[Review] Routine and morning habits of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs is an icon. There is no doubt that the man left a legacy, with today’s entrepreneurs still admiring the way he ran a business, the way he dressed and how he got ready in the morning.

Jobs’ morning routine has been recorded on various websites online, although I can’t say I can confirm exactly what the late American entrepreneur did each morning without fail.

Either way, though, the former Apple co-founder and CEO has always been described as meticulous and detail-oriented, so I guess he led a pretty structured life.

Given the continued relevance of Job and Apple in our society, it makes sense that Steve Jobs’ morning routine is one that people would want to try for themselves, myself included.

It probably won’t bring me success overnight (or even over a year), but I still wanted to have a bite of that apple that is Jobs’ morning ritual.

6:15 a.m.: Rise and Shine

Steve Jobs told TIME in 1999 that he was a “good morning person” and would wake up around six o’clock. I decided the “ish” would be 15 more minutes of sleep.

Although I was able to wake up around the target time of 6:15 am, I wouldn’t say I started being productive then. In fact, I ended up mindlessly browsing social media for a good ten minutes, which I don’t imagine Steve Jobs did.

06:25: Put on the uniform

Eventually I managed to remove the covers myself. Unlike most days, I didn’t have to think long to choose my outfit.

Typical Steve Jobs outfit / Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

Unfortunately, I am not in possession of a black Issey Miyake turtleneck, or any turtleneck for that matter. But that’s not the point of Steve Jobs’ outfit anyway.

Rather than the literal outfit, I wanted to capture the essence of him – the idea of ​​having a uniform and something you can reach for in the morning without wasting your time and brains.

So, I opted for blue jeans and a dark sweater that I had prepared the day before.

6:30 a.m. Morning Incantation

This is probably one of the most interesting things I’ve read about Jobs.

In a Stanford commencement speech in 2005, the entrepreneur reportedly said the following:

For 33 years, I’ve looked in the mirror every morning and wondered, “If today was the last day of my life, would I want to do what I’m about to do today?” And every time the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I have to change something.

So I decided to start my day with the same existential crisis. I looked in the mirror and asked, “If today was the last day of my life, would I want to do what I’m about to do today?”

My response was “Why not?”, especially considering what I was about to do today was live like Steve Jobs, which was definitely a change from my normal.

6:35 a.m.: first order of the day

Steve immediately cracks his fingers and gets to work in the early (or dark and early, even) morning.

Apparently he has a “pretty sophisticated setup” where he uses a T1 line that transmits all of his files, whether Apple or Pixar related, to his home office.

Did you know: A T1 line is a twisted copper wire that transfers voice and data from one location to another via digital signals.

TelNet around the world

I don’t need it because the technology is more advanced now and I take my laptop everywhere I go. (But good flex, Steve.)

I started by filing my emails and writing. It was quite therapeutic.

The outside world was still pretty quiet and I was just clicking away from the comfort of my home. It made me feel a little more productive than usual. As they say, the early bird catches the worm, and all that.

7:30 a.m.: A fruity breakfast

Jobs joined his family for breakfast in the morning before his children were sent to school. I have no children, but I live with my sister. However, she didn’t want to wake up just to have breakfast with me.

So I ate breakfast alone. Apparently Jobs was a fruitarian, but he started having more of a pescatarian diet due to his health later in life.

What was my breakfast

As the name suggests, fruitarians primarily eat fruits and possibly nuts and seeds. Jobs liked carrot juice, which I like too, but I didn’t have access to it. But what is so orange and juicy? Orange juice!

I also ate an apple, for obvious reasons.

Although I read that Jobs drinks coffee, I decided not to. I was surprised at how energized I was throughout the day without my daily caffeine fix. Maybe I don’t really need my morning coffee after all.

8:00 a.m.: Back to work

After laying down for a bit after breakfast, I went back to my laptop to finish some more work.

Steve Jobs said, “If I’m lucky, I’ll stay home and work for an hour because I can do a lot of things, but often I’ll have to come in.”

Excerpts from my morning

My working hours are 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., but I have to leave the house before 8:30 a.m. That’s because unlike Jobs, who bought a new car of the same model every six months to avoid getting a license plate, I commute by train. The trip takes about an hour.

9:30 a.m. Arrival at the office

Apparently, every Monday, Jobs and his executive team go over the whole thing and hold “marathon meetings.” It’s not in my field, so I skipped that.

Instead, I started my own work, which includes (but is not limited to) more email and writing.

end the day

At the end of the day, I surprisingly always felt light on my feet and ready to go. I was more energetic than expected.

But once I took the train home, I felt all the adrenaline rushing out of my body. I was beaten. I actually went to bed early because I wanted to continue this routine for the rest of the week.

I managed to keep up for the next two days, but I was too tired on Thursday so I decided to sleep.

The obvious problem here was that my time at the office lasts longer than Steve’s. Apparently he gets home and eats dinner around 5:30, but I stay in the office for at least an hour longer than that.

Having a long commute doesn’t help either. I’ve always hated the time we spend in transit, going from one place to another.

Details of Jobs’ life were also recorded in his biography written by Walter Isaacson / Image credit: Unsplash

Admittedly, I like my morning commute because it’s my own ritual. I usually listen to music or a podcast to start my day.

But it can get tiring, especially on days when the train is full and you have to maneuver your way around a corner and your neck starts to hurt from staring at your phone for too long.

As some netizens once said, we don’t have “Beyoncé” hours. And I don’t have Jobs’ work.

To explain, we might have the same hours in a day as a millionaire like Beyoncé, but it’s important to note that powerful individuals like her don’t have to spend time doing chores or running errands.

She probably has staff members to do her makeup, cook her food, drive her places, and manage her finances.

During this experience, I ended up being more productive because the number of hours I spent working was longer than ever. My days started earlier than usual, but the time I finished work remained the same.

That said, it didn’t feel like a long term sustainable routine as I felt tired and exhausted by the end of my experience. In the end, I didn’t feel like Jobs’ routine really suited the type of work I do.

This experience has proven to me that having a routine is great, but finding one that actually works for you is the most important thing. Still, I was proud to challenge myself with this particular morning routine.

Plus, I managed to learn a thing or two, like how I like to drink juice, put on a pre-planned outfit, and wonder if I was happy with my life first thing in the morning.

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About Aaron J. Williams

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