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Guess What PIMCO’s CEO Reaches For When He Wakes Up

Off the Cuff

He's steering the helm of one of the largest international global investment firms, with more than $1.82 trillion in assets, yet Pimco CEO Mohamed El-Erian, still finds time to put his feet up, pen a New York Times bestseller, and ponder the definition of "The New Normal".

His lifestyle is far from average; from managing real assets and hedge funds for multi-million dollar corporations from his office in Newport Beach, Calif., El-Erian said he owes his unwavering success to his most valuable asset — his family.

"If anything there's too much work and not enough family. I'm very fortunate that I have an incredibly supportive and understanding wife and daughter. They nudge me along, reminding me that I have got to get the balance right," he told "Off the Cuff."

Finding the balance between work and home life can be a challenge, as we all know, in this age of constant connectivity. Emails, text messaging, more emails. Where does it end? 

"I think that's something we all struggle with. What is the right balance?" he added.

Some of us struggle to find work-life balance as early as the sun rises. Case in point — checking our blackberries as we roll out of bed. El-Erian says he's no different.

"I check what's happened overnight in Asia and Europe, and I'm afraid to say I do this even before I brush my teeth," he said.

El-Erian, Oxford-educated and author of, "When Markets Collide: Investment Strategies for the Age of Global Economic Change," has been a go-to source on information from the European debt crisis, to the Federal Reserve's quantitative easing plan. "I find writing is very relaxing for me," he said.

With the recent presidential election, El-Erian has been cast into the limelight for his forward-thinking, featured in "The New Normal," outlining the human cost of partisan politics and its lasting effects on the nation's economy.

For him, it's not just having monetary wealth that's important. It's having a sense of pride.

"I think wealth is your values. Values are really important. They define, at the end of the day, in that last minute of your life whether you feel that you've achieved something or not. Whether you feel like you've contributed back," said El-Erian.

Investment is much more than financials, he said, it's personal.

"There's a reason why I've been able to have a privileged life in terms of exciting jobs, and that's because people invested in me. My father invested in my education. Mentors invested in me. So the first thing that makes me proud is to give other people the same opportunities that I had."