What would you give to wake up feeling energetic, well rested and ready to conquer the world every single day?
It goes without saying that your morning sets the tone for the rest of the day. The more productive your morning, the likelier you will have a more productive rest of the day.
Studies by the American Psychological Association show that morning people are healthier, happier and often more successful than night owls! Remember the saying, “early to bed, early to rise . . .”, well, it’s actually true.
Additionally, it seems that morning people are more likable too! They score higher on agreeableness, cooperativeness and conscientiousness, and they procrastinate a lot less.
Let’s clear up some misconceptions first. Evening people are not lazy. Like everyone else, they are at the mercy of their internal body clocks / circadian rhythms. This rhythm is actually ingrained into the cells while still in the mother’s womb.
Although we might feel powerless against our respective biological clock, both larks and owls are capable of being creative and productive in their “off hours”.
Your circadian rhythm also changes as you get older. Most children are larks, most young people in their 20s are owls and most people above 50 are larks.
In addition, only about 25% of people are morning people. About 50% are somewhere in the middle, and the other 25% are evening people. So, you’re not alone in your struggle to not hit the snooze button.
Override Your Biology!
Hitting the snooze button multiple times is a sign of sleep deprivation and has little to do with your body clock. So create a consistent sleep schedule that involves going to bed early and waking up early.
If you decide to go to bed earlier in the evening, start by adjusting your bedtime by 15 minutes at a time. Before you know it, you’ll be going to bed earlier than you ever thought possible. Remember to adjust your sleep pattern in small increments because your body clock will fight any drastic changes.
Light shifts your circadian rhythm, so put away your electronics at least an hour before bed. This gives your body enough time to wind down making it easier to fall asleep when you finally do go to bed. If you need a little more help falling asleep, take melatonin 30 minutes before bed.
Exposing yourself to super bright light in the morning (about 2000 lux) lets your body know that it’s time to get going. The light calibrates your body clock, boosts your energy and makes it a lot easier for you to fall asleep in the evening. The light can be natural or artificial so long as it’s really bright.
Just because you were born an evening person doesn’t mean that you have to endure it for the rest of your life. With a few well-timed changes, you can train your internal clock into making you a morning person!