Monday, June 26, 2017

Morning Person or Night Owl?

Depending on who you talk to, you may get different times of what exactly defines a morning person or a night owl. Just so you will have my perspective on what I am calling a morning person vs. a night owl; a morning person is someone who gets up at a civilized time such as 7:00 A.M. and a night owl is someone who stays up to the wee hours of the morning, of which I call 1:00 A.M. The morning person has a routine of going to bed around 10 P.M. in order to get a good 8 hours of sleep. The night owl must sleep till 10 A.M. in order to receive the same amount of sleep. 

Science has proven that the human body functions better on 8 hours of sleep. I do have some friends who insist they only need 5 hours. Then, to them I say, "Rock on!" I am not one of those people. When I had a job that required me to be at work at 7 A.M., I did need a swift kick in the rear to get me up at 5:30 A.M. That is just an indecent time for me. Even though that was my routine, it was not a pleasant one for me. 

Reading through some articles on sleep which tried to prove to me differently is the reason that I am writing this blog. If someone does not want to change their mindset of being an early bird then I really don't believe there is a chance of switching their belief. For me, I had to go to bed at 9 in order to receive the benefit of having 8 hours of sleep. If it was not a night of enough deep sleep, I was fit to be tied. Bring on the coffee, strong and black and lots of it.

Having a nightly routine and a morning routine when keeping those kind of hours was a must for me or else you would not want to be around me. Since my job entailed lots of instant decision making, I had to be ready. There was no gradually getting into my day. I did find that when the time of year rolled around when the sun was up, it made it a bit more bearable to rise and shine. Luckily for me, I never got in the habit of hitting the snooze button. Plus my husband put the alarm clock on the other side of the room. The sound of Van Morrison singing softly at first was the signal to get up before he started singing at top notch volume.

If you added up the times that I listed above, you may see that they equal 8 1/2 to 9 hours of time. I did this on purpose because if you have ever had your sleep monitored, you know that it is not a constant. I am lucky enough to have a FitBit which measures my sleep efficiency. It shows me in a graph form of when I was restless and when I was in a deep sleep and adds up the total time of deep sleep. That is the kind of sleep that you need to be productive and creative.

There is a point that I disagree on, and that is that morning people are more productive and creative than night owls. Think about entertainers who have the night life due to their performance times. They then must sleep a lot of the morning away in order to get their 8 hours of sleep. Some of these night owls write beautiful music and are some of the most highly creative people on earth. This is their bodies' creative time.

Due to job circumstances, they may not be able to make the switch, even if they wanted to, in order to be a morning person. Benjamin Franklin's saying of "Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise," certainly does not fit some of the multi-millionaires in the entertainment industry. Jobs that are 24/7 which require some to work night shifts fall into that same category (only without the mega-bucks for the most part)! 

It is my belief that each one of us must find where we function the best if we are lucky enough to have that option. I feel best when I get up and get into a routine. The one routine that I have not been able to get through the hurdle is to get up, throw on exercise clothes, drink water (not glorious coffee) and go to exercise. This is in spite of the fact that I am lucky enough to have an exercise room with three machines and weights. Also, at least 5 months of the year, a beautiful pool to swim in or do water jogging. 

All of the experts say that exercise in the beginning of the day is better for you and gets your metabolism started for the day. I find that it works best for me to exercise after I have had coffee while dressing, then have breakfast and get started on my research and writing. This is the time of the day that my creative juices are slowing down. I may need a power nap and then a work out before dressing for the evening for dinner.

Find what works for you in order to function at your optimum level.


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