The Thrive Questionnaire//

Martin Whittaker: ‘The Good People I Surround Myself With Make Life Easier’

The JUST Capital CEO on prioritizing unread emails and setting your phone on mute


When you have the opportunity to ask some of the most interesting people in the world about their lives, sometimes the most fascinating answers come from the simplest questions. The Thrive Questionnaire is an ongoing series that gives an intimate look inside the lives of some of the world’s most successful people.

Thrive Global: What’s the first thing you do when you get out of bed? Martin Whittaker: Check my email. If no fires, I put on the radio (NPR).

TG: What gives you energy? 
MW: Exercise, and positive feedback from people I respect.

TG: Tell us about your relationship with your phone. Does it sleep with you? MW: Yes, I’m sorry to say. But it also sends me to sleep because I listen to audiobooks and podcasts on all sorts of things to send me to sleep. Last night I listened to “Our Island Race” by Winston Churchill and had fallen asleep by the time Boudica had sacked London.

TG: How do you deal with email? 
MW: I always clean my inbox. But I prioritize by the person, the issue, and the wisdom required in the response.

TG: What’s your secret life hack?
MW: The only things that make my life easier are the good people I surround myself with. That and setting my phone on mute.

TG: You unexpectedly find 15 minutes in your day, what do you do with it? MW: Call my wife. Or check the soccer news in the English Premier League if she is busy!

TG: When was the last time you felt burned out? 
MW: Yesterday.

TG: Share a quote that gives you strength when times are tough. 
MW: “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” —Theodore Roosevelt, Paris, 1910

Originally published at medium.com

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres. We publish pieces written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Learn more or join us as a community member!
Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

Thrive Global
People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.