m.
5 p.m.: Get Some Exercise
Your body temperature is highest from 5 to 6 p.m. The heat increases your stamina and strength while decreasing your reaction time, so the added warmth makes your workouts more effective.
9 p.m.: Sell Something on eBay
According to eBay users, the best time to end an auction is 9 p.m. EST because people tend to surf the Web when they get home from work at night.
10 p.m.: Solve the World’s Problems
Difficult problems require creative thinking, and studies show that people do their most abstract thinking when they are tired. If you’re not a night owl, letting your mind wander when you’re worn-out might lead to a creative solution to a problem that seemed insurmountable at noon.
7 a.m.: Make a Baby!
If you want kids, your best bet is trying when you wake up—men’s sperm counts are significantly higher in the morning.