Even if you trained as a monk, wrote a best-selling book called Think Like a Monk, just released 8 Rules of Love, and are the chief purpose officer of the Calm app, life isn’t all om and deep breaths. For Jay Shetty, it’s more about interviewing people for his top health podcast, On Purpose; tending to a business; managing speaking engagements; traveling; writing; and teaching online courses. Here’s how he does it all and still has time to reflect.
6:00 a.m. Take note
The first thing he sees is a pink sticky note that reads, “What are you grateful for?” So instead of first thinking, I’m tired, he might think, I’m grateful I got some sleep, but I’m going to go to sleep earlier tonight. This sets the day up better and prompts him to ask what shift he can make to be even more grateful tomorrow.
6:05 a.m. No scrolling
To keep from looking at his phone, Shetty listens to music, nature sounds, or a guided meditation. “I’ve tried to not do anything else but brush my teeth, but that can get pretty boring after a few days,” he says.
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6:15 to 9:00 a.m. Meditate and move
Shetty continues through his morning TIME acronym. After thankfulness and insight, he meditates for about 90 minutes, then exercises for about an hour.
9:05 a.m. Outies or innies
“Getting your brain to switch from a creative meeting to a data meeting is like trying to drive across L. A. at lunchtime,” he says. “No matter how well you planned, it’s going to be hard and take a long time.” So he defines some days as outward days (meetings, being on camera) and others as inward days (being with just his team). Days get further designated as finance days, creative days, etc.
10:55 a.m. Schedule free time
On back-to-back meeting days, “I try to book 25- and 55-minute meetings. That gives me time to stand up, stretch, get hydrated, and look into the distance and give my mind some space.”
1:30 p.m. Deal with disruptions
Shetty schedules everything, including lunch (usually a vegetable bowl). But then the day happens. To define his priorities when everything seems urgent, “I ask myself three questions: What needs to be achieved today? What needs to be achieved this week? And what needs to be achieved this month? I also give myself permission to say, ‘This doesn’t need to be completed at all.’ ”
7:30 p.m. Do something
He tries not to work in the evenings. Since he and his wife don’t like the same workouts, they’ll take walks after dinner or go to a local spa with cold plunges and infrared saunas. About once a month, “I’ll have a friend or two over, and we will just play FIFA all night. It makes me feel like a kid again,” he says.
9:30 p.m. Check in and check out
Shetty checks in with himself on what he didn’t do that day and how he needs to edit tomorrow accordingly. Then he does a short meditation to pave the way to sleep.
This article originally appeared in the January/February 2023 issue of Men’s Health.
Marty Munson, currently the health director of Men’s Health, has been a health editor at properties including Marie Claire, Prevention, Shape and RealAge. She’s also certified as a swim and triathlon coach.