There have been few occasions where I have met a mind as interested with daily routines and habits as I am. But that’s Bombay born, Perth raised and Melbourne based illustrator and designer Jeffrey Phillips for you – intensely inquisitive and curious, with a barrage of little-known-facts always at the ready.
Commonly known as ‘Jeff the Peff’, the versatile illustrator is famed for his monochrome doodles and polished drawings, often accompanied with a witty caption.
Drafting and redrafting his daily habits as if his day were a sketch, Jeffrey regularly sets himself experiments and exercises to inject a little fun into the mundane – trialling the optimal waking time, practicing the piano before bed, testing his memory during his morning stroll. ‘All these little things serve to make me feel in control of my day, and provide a sense of agency over my life’ he says.
Having worked as a freelancer for almost five years, Jeffrey relishes the freedom to do (mostly) as he pleases. ‘One thing I absolutely treasure and value about the routine of being a freelancer is that anything I do is for myself, and there is usually no demand for my time early in the morning, so I am free to do as I please.’
From a leisurely morning consisting of eggs, podcasts and piano playing, to mastering the art of the handwritten ‘to do’ list, Jeffrey takes us through his day.
Jeffrey Phillips’ ExtrAordinary Routine
I’ve flirted with all types of waking hours. There used to be a time when I didn’t set an alarm and I could wake up anywhere between ten and twelve.
Then there was a time when I woke up before six to hit the gym with a bunch of friends. I know from taking Gretchen Rubin‘s habit tendency quiz that I’m an ‘Obliger’, and there is no way in hell I’m going to wake up before six on my own terms. But now those friends don’t go anymore, so I don’t have anyone to hold me accountable.
Currently, I set my alarm between eight and nine, depending on what I get up to the night before. Night Jeff is very optimistic about the time he can wake up in the morning, but Morning Jeff would much rather sleep in and have a long, leisurely breakfast.
I like to take my time getting up, and there might be a snooze or two. I’ll generally take a quick look at my phone to make sure there isn’t an emergency brewing, then I’ll go and conduct my morning.
Typically I will have eggs or porridge and a coffee for breakfast. I have my set routine, but I enjoy taking little deviations from it. If it’s an egg morning, I cook them in different ways. Sometimes they are hard boiled, sometimes scrambled, there is an English style of scrambled eggs and there is an American style, there is also an Indian style. Sometimes I’ll have them on toast, sometimes it will be an omelette.
I love to listen to a variety of podcasts, and in the morning I’ll listen to ABC AM for bite sized news, and occasionally I’ll also listen to The Economist.