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The surprising thing Jeff Bezos does first thing in the morning

Images: Getty
Images: Getty

If you use the alarm on your iPhone to wake up you might know the feeling.

For me, it’s a fight or flight response and it’s triggered not only by my 6:40am alarm but by any iPhone with the same ringtone.

But, Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos wouldn’t know that feeling. He wakes up naturally every morning after eight hours sleep.

Sheer luxury.

And apparently it’s amazing for your health.

The modern world moves fast but one of the consequences of waking up too early is something called sleep inertia. It’s the groggy feeling of being half awake, half asleep. The more abrupt the awakening, the tougher the inertia.


One Harvard Medical School study found this inertia can take two to four hours to recover from.

Showering, eating breakfast and turning on all the lights won’t do much to help this.

Another study by psychologist Marc Wittman and chronobiology professor, Till Roenneberg found a lot of us suffer from “social jetlag”.

Our natural body clocks and social expectations don’t quite match up, meaning we’re out of step for a lot of the day. Concerningly, these can lead to greater caffeine, alcohol and tobacco use.

There are also strong links between poor sleep and obesity

So, adopting Bezos routine could save your health.

How does Bezos compare?

Bezos’ routine is at odds with a lot of other CEOs seemingly impossible morning routines.

Tesla’s Elon Musk wakes up after six hours sleep, answers “critical emails” and skips breakfast because he’s just too busy.

In a 2010 interview, Musk said entrepreneurs need to be “extremely tenacious” and “work like hell”. He said they should be aiming for 100-hour working weeks.

“If other people are putting in 40 hour workweeks and you’re putting in 100 hour workweeks, then even if you’re doing the same thing … you will achieve in four months what it takes them a year to achieve,” he said.

Remember, this guy builds robots for a living.

Barack Obama used to start his days at the White House two hours before the first event in his diary, which often meant waking before 5 am. Amazingly, he didn’t drink coffee.

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg was also an early riser, often arriving at work by 7am.

It’s all very admirable but not the only way.

The late Apple founder, Steve Jobs had a more philosophical approach. He would wake up, look in the mirror and ask himself “If today was the last day of my life, would I be happy with what I’m about to do today?”

And, Oprah Winfrey starts her day with a restorative 20 minutes of meditation.

It comes down to finding out what works for you. If Jeff Bezos wakes up without an alarm, maybe you can too.

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