When George Stephanopoulos greets viewers each weekday morning on ABC’s “Good Morning America” at 7 a.m., he’s been awake for a full five hours, the New York Times reports.
In a behind-the-scenes feature on the top morning shows — including NBC’s “Today” and “CBS This Morning” — the Times reveals that Stephanopoulos gets out of bed at 2:15 a.m. on workdays, earlier than any of his peers. He immediately begins meditating to focus his mind and energy.
Stephanopoulos then commutes to ABC’s Times Square offices to catch up on the news in preparation for the show, which he continues through wardrobe and makeup up until the cameras go live.
He’s one of many high-performing professionals who begins each morning with meditation, a practice that can take many forms but tends to be a minimum of 10 minutes spent focusing solely on deep and slow breaths.
Twitter cofounder and Square CEO Jack Dorsey, hedge fund manager Ray Dalio, and media mogul Oprah Winfrey have all said that starting the day with meditation allows them to rid their bodies of stress so that they can immediately begin working intensely without nervous energy.
It was this scientific evidence that convinced Stephanopoulos to give meditation a shot, specifically Transcendental Meditation, he told The Huffington Post’s Arianna Huffington at her Third Metric conference in 2013. Now he can’t live without it.
“It’s the equivalent of a couple hours more sleep,” Stephanopoulos told Huffington. “I feel more space in my life even when it’s not there.”