“The unexamined life is not worth living,” said Socrates. But the over-examined life is not much fun, either. The modern cult of productivity, constantly striving to achieve more in increasingly limited time, can all seem a bit much. Much like when a LinkedIn user recently posted his obsessively optimised morning routine to much social media bewilderment: “5.30am: wake up, get dressed, walk to the gym... 7.20am: cook four egg whites and blend up a smoothie with vegan protein. 7.45am: rotate between Headspace for meditation or commit to language learning on Duolingo. 8.05am: drink 1 litre of water.”
There’s nothing wrong with spending 20 minutes a day meditating on Headspace or learning languages on Duolingo, of course. But 24/7 productivity is merely a faster track to burnout. Sometimes, we just need to disengage the brain and binge on Mindhunter. And, as that other noted – albeit fictional – philosopher Tyler Durden said, “Self-improvement is masturbation.” MR PORTER has therefore devised a more achievable morning routine that will make you function better, but not sound like a bore.