Back in 2007, Arianna Huffington was editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post. She was also exhausted—to the point where she actually collapsed one day and broke her cheekbone. While she soldiered on with her editorial duties until 2016, when she stepped down from the site, Huffington’s has become increasingly passionate about wellness, and sleep. In 2016 she released a new book, The Sleep Revolution, and an audiobook with Audible, Goodnight Smartphone. The latter is a play on the classic children’s book Goodnight Moon, which Huffington didn’t see much of growing up in Greece, but read over and over to her kids. It’s essentially a Greek-accented lullaby preaching a habit she’s since become “zealous” about: falling asleep without a screen in sight. Here, she shares her nightly routine, plus everything she manages to squeeze in during the day, from Hamilton to Dustin Yellin, with her culture diet.
First thing you read in the morning: Do texts from my daughters count? Then it’s onto the news. But before all of that, I try to do 15 or 20 minutes of meditation before looking at any screens or devices—starting this way stays with me all day long.
Books on your bedside table right now: I have a few books that are always on my bedside table, like Meditations by Marcus Aurelius and a book of poetry. I also have Mark Nepo’s new book The One Life We’re Given, and Thank You for Being Late by [Thomas L.] Friedman.
The TV shows keeping you up at night: Thankfully none—I’m too religious about my sleep, and if I admitted to staying up late watching TV, all the people I hector about their sleep, which is everybody I meet, would be vindicated!
Last movie you saw in theaters: Arrival, which I loved.
Last thing you saw at the theater: Hamilton. Which I loved so much I’d also like it to be the next thing I see at the theater.
Last piece of art you bought, or ogled: My daughter Isabella’s art, of course. She makes beautiful collages and mixed media, which are often partly representational but also abstract from a distance.
Last museum exhibition that you loved: It’s not exactly an exhibition, but I love Dustin Yellin’s Pioneer Works in Brooklyn. It’s a center for research and experimentation in contemporary culture.
Release you’re most eagerly anticipating: Bennett Miller is working on a documentary about our relationship with technology that I can’t wait to see.
Favorite podcasts: “Dear Sugar,” “How I Built This,” “Revisionist History,” and “The Sporkful.”
Last song you had on repeat: “The Room Where It Happens” from Hamilton.
Last concert you saw live: Beyoncé at the Barclays Center.
How you get your news: The way I’d guess most people do—a combination of online media, social media, and print. Actually I’d be in the minority on my stubborn love of print newspapers.
Do you still look at the Huffington Post? Yes, all the time. They’re doing a terrific job under their great new editor-in-chief Lydia Polgreen.
Favorite social media accounts to follow: [Huffington’s wellness company] Thrive Global, of course. I also still follow all the HuffPost reporters like Sam Stein, Ryan Grim, Amanda Terkel, and Ryan Reilly, among others.
Best nighttime advice: Don’t charge your phone in your bedroom. Our phones are our repositories of everything we need to put away to allow our minds and bodies to prepare to sleep—our work, our to-do lists, our anxieties and our worries. The last thing you want is all that right by your pillow!
Last thing you do before you go to bed: I like to read—but it’s important that it not be anything related to work!
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