Note to readers: Morning Stars is a series of interviews with achievers across fields about their morning routine and how they get ready for the day ahead. Mornings bring optimism and a fresh start. And how we spend them sets the tone for the day.
As President - Aeris Communications, Rishi Bhatnagar deals with complex technological systems. But his approach to starting his day is simple. Early to bed and to rise is his mantra. Breakfast must have fruit and milk. And as a northerner based in Delhi, he is partial to puris and parathas.
Excerpts from a chat with the Internet of Things expert on the Mornings of his Days.
What time do you get up on working days? What do you like about mornings?
I would like to quote Benjamin Franklin. ‘Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise’. My mornings usually begin as early as 5 a.m. Experiencing the calm and the chirping of birds is the best thing about my mornings. This serenity helps me begin my day with deep meditation.
How many hours of sleep do you need?
I try to get a minimum of six hours sleep every day.
What would mornings be like during college days? Can you share a funny anecdote?
My college days were filled with a lot of hustle and bustle. Mornings would be spent running around the house, getting ready to board the bus to college.
Do you reach for your phone for news/ messages right away or do you stay offline for a while?
It is an occupational hazard to be online in near real-time. I believe one must give some time to yourself in the morning hours without using any gadgets. However, my professional role demands I stay updated. I prefer reading emails as one of my first tasks in the morning.
What are the two or three things you do in the morning that are important for you to start the day on the right note?
A combination of three things that keep me fully charged, fit and active are yoga, brisk walking and meditation.
What kind of exercises and/or meditation do you do in the morning?
As mentioned above, I believe yoga helps me deal with mental stress and develop higher concentration. Simple asanas like Pranayama followed by Sahaj Yoga meditation and brisk walking get me charged and ready to function smoothly for the day.
What is your regular news source in the morning? And what do you have while you consume news (coffee, tea or something else)?
Getting adapted to the ‘New Normal’, I feel, a cellular phone is the best medium to get quick news and daily updates in the mornings. Therefore, I prefer my hand-held device as the news source, followed by national news on television alongside a cup of tea with my family.
What's a must-have component/ nutrient in your breakfast?
A combination of fruits and milk are my morning must-haves. Being a true Indian and a foodie at heart, poha, parathas and aloo-puri are my favourite breakfast dishes.
What are the two or three cities that you have worked in and know well, and what do you like about mornings in those places?
Hong Kong and Dublin. In the former, I was living near the sea shore. The fresh air and view of the sea was a beautiful aspect of the mornings there.
As far as Dublin goes, I can never forget white mornings with snow all around. It was like living in pure oxygen.
How do you decide what to wear at work? Is there anything you are particular about with regards to your attire?
I dress for the occasion. So it’s formals for meetings, semi-formals in the second half of the week. I like wearing cotton and breathable fabrics at work and while working from home as well.Follow our entire Morning Stars series here.