The power of habit is something the majority of us underestimate. In fact, there’s an entire book on this very subject. Which begs the ten-figure question – in terms of habit, what separates the self-made and the successful from us ordinary folk?
Here are five things some billionaire CEOs do every day of the week, all year round, before 8 AM.
Warren Buffet (Berkshire Hathaway): Light reading
Here at BH, we’ve never shied away from writing about the Oracle of Omaha. Nor have we ever shied away from touting the benefits of reading. So you can imagine the combination of the two is something we’d positively froth.
Buffet generally aims to consume roughly five-hundred pages of information every week, averaging around seventy pages a day. The philosophy behind this is to always go to bed smarter than when he woke up – and it’s one we should all adopt.
Buffet also believes this is the key to building intelligence, eventually becoming a “wellspring” of knowledge. One of two compounding factors that has led to the legendary investor’s success.
Bill Gates (Microsoft): Hop on the treadmill with a bit of TV
Mind, body, and spirit, as they say. How does the founder of Microsoft unify all three before his morning coffee? By hopping on the treadmill for an hour or so while he absorbs the daily broadcast on The Teaching Channel.
The more you learn about these titans of industry, the more you’ll find that successful individuals will always (always) find time to take care of themselves, in addition to being deeply immersed in a constant (constant) state of education. It’s quite zen, really. But approach the road ahead with the whole, “All I know is that I know nothing” mentality and it may pay off in spades.
Jack Ma (Alibaba): Tai Chi
First off, of course it is. Secondly, of course it is.
Beyond the cultural staple of Tai Chi in China – which is practised by every elderly person and my dad – it has to be noted; having a personal fortune of nearly US$40 billion in addition to running a company with a market cap more than ten times that has to be stressful. How does one counter said stress? Meditation and exercise. And where do the two meet? Tai Chi.
Tai Chi is an ancient, non-combative martial art which focuses on reaching the calm and internal equilibrium. With slow, fluid, and deliberate movements, it’s an exercise of focus. Fun fact, Ma brings his instructor along everywhere he goes – especially on business trips.
Sergey Brin (Google): Drink green tea
This one is probably the easiest to adopt.
Similar to Gates, Brin always engages in some morning exercise. What differentiates him from both Gates and everyone else who partakes in morning workouts is his green tea intake. According to the man himself, regular consumption of the stuff will protect him from Parkinson’s disease. I’m not too sure about that one, chief, but you do you…
Some research has shown that it may also protect you from cancer. Apparently. Again, don’t quote me on that. What I will say for sure is that it does help your metabolism and has a calming effect, while also waking you up in a more gentle fashion than that double-shot macchiato.
Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook): Wear the same t-shirt/start pretending to be human
The Ultimate Zucc doesn’t wake up before 8 AM – he wakes up precisely at 8 AM. Almost mechanical, as some would say…
Before Mark Zuckerberg launches human.exe to interface with us flesh and blood beings, he redirects his RAM exclusively to “the big decisions”. Which is why he wears the exact same thing every day – much like Einstein and Steve Jobs before him – thereby freeing up the mental capacity to focus on the really important things. Like what to report back to the alien overlords that sent him here.
All his tees are exactly the same, and I’d imagine the sneaker and jeans situation can’t be much different either. Believe it or not, this does save precious minutes and seconds. More time to stand in front of the mirror and practice a few, “Senator… w-we run ads.”