Ann Summers boss Jacqueline Gold, 57, chats routine, meditation and work-life balance

I have a morning routine that’s quite regimented, so the only way to fit it all in is to get out of bed on time. I’ll meditate for 15 minutes before preparing the day’s meals, from morning juice to evening dinner, which I’ll leave in the fridge. I love cooking – it’s so therapeutic.

I need a dog. I go for a brisk walk every day around 6.30am, but I must look so odd because everyone else is out walking pets!

I love that time because my daughter, Scarlett, eight, and husband, financial adviser Dan Cunningham, 40, are still in bed, so I have a few hours to myself to recharge and clear my thoughts. If it’s particularly rainy, I skip the walk and do a workout in my gym at home.

My house comes to life at 7am. That’s when the rest of my family wakes up and it suddenly gets very busy! After spending time with Dan and Scarlett, I’ll head to the office for 9am. Most days I’ll have lots of meetings to attend, as well as emails and calls to field.

I also catch up with my employees to see how they’re doing and keep up to date with what they’re working on. The majority of my colleagues are women, which is something I’m really proud of.

It’s hard to switch off. I used to do 14-hour days and it was horrendous, but now I try to clock out from work no later than 6pm.

It’s so important to get that work/life balance right, which is something I learned after my health problems in the past few years [Jacqueline was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016].

My husband works from home so often he’ll pick up Scarlett from school, but I make the effort to do it when I can. My daughter is now at that age where she really wants to play games and I enjoy being a hands-on mum, so I’ll challenge her to a few rounds of Snap before dinner.

I love a routine. In the evenings we always have a super-healthy meal. Monday is fish, then Tuesday will be chicken and on Wednesday I go out for dinner with my sister Vanessa and my dad, David.

It’s a routine we’ve had for years and I love it. Then on Thursdays we have a vegetarian night, maybe a Mexican rice dish with kidney beans and spices. Fridays we mix it up a bit and might go out for dinner.

Sleep is so important. Scarlett goes to bed by 8pm on school nights and I always tuck her in. I’m usually pretty exhausted, so I’ll chuck on sloppy clothes and watch TV with Dan for an hour.

At 9pm I’ll run a salt bath, which sets me up for an awesome sleep, before going to bed at 9.30pm.

I’m religious about putting my phone on silent – I don’t want it to compromise my rest.

I work hard, so I have to sleep hard, too.

  • Jacqueline’s Women on Wednesday competition runs every Wednesday via her Twitter feed @Jacqueline_Gold.

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