A Typical Day

Special Edition: №1–14

Miguel Guía

What is the rhythm of your day? How do you work?

Miguel: I have intense days, although for a while I have been organizing my time well. I get up early and spend my day on advancing all the necessary matters. My work order is to prepare ideas early, analyze what steps need to get done to achieve my daily goals, and concentrate totally on these since the very start.

Spain is famous for “siesta” - a mid-day 2-3 hour nap. I heard you didn’t believe in them?

Miguel: Well, it is not really a matter of belief, it’s a Spanish custom and I respect it. I know there are people who can’t live without it. I just personally prefer to sleep well during nights and use every minute of the day constructively (and simply enjoy the whole day).

Stever Robbins

What’s your typical day like? What are key parts of this day that help you stay productive, focused and motivated?

Stever: Typical day? There’s no such thing. I usually get up and start working around 9 a.m. I do my best writing in the morning, so that’s when I’ll work on articles or other writing-based projects. I work out around lunchtime, grab lunch, and my afternoons often have more people activities.

I keep my to-do list in front of me on paper, and I often return to it to make sure what I’m doing is actually useful, and not just a random diversion.

In my book, I pose a thought experiment. Imagine you’re talking to the Deity of your choice. He or she asks, “Are you living the life I gave you to its fullest, whatever that means to you?” I keep motivated by doing what feels like living my life to its fullest, and I drop whatever doesn’t meet that hurdle. The motivation comes naturally.

(To those of you who have read the book, you’ll realize that this is actually a fancy way of pre-deciding. I’ve created an “Absolute YES” list with one criterion: living life to the fullest.)

The hardest part for me is dealing with money. I’ve often chosen passion or social good over money, and it can lead to second-guessing, especially when the money isn’t following.

Jason Fried

As a president of the company, apart from the design what else do you have to deal with everyday?

Jason: Whole bunch of things. There is the general administrative stuff, you know things that come up in a business that you have to deal with… We just built our new office, so I spent 3 months there almost everyday while it was being constructed. Watching, making decisions, making tweaks, telling them this, telling them that, answering questions.

I also do the hiring of staff, thinking about new products and features ideas. Also a lot of people want to meet for lunch so I have to do that occasionally. A lot of business stuff. Every day is a little bit different…

So there is really no typical day? Or are they any typical parts of day that you always have?

Jason: Well, the thing that is typical for me is an Inbox. There are about 130 emails there every day. People asking questions about our products, our company, or they want some advice… so I have a lot of that to do, too. That’s about the only typical thing, everything else is based on what we are working on at the time.

Are you more of a morning person, or late night person? How would you describe yourself?

Jason: I get up early, but I feel like I’m doing most of my best work the second half of the day. And then a couple of hours before I go to sleep only to get back on and work. I just like when it is dark out, I get more work done when it is dark. I go to the office most of the time. But at night I do work from home. I leave the office at 5 pm.

Seth Godin

Do you have a typical day?

Seth: I don’t have one. I’m very much focused on not having a typical day.

Ok. But you still have to focus on having time to write, right?

Seth: Well, when I want to write, I write. When I need to write, I write. I think that modelling your day on someone else is a giant mistake.

Photo: Flickr / kengo CC BY-NC-ND 2.0