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Starbucks’ CEO Reveals 3 Secrets In His Daily Routine That Helped Him Beat Executive Burnout

Fortune Well October 31, 2023


Starbucks’ CEO Reveals 3 Secrets In His Daily Routine That Helped Him Beat Executive Burnout

Laxman Narasimhan’s ethos for thriving in the workplace is simple: Take care of yourself first and avoid meetings after 6 p.m. unless they are vitally important. 

Narasimha, CEO of Starbucks, took the reins of the global coffee giant just over a year ago. He credits mindfulness, exercise, and time with his family with helping him combat the burnout that’s commonplace in the c-suite—and its adverse physical and mental health effects.

“I’m very disciplined about balance,” Narasimhan tells Fortune

Here are Narasimhan’s weekly non-negotiables for success at work and at home: 

1. Meditation

Narasimhan meditates for 20 minutes in the morning and for 10 minutes to wind-down before bed. 

“It helps me get ready for the day,” he says. “It also helps me reflect on the day.”

Narasimhan swears by the practice saying it keeps him attentive, connected, and engaged during a work day.

“I’ve found meditation to be truly powerful,” he tells Fortune. “It’s a way for you to get mindful, for you to get centered.” 

Narasimhan brings his daily practice to the Starbucks HQ, similar to other CEOs who have been vocal about their health and wellness habits. Before major meetings, Narasimhan tells Fortune he holds a group meditation. 

“We can connect with ourselves and through that, be open to connecting with others,” he says. 

2. Family first 

Not everything is urgent. Despite C-suite status, Narasimhan says he must ignore the noise sometimes in favor of focused time with his family. He does not typically take late meetings unless they are dire. 

“If there’s anything after 6 p.m. and I’m in town, it’s got to be a pretty high bar to keep me away from the family,” he says. “Anybody who gets a minute of time after that better be sure that it’s important.”  

3. Exercise 

Exercise can help reduce stress levels, which can, in turn, help people counter the effects of a demanding workday. Narasimhan racks up 150 to 250 minutes of exercise weekly, even though a bulk of it lands on the weekend, he says. 

“I find myself being driven by that time,” he says. “At 7 p.m. on Sunday, I hit 250 minutes.”

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