2 Feb 2022

Morning Habits of Successful Entrepreneurs

How Successful Entrepreneurs Do Mornings

Much has changed in the entrepreneurial landscape over the last five years. For one thing, founders are looking for balance and lifestyle hacks to optimise their lives, and businesses. What lifestyle choices do top CEOs make to ensure they are able to perform at optimal levels and deliver for their companies? Read on to learn about the morning routines of some of today’s most inspiring leaders.


Early Bird catches the Worm

When it comes to the time that CEOs wake up, not much has changed in the last 20 years. With billionaires from Warren Buffet to Jeff Bezos all waking up no later than 6 am, the early bird still seems to get the worm, regardless of industry or age. Extreme cases include Apple’s CEO Tim Cook who starts emailing his team at 3.45 am, while Ellevest CEO and cofounder Sallie Krawcheck wakes up at 4 a.m. for creative thinking time.

But what a new generation of entrepreneurs is doing with all that daylight is changing.


Meditation: Looking Inwards

The power of meditation is increasingly seen as integral to CEO success. Everyone from Bridgewater’s Founder Ray Dalio, media billionaire Oprah, and Square’s Founder Jack Dorsey swear by meditation as a game-changer for business and life. Dalio practices a technique called Transcendental Meditation, where a mantra is silently repeated in your head, for 20 minutes, twice per day.

Of his practice, Dalio says:

Transcendental Meditation has probably been the single most important reason for whatever success I’ve had.

News – Staying in the Loop

While meditation and self-analysis have been important aspects of successful business leaders’ mornings in the past, today’s CEOs also begin their days by looking out to the world and reviewing news that may impact their business decisions. Staying on brand, the first thing Mark Zuckerberg does, once he wakes up, checks his Facebook, Messenger, and WhatsApp to find out what’s going on. Other tech titans, including Robinhood Co-CEO Baiju Bhatt, go to Twitter for world news. Understanding how their businesses fit in current affairs and can respond to news events is crucial. 


Run Forrest, Run!

Almost all leaders advocate for exercising first thing. Whether it’s working out at home, going for a run, or to the gym, most successful figures embed movement in their routine. Self-made billionaire Whitney Wolfe Herd, Founder and CEO of Bumble tries to squeeze in a workout and avoids using her phone when she wakes up saying, “I have a yoga mat and a huge bottle of water next to my bed so when I get up, I drink that and then try to stretch and do some form of a morning workout. I do my best to avoid the direct-to-phone dive.”

Of course, there is always an exception—after waking up at 7 am Elon Musk gets straight to business, diving into his emails before even showering.


Health is Wealth

Wim Hof breathing, ice baths and cryotherapy are all techniques used by some CEOs like Jack Dorsey to optimise performance. Many even skip breakfast for lack of time – or because they’re following a new intermittent fasting regime.  


Plan Meticulously – Being Prepared, Not Surprised

Despite many founders eagerness to get down to work ASAP, they take the time to be intentional about it. Elon Musk precisely schedules his activities in 5-minute blocks, and others reflect on their overall goals and adapt their activities accordingly. CEO of Coinbase, Brian Armstrong fills in The Five-Minute Journal before getting underway with business.