A Day With Bika Rebek
8:00am: I wake up from a combination of street noise and the repeating alarms I set on my phone. I take a while to get up and tend to be quite grumpy and a little confused in the mornings until I have my first coffee. I developed a habit of starting my day with an affogato – a coffee with vanilla ice cream in it. This started when I ran out of milk one day and replaced it with ice cream.
9:00am: After the first coffee, my brain goes into production mode, and I can focus on difficult tasks, especially writing. When I have a complex text or email to write I usually draft it out the day before and then read through it in the morning to make sure it makes sense before sending it out. I recently read ‘When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing’ which makes a strong case for organizing your day according to personal energy and mental capacity levels. I find it almost impossible to write at night, so mornings are reserved for that.
10:00am: This is when I am often on a call with my business partner, Daniel Prost, who lives in Vienna – the time that makes the most sense because of the six hour difference. We chat on Slack all the time, so the calls can sometimes feel like an extra chore, but it’s important for measuring the emotional barometer in addition to just getting work done.
11:00am: At this point, I am usually over-caffeinated and in action mode. I hop into the shower and then peer into my wardrobe, which seems to never have anything in it that I actually want to wear. After trying on at least three outfits and settling on a compromise option with mismatched patterns I bike to NEW INC, the incubator space next to the New Museum. The five minute ride is quite intense as it takes me through little Italy, Chinatown and then the aggressive traffic of Bowery. After five near- death experiences I arrive into the brightly lit office space with shiny columns and concrete floors designed by SO-IL.
11:35am: In theory I should post something on social before noon but I get distracted by my inbox.
12:00pm: I like to use lunchtime for in-person meetings that can then be combined with a meal. It’s important for me to be able to connect with people I work with on a personal level and lunch is a great time to build connections with people you are not quite sure you want to have dinner with yet.
1:00pm: My favorite spot in the area is Lighthouse. It's a tiny spot with healthy-ish and delicious bowls, salads, and sandwiches a few minutes from NEW INC. I also once saw Waris Ahluwalia there. Nolita is buzzing a this time of the day, and Instagram influencers are taking photos on every corner. When it’s sunny out I head to the Elizabeth Street Garden and have lunch outside.
2:00pm: It’s time for coffee again and probably a chat with a random person at NEW INC. We compliment each other on our outfits and I feel quite good about the day. This is a good time to get design work done, finish up a presentation, or do some kind of task that needs a medium level of attention.
4:00pm: In an ideal world, this is when I do pilates or yoga – there are a few great studios in the area, and I love working out at that time. I usually feel most sluggish at this time and the workout gives me a kick. I especially love New York Pilates and WOOM Yoga across the street from the office. I keep a little bag with workout clothes under my table so I can always spontaneously (not) go.
5:00pm: I am back at the office to do some more work, usually design or administrative stuff. 5pm is also when I realize that I haven't tackled the really annoying things on my to do list yet. Not my favorite time of the day.
5:15pm: An acquaintance happens to be at NEW INC, and the chance encounter reminds me that we are due for a catch up, so we get a coffee. I feel a sense of guilt for not working but then it feels important to connect. We're supposed to grow our network, right?
7:15pm: Someone I know has an opening in the area, so I stop by for a drink.
8:45pm: I run into a few friends at the opening and we decide to get dinner. Because everyone is on a budget and it’s a big group we go to Congee Village and order ridiculous amounts of dumplings. There are at least five Insta-stories documenting this unique experience.
11:30pm: I realize that I haven't sent that one email I was supposed to send out today. I make a mental note to send it first thing in the morning.
12:00am: I mope around my apartment, vaguely thinking about the next day and what I need to do in the morning. I often read the news at this time of day, or just enjoy the depths of the internet. My couch is beautiful but not very comfortable, so I manage not to fall asleep on it most nights. Sometimes I start thinking about a big idea at this time that keeps my brain spinning. Fantastical dreams become actual dreams.