Busy Cardiologist Dr Riaz Motara Works A 4-Day Work Week – Here’s...

Busy Cardiologist Dr Riaz Motara Works A 4-Day Work Week – Here’s How


Vital Stats

Dr Riaz Motara is a successful cardiologist with a busy practice in Melrose Arch. And, worried about the shocking state of South Africans’ cardiovascular health (South Africans have the highest blood pressure in the world), he decided last year to also launch a start-up that combines a Bluetooth monitor with a smartphone app to deliver blood-pressure reports to patients’ doctors.

Despite having a practice and a start-up to balance, he works only four days a week and makes time for other things in his life.

I only work four days a week

Not much happens after 12pm on Friday, anyway, so I decided to pack in a bit more from Monday to Thursday, and not work at my practice at all on Friday. This frees me up to have the odd meeting related to my start-up Kardiofit, but also allows me to spend more time with my family and do other things that I want to do.

It’s all about managing your time effectively. By working hard from Monday to Thursday, and then taking the next three days off, I can give my work a lot of time and attention for four days, and then give my family and other pursuits my full attention afterwards.

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You need to live in the now

People — especially business people and entrepreneurs — can become so focused on the future, that they completely forget about the now. You need to be happy now. The future is never guaranteed, so you need to find that work/life balance today. Yes, it is important to work hard, but you need to keep that balance.

It’s all about managing your time and getting the most out of your day. If you keep working non-stop, you’ll burn out. You need to not only manage your time and productivity, but your health and happiness as well.


We are all faced with so much stress, yet nobody has taught us how to actually deal with it

And when we don’t deal with stress adequately, it makes us ill. You need to find a way of shutting off and letting go. I try to live life free of attachment — I try not to be too attached to the outcome of any event.

That means I am happy either way — whether I fail or succeed. For many people, when they have a great idea, or want to start a business or a career, the first thing that happens is that fear sets in.

What if I fail? If you are able to manage your fears — and would truly be happy regardless of whether you have a positive or negative outcome — that is when you can move forward and really create exciting things.

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Fitness is not about going to a spinning class and pushing your body hard for an hour

I’m not a fan of any sport or activity that puts too much stress on the body. You might have a great body now because of it, but what happens forty years from now? When it comes to health and fitness, you need to think long-term.

My entire life has been about striving to provide a service

I believe that if you are able to provide a service, everything else follows from that. The minute you make it about the money, without the service, you are setting yourself up for failure.

If I’m able to be of better service to people that I come into contact with — if I am able to help them grow emotionally, spiritually or financially, or whichever way they want to grow — then that’s what I would like to do.

Remember this

Provide good service and everything else will follow, without long hours and zero family time.

GG van Rooyen
GG van Rooyen is the deputy editor for Entrepreneur Magazine South Africa. Follow him on Twitter.