6 Things Successful New Yorkers Do Before 9 a.m
Every day, New Yorkers take on the world as entrepreneurs, artists and innovators in one of the most connected and competitive cities in the world. With a day like that, many lay the foundations for success before they even get to the office.
Here are habits some of the most successful New Yorkers practice before 9 a.m.:
Whether you like to exercise in the a.m. or work on the New York Times crossword, you’ve got to get the blood flowing and wheels turning. Alternatively, walking the dog or choosing a subway stop further from your apartment wakes your body up and helps to put the day in perspective. Take a page out of Anna Wintour’s book. She plays tennis every morning before taking up the reins at Vogue.
Contributors at “The Observer” suggest that to start the day right, consume “uplifting and instructive information.” Keep the content close to home with the light-hearted “The Strip” in the New York Times or the latest snapshots on “Humans of New York.” Stay plugged in to current events and public relations in New York, of course, but be sure to follow an aspirational source that offers constructive ideas and some good news.
7:00—Keep Things in Line
“The Big Apple” is always rolling but successful New Yorkers take time out to plan the day or even meditate, like hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb. For some professionals, that may mean some pre-work quiet time, making a simple to-do list, or plotting the best commute to New York LaGuardia Airport for an investor’s meeting out of town. Consider making a list of your top priorities for the day—quantitative or qualitative—and commit to accomplishing them, much like Kenneth Chenault—the former CEO of American Express—does to prepare for the coming day.
7:30—Dress the Part
From Williamsburg to Chelsea, this city knows fashion, on the subway and on the runway. Whether you’re a theatre professional who has literal costume changes or a CEO in Midtown, know your lifestyle and dress to impress. But dress with practicality in mind, too. For example, pack comfortable shoes for the commute, and leave some shiny Oxfords in the office.
8:00—Use the Commute
On average, New Yorkers spend over six hours commuting each week, and so they have to take advantage of that time—use it or lose it. Due to traffic, many New Yorkers take public transit (including astrophysicist and TV host Neil deGrasse Tyson), hail cabs or hire a driver. If you aren’t driving, you can use this time to prepare questions for new team member interviews or go over your training presentation. Whether you drive or ride, plug in an NYC-born podcast, like the always-current “Slate Culture Gabfest” or the hyper-local business and event profiles from “The Bowery Boys.”
8:30—Think Beyond Today
NYC professionals live by the words, “Work hard, play hard.” Just look at all the world-class entertainment, art and dining they have at their fingertips. To follow suit, do something you love, even if it doesn’t directly affect your business. You might be surprised by the difference a balanced life makes. Try a new breakfast place near your office space and spend time with friends and family before work. Attend morning voice training for better presentations all day or invest in the future and your small business community by joining a morning meetup and build entrepreneurial networks that will be meaningful down the road.
9:00—Get to Work
New York City doesn’t slow down. To keep up with an NYC-like schedule, you’ve got to be proactive. Laura Vanderkam suggests in the book “What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast” that to be more efficient at work, it’s important to use the morning productively before you’re even on the clock. So, by the time you step through the office door, it’s go time.