Early bird is almost like a cuss word in the corporate world and it is indeed fashionable to be a night owl! Yet, most of us will agree that working till late in the night ruins the mornings as you drag yourself out of bed with a foggy mind and sluggish body.
Imagine a scenario where you wake up with a smile, glide through the morning chores and eat a mindful breakfast. If you speak to someone who wakes up between 5-6 am , they can boast about refreshing mornings with sufficient time to do everything they want and still make it on time for work.
Here are some advantages of waking up early
Happier day: Do you find yourself rushing through every task in the morning ? When you are worried about getting ready on time, you get frustrated and that is reflected in your behavior towards spouse, children, parents, and it even spills over at work on colleagues and subordinates. Getting up early with sufficient time in hand to finish morning routine peacefully makes you feel relaxed and happier. Dr Joerg Huber of Roehampton University said: “morning people tend to be healthier and happier as well as having lower body mass indices.”
Use productive hours: Early morning hours are the most productive and it’s the time when creative thoughts flow unabated and positive vibrations are experienced. There is also some quiet and peace both, inside and outside, which allows you to stay calm and think better.
Reduced stress and depression: Studies show that repetitive negative thinking occurs more often in individuals who have shorter duration of sleep and go to bed late in the night. Sleeping for 6-9 hours everyday can help prepare the body to handle negative thoughts and emotions.
Time for fitness: Waking up early gives you enough time for exercise , which can further release the happy hormones to set the tone for joyful mood for the day. Even if you don’t like to sweat it out, simple activities like meditation, a stroll in the park or just watching the sunrise can be equally rejuvenating.
Kickstart metabolism : Those who wake up early get hungry in the morning for breakfast, the most important meal of the day. Having enough time for preparing a good wholesome breakfast gives the necessary boost to your metabolism and helps in maintaining healthy weight and blood sugars.
Road to success: Researchers have found interesting associations among behaviours of individuals who are early larks rather than night owls. Early risers are found to be more persistent, agreeable, cooperative, have improved memory, concentration and better problem solving. Christopher Randler, a biology professor at the University of Education in Heidelberg , Germany reiterates that “morning people are more proactive, many studies have linked this trait with better job performance, great career success and higher wages”.
7 tips to make the switch to a morning person:
- Start with small changes to the routine by sleeping 30 minutes earlier than usual
- Create a bed-time routine and stick to that e.g. reading a book, writing a diary, contemplation, etc
- Keep gadgets away atleast an hour before you need to sleep
- Be conscious of body signals of sleep and waking
- Ensure lights are turned off and temperature is comfortable
- Avoid alcohol or too much food just around bedtime
- Plan a fun activity for the morning
If we could all follow our natural body clocks we would wake before sunrise and retire to bed early not having to look at the real clock . Contrary to popular belief, more quality and quantity of work can be accomplished in the morning hours than late night.
Mr 2018 has resolved to wake up early…what about YOU?
Nota JA and Coles ME 2015. Duration and timing of sleep are associated with repetitive negative thinking . Cognitive therapy and Research 39(2): 253-61