This past July I was allowed into Nelson Mandela’s prison cell on Robben Island. I’ll never be the same after that profound experience. No bed. Extreme conditions. Spartan surroundings. And yet, he handled his suffering with grace, dignity and bravery
You are working on your book- The 5 AM Club. Could you give our readers an insight into the book?
Thank you for asking. Yes–my new book is The 5 AM Club and is based upon the ideas for early rising and the morning routines of legendary performers that I’ve been teaching for twenty years. By owning our mornings we set ourselves up to win our days. And the way we live each day defines how we craft our lives.
Can you recall that one life changing experience/ moment which changed your life forever?
This past July I was allowed into Nelson Mandela’s prison cell on Robben Island. I’ll never be the same after that profound experience. No bed. Extreme conditions. Spartan surroundings. And yet, he handled his suffering with grace, dignity and bravery. Every picture of Nelson Mandela after his release from prison shows him smiling. I’ve learned so much about what true leadership and humanity means from this great man.
Your works often refer to some philosophies, ideas which are spiritual. In a world driven by materialism, why do you think there is an audience for spiritual ideas?
I’ve never seen such an appetite for spiritual guidance. Most people have tried to find more joy and peace buy owning more things, building more status and accumulating more power. Those things are all fine, by the way. We are human. And we live in the world. But the smart game is to be in the world but not attached to it. The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari and The Leader Who Had No Title have helped so many millions of people because it showed them a higher way to live. One that balanced success with significance. One that blended materialism with meaning.
While you have referred to it on various platforms or in videos/ books, we would like to tell our readers about your daily routine. What time do you get up, how do you keep yourself fit, how do you motivate yourself, deal with professional pressures etc. to name a few.
My 5 AM Club actually starts around 4:30 am. I just need that runway for a couple of cups of great coffee and to write in my journal. I list the things I’m grateful for, record a blueprint of how I intend the day to unfold and generally just download my thoughts in free form. At 5 am, I do an intense workout to create a pharmacy of mastery in my brain and kickstart my metabolic rate. This sets me up for an ultra-productive day. While I workout I watch learning videos or listen to audiobooks. I also hydrate with water enriched with antioxidants and supplements. By 6 am, I’m on fire to get great things done.
What is that one advice you would give to our readers who want to discover their real calling?
Tough question–and one I get asked often at my live events like The Titan Summit and Personal Mastery Academy. I’d say trust your instincts over your intellect. I was a litigation lawyer and pursued that career because it was reasonable and my mind told me it would bring success. But what’s the point of being successful to society yet a failure to yourself? So I left my job and wrote a book. That move made no logical sense. But it felt so right. Instinct is so much smarter than reason.
(The interview was first published in Vistara magazine, the official magazine of Vistara airline. Photo credits: Office of Mr Robin Sharma)