5 Bedtime Routines of Famous Financial Gurus


Whether you're Joe Schmo or Bill Gates, there are just 24 hours in a day. Of course, not everybody spends them in the same way. Let's face it: Some people are better at managing time than others. And in a world where time equals money, it's often those with the best time management skills who are raking in the dough.

It's not just how we spend our waking hours that counts — our habits pertaining to slumber also affect our income, stamina, success, and productivity.

Read on for our roundup of evening rituals of these famously successful people. Because who wouldn't want to sleep like the fabulously wealthy?

1. Read a book

Bill Gates, who reads around 50 books per year, reserves the last waking hour of his day for reading. Yes, even on the stressful, exhausting days, Gates always makes time before bed for a good book.

If you're wondering why someone like Gates has made this a priority, wonder no more: Not only does reading fuel creativity, it also helps a person de-stress while introducing new perspectives and expanding their knowledge. Hard up for something fresh to read? Here's every book recommendation that Gates, the richest man in the world, has ever shared publicly.

2. Unplug the phone

On the brink of slumber, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg checks her email one last time. Then she turns off her cellphone, signaling an end to the day. Unplugging this way can be "painful," Sandberg has admitted, but she conceded that she has found it to be the key to a good night's sleep. If the phone is on, she's said she is much more likely to be disturbed during the night.

This is a smart habit to take up for yourself. Not only can waking up to check your phone in the middle of the night reduce the quality of your sleep, it can also cause anxiety, according to researchers at California State University.

3. Track your sleep

In complete contradiction to Sandberg's routine, business magnate Elon Musk uses his cellphone to track his sleep. His nightly sleep count averages about six hours, he admitted in a 2015 Reddit AMA. In preparation for this shut-eye, Musk, an avid consumer of coffee and Diet Coke, cuts himself off from caffeine six hours before bedtime.

There are a number of smartphone apps that can help you track and understand your sleep cycles. Experts recommend seven to eight hours for most adults, though the true number is individualistic and likely depends on genetics. Getting enough sleep is critical to a satisfying social life and a high performance career. Here are a few top-rated sleep app options: Sleepbot, Sleep Cycle, and MotionX 24/7.

4. Treat yourself to quiet time

Oprah Winfrey designates 20 minutes at the end of her day for meditation and silent reflection. By allowing herself a regularly scheduled window during which she can decompress, Winfrey says she has reaped more benefits than she ever imagined. "The results have been awesome," she said. "Better sleep. Improved relationships with spouses, children, coworkers … Greater productivity and creativity all around."

We all know how to sit quietly, but meditation takes a little bit more know-how and guidance. That's where a meditation aid can be helpful. Try the smartphone apps Sattva or Buddhify. You can also find guided meditations on YouTube.

5. Skip the wine — soak in the tub

Entrepreneur Arianna Huffington's nighttime routine is ceremonious, and it comes in two stages. The first is simple: Skip the nightcap. Booze before bed can certainly help a person fall asleep, but the quality of that sleep will suffer. Instead, Huffington, who says she endeavors to clock seven or eight hours of shut-eye each night, indulges in a candlelit bath with piping hot water and Epsom salts. Then, after she gets under the covers, she takes a moment to count her blessings.

"I pause to think about the things that I'm grateful for in that moment," she wrote for The Telegraph. "That way my blessings, not my worries, get the closing scene of the night."

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