Disconnecting with GoSquared CEO, James Gill

For someone whose business revolves so closely around the online world, James Gill has learned how important it is to spend time away from the screen and disconnect.

In the Age of the Internet, we fear missing out more than anything, and this fuels our desire to stay even more connected. In our rush to be the first to retweet, to be the first to ‘gram it, or to be the first to FB react, we tend to mistake opinions for facts and misinterpret gossip for truthful information.

Slow down.

Just as how GoSquared methodically helps businesses understand and interact with their customers, James makes the time to really get to know the people he works with in real life and to reflect on how he wants to live his life right now.

In this piece, he explains not only how he stays focused on the things that matter in a typical workday, but also how he happily clears his mind of all the clutter during his time off.

Be prepared

I aim to wake up at 6:30am every day. However, my day doesn’t start until my first cup of tea.

After a shower, I try to get my inbox to zero and ensure I have all my tasks outlined in detail so I know exactly what I’m doing before heading into the office.

Talk is not cheap

We take lunch as a team every day – it’s always been an important part of the culture at GoSquared to ensure we connect more deeply as a team. It’s also a wonderful opportunity for us to share and hear about the extremely riveting weekends we’ve all enjoyed.

We’ve found that we are normally at peak productivity in the morning, so we try to save less urgent meetings and discussions for post-lunch, and sometimes combine the discussion with a stroll around the park to get our energy levels back up again. We do whatever it takes to make sure we’re in the right state of mind so that we can continue to produce good work.

Disconnect every once in a while

It used to be that when I got home I’d simply continue with my work until I felt like going to bed. But I’ve since learned that this is a such terrible way to live life. Instead, now when I get home, I try as hard as I can to switch off, and to cook – which is a creative and relaxing process I love (and often has tasty rewards).

More importantly, instead of watching TV, I try to listen to music and read as a way to wind down from a busy day. I also avoid looking at my phone as early as I can to ensure that when my head hits the pillow I’m truly ready to nod off, and to get a good night’s sleep.

Look after yourself

It’s incredibly common advice, but whenever I exercise I genuinely feel so much better about my day and myself. I’ve learned that going for a quick run or a quick swim can have a profoundly positive impact on your state of mind for the whole day.

I also try to avoid the news as much as I can. We’re surrounded by a 24 hours news cycle, and when you start to understand how the world of media works, you start to realise how little value it actually adds to your life. There’s so much overlap between news reports nowadays that in fact, the more news you read, the less you end up knowing. The most important stories will reach you one way or another.

Some of the best advice I’ve received is to be more “stoic”. Worry only about the outcomes you can change – trying to live this way enables you to be calmer and more focused.


Started in 2006, GoSquared is a customer engagement platform that helps thousands of businesses convert their website visitors into paying customers.

Are you a SaaS founder and want to be featured on our blog? Please contact [email protected]


  • September 4, 2018

    Simon Belmount

    Wise words!

Post a Comment