The morning routines of wealthy, successful business people often seem to involve lots of activity and very little sleep. They get up really early, exercise, meditate, answer emails, and then they’re off to work. (Or they just start working the minute they get up. Sleep never seems to be a priority.)

Richard Branson gets up at 5:00 a.m. every morning. Tim Cook (CEO of Apple Inc.) claims to get up at 3:45 a.m. And Elon Musk may not really sleep at all – it seems that he often pulls all-nighters and naps under his desk.

So do you have to be sleep-deprived in order to be successful? Luckily, it appears that the answer is “no.” Because Jeff Bezos (founder, chairman, and CEO of Amazon) is here to prove to us that you can be well-rested and still be one of the successful business people on the planet. According to a recent interview with Bezos, he does the following:

  • Goes to bed early, wakes up early, and sleeps eight hours a night. He says that he has more energy and makes better decisions when he’s well-rested.
  • Putters around in the morning. He takes it easy and doesn’t rush to get ready. He drinks his coffee, reads the newspaper, and has breakfast with his kids. No meetings are ever scheduled before 10:00 a.m. (He also doesn’t allow meetings to run late into the afternoon since he feels wiped out by 5:00 p.m.)

A variety of studies have also dispelled the notion that you need to “sleep less and work more” in order to be happy and successful. Research indicates that when people try to be productive at all times and move quickly from one task to the next, they often end up feeling stressed and unhappy. And when people multitask, it’s easy to go off on a tangent and lose sight of the bigger picture. So a multitasker might get some things done, but the most important tasks might be neglected or forgotten.

In addition, research indicates that our brains can really only focus on work for about four hours a day. And no matter when you get up in the morning, that number is not going to change. So if you get up at 4:00 a.m. and start working, that’s fine. But you’ll probably feel tired and unproductive by 8:00 a.m.

So in conclusion, be like Jeff Bezos. Get some sleep. Take the time to putter around in the morning, if that’s your style. Listen to your body and figure out a morning routine and a schedule that works for you. You’ll be calmer, happier, and more productive.


Stillman, J. (2018, October 22). Jeff Bezos’s morning routine is the opposite of most productivity advice. Maybe yours should be too. Inc. Retrieved from: