Do you have to rise early to be successful?

Early rising is a common habit found in many CEOs, presidents and other influential people. But do you have to run several kilometres, drink a detox juice and check your emails before 6am to become a high achiever? We asked some successful folk to reveal their morning routine.
Too early
Too early

DERMOT O'GORMAN, CEO, WWF AUSTRALIA

What's your morning routine? I wake up at 6.10am during the week. I like to go swimming three to four times a week for about an hour.

Do you ever press the alarm's snooze button? I keep my phone in another room, which forces me to get out of bed to turn it off.

What time are you at your desk? I normally start work before I get to my desk; I check emails at about 8am. As for getting to the office, it could be before 8am or after 9am depending on whether I have a breakfast meeting or somewhere to be.

How often do you check your email? Too often. But I do have a rule not to check emails during personal time, like evening meals.

RUSLAN KOGAN, CEO, KOGAN

What time do you wake up? It varies significantly and depends on what time I go to sleep. On average, I sleep about four or five hours a day.

What time are you at your desk? Always. My desk is very portable. It can take the form of a tablet, an ultrabook, a smartphone or a seat on a plane.

How often do you check your email? I check emails over 100 times a day. I often check emails in my sleep. Sometimes I even send emails in my sleep and then I have to translate them to my staff in the morning.

How do you feel? Happy. I love what I'm doing and couldn't imagine doing anything else.

KRISTIE BUCHANAN, CEO, REDBALLOON

What time do you get up? On a typical day I wake up between 8am and 8.30am, depending on what time I went to bed the night before - eight hours' sleep is imperative.

What time do you arrive at the office? Here at RedBalloon we have very flexible work hours, so I start any time between 9am and 9.30am.

How often do you check your email? The first thing I do after the alarm goes off is check my emails. During the work day, I check my emails at three set times: mid-morning, lunchtime and early afternoon. I delete my email account off my phone when I go on holidays to avoid temptation.

BRYAN WEST, DIRECTOR, FORTRESS LEARNING

What is your morning routine? I get up at about 5.30am and sit with my wife having two cups of coffee on the front verandah in the pre-dawn for about 45 minutes. The kids slowly emerge and join us.

What time do you start work? I take the kids to school about 8am. At 8.30am I attempt to meditate for 20 minutes. After that, I spend another 20 minutes reading or otherwise learning about something new. Then I start work.

DAVID PRIOR, FOUNDER, FIVE:AM ORGANIC YOGHURT

How and when does your morning start? I start each day with either yoga, meditation or a wee-hours surf, and I never let a healthy, delicious breakfast (yoghurt, naturally) go astray. The Five:am philosophy is that you get a unique view of the world at 5am - a sense of clarity rarely seen throughout the rest of the day.

DEAN RAMLER, CEO, MILAN DIRECT

What time do you get up? I start my day early - at the gym by 5.45am. Into the office by 7am, fresh and at my most productive.

MAUREEN POUND, MELBOURNE-BASED BUSINESS COACH

Do you have to get up early to be a high achiever? I feel very strongly that you don't have to get up early to be successful. I spend the morning with my kids, playing on the couch, having breakfast, getting showered and dressed and then getting them off to school and childcare. I am not in the office until 9.30am.

What time do you go to bed? I choose to do two to three hours of an evening after the children are in bed and I am a gun during that time.

- AAP

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