You might find it shocking to know that Jeff Bezos doesn’t start his workday until 10 a.m. That’s right, the world’s first person ever to be worth $200 billion, doesn’t schedule anything Amazon-related until two hours before noon.
Like most people, the Amazon CEO relishes his morning routine.
Inc recently reported the findings from Bezos’s new book, “Invent and Wander: The Collected Writings of Jeff Bezos,” which released in November by the Harvard Business Review Press.
The collection features insight of the mind of Bezos and how he operates by exploring topics like why company culture is important to what the COVID-19 pandemic has taught our generation, but it also offers a glimpse at how Bezos spends his morning which is centered around creating time for himself.
“I like to putter in the morning,” Bezos writes. “I get up early. I go to bed early. I like to read the newspaper. I like to have coffee. I like to have breakfast with my kids before they go to school. So my puttering time is very important to me. That’s why I set my first meeting for ten o’clock.”
There’s a few things to breakdown from his morning routine. First, let’s start with “puttering.”
By definition, puttering means to occupy oneself in a “desultory but pleasant manner” geared toward accomplishing a small number of tasks and not concentrating on anything particular.
CNBC reported Bezos sets the time aside in order to “rest and recharge,” which helps him make big-time decisions before getting into work. Bezos is strategic about how he spends his morning hours because it allows him to mentally prepare for the day of work.
“That’s why I set my first meeting for ten o’clock. I like to do my high-IQ meetings before lunch, because by 5 p.m., I’m like, I can’t think more about this issue today. Let’s try this again tomorrow at 10 a.m.”
Eight hours of sleep
The average American should aim for seven to eight hours of sleep daily, according to health professionals. Not getting enough sleep can have a number of side effects that affect personal well-being to even your career.
Like any professional dedicated to their job, Bezos prioritizes sleep not only because it makes him better, but it can have a better impact on people around him.
″[I] need eight hours. I think better. I have more energy. My mood is better,” Bezos writes in his book, via CNBC’s Make It.
In an interview with Thrive Global, Bezos told the outlet that eight hours of sleep makes a big difference for him because it’s the right amount that makes him feel “energized and excited.” While some might short their sleep in an effort to be more productive on any day, Bezos said that that mindset might not be a successful one because quality is always better than quantity.
“Making a small number of key decisions well is more important than making a large number of decisions,” he said in 2016. “If you shortchange your sleep, you might get a couple of extra “productive” hours, but that productivity might be an illusion. When you’re talking about decisions and interactions, quality is usually more important than quantity.”
He added: “In fact, if I’m happy at work, I’m better at home — a better husband and better father. And if I’m happy at home, I come into work more energized — a better employee and a better colleague.”
Bezos said that he doesn’t pay as much attention to sleep when traveling in different time zones, but he’s very focused on getting eight hours.