Tim Cook wakes at 3:45 a.m. most days. Maybe you should, too

The Hamilton Spectator - - BUSINESS - MATTHEW DIEBEL

Al­most ev­ery morn­ing at about 3:45 a.m. PT they be­gin to hap­pen. Tim Cook’s emails, that is.

Yes, hours be­fore most have even hit the snooze but­ton, Ap­ple’s CEO is fir­ing off mis­sives that will be in the in­boxes of em­ploy­ees and as­so­ciates when they stag­ger into work or pick up their phones from their bed­side ta­bles.

Cook isn’t the only one with itchy fin­gers in the early hours. Take Don­ald Trump. Most days at about 7 a.m. the Twit­ter-ob­sessed pres­i­dent is tap-tap­ping di­a­tribes. And Trump is of­ten tweet­ing on four or five hours of sleep.

What wak­ing up early gives early ris­ers, of course, is time, a hugely valu­able as­set. And un­in­ter­rupted time is even more pre­cious, es­pe­cially for those with lots to do.

“To be suc­cess­ful and achieve your goals you need to make time to fo­cus on your pri­or­i­ties,” said Lisa Zaslow, founder of Gotham Or­ga­niz­ers, a New York Ci­ty­based pro­fes­sional or­ga­niz­ing con­sul­tant.

“Start­ing the day early — on your own terms — means your pro­duc­tiv­ity won’t get hi­jacked, no mat­ter how many in­ter­rup­tions and un­fore­seen events oc­cur later on.”

For some, it’s not just time and lack of in­ter­rup­tions that is gar­nered by early hours, but also cre­ativ­ity. For in­stance, famed ar­chi­tect Frank Lloyd Wright would wake at about 4 a.m. and work for three or four hours, ac­cord­ing to Ma­son Cur­rey, au­thor of “Daily Rit­u­als: How Artists Work.”

Get­ting up early doesn’t have to mean get­ting less sleep, but for many, it does.

Pres­i­dent Trump, yep. And Mar­garet Thatcher — prime min­is­ter of the United King­dom from 1979 to 1990 — would stay up work­ing un­til past mid­night, and then would be up at 5 a.m. to lis­ten to “Farm­ing To­day,” a show for up-at-the-crack-of-dawn agri­cul­tural work­ers, be­fore head­ing to her of­fice, ac­cord­ing to the BBC.

Cook gets a few more hours than the Iron Lady — he typ­i­cally goes to bed at about 10:30 p.m. — but he is among many CEOs up and at ’em early. United King­dom­based re­tailer Home Arena re­leased data in 2015 that tells when some other top ex­ec­u­tives get up: AOL CEO Tim Armstrong (5 a.m.), Xerox’s Ur­sula Burns (5:15), Pep­sico’s In­dra Nooyi (4), Fiat Chrysler’s Ser­gio Mar­chionne (3:30), GM’s Mary Barra (at her desk by 6) and Star­bucks CEO Howard Schultz (also in the of­fice at 6).

Maybe you’ll think twice next time you reach for that snooze but­ton.

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