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Are Morning People More Successful?

We’ve all heard that the early bird gets the worm—but are morning people really more successful? Based on the schedules of some well-known early risers, such as Tim Cook and Michelle Obama, the early bird does appear to catch the worm.

Several studies support the idea that morning people tend to accomplish more and experience not just success in productivity, but in overall health and happiness. Here are some of the ways that morning people tend to be more successful.

Morning People Are More Proactive

Did you know that morning people are more likely to be proactive throughout their day than people who rise later? Being proactive means you’re able and willing to take action to change a situation to your advantage. Because early risers take more initiative, they’re often more successful in their careers.

A 2009 German study by biology professor, Christoph Randler, found that people with an early bird chronotype—those who naturally go to bed early and wake up early—demonstrated more proactive behavior compared to people with a night owl chronotype. The results also showed that people with more consistent sleep schedules between weekdays and weekends were also more proactive.

Motivation is at its highest first thing in the morning, meaning people who rise earlier tend to capitalize on their greater levels of willpower. Additionally, research suggests that after a night of restful sleep, your mind is more clear and focused as soon as you wake up, encouraging your productivity at work or home.

Morning People Are Happier

If increased productivity isn’t enough to make you want to wake up earlier, how about being happier? A 2012 study from the University of Toronto found that early birds feel they lead happier lives than night owls. The study also showed morning people were more inclined to express positive emotions versus their later-rising counterparts.

As for differences between younger and older participants, the research found that older people tended to be early risers, and the majority of younger people considered themselves late risers. However, regardless of age, all early risers reported greater levels of happiness than later risers.

One of the reasons why people might feel happier when they wake up earlier is because their schedule follows societal norms. Typically people work on a 9-5 schedule. Your mind and body can easily wake up for your job in comparison to someone who naturally prefers to go to sleep later and wake up around midday. Night owls tend to feel tired, groggy and unhappy when their body doesn’t want to be awake.

Morning People Are Healthier

Morning people are not only physically healthier than night owls, but their mental health is usually better, as well. Increased access to sunlight and daylight has shown to improve your mental state and decrease the likelihood of depression.

Doctors have studied our brains after a restful sleep and suggest that our inner-cranial volume is actually larger when we first wake up. This means we are more likely to succeed at complex tasks first thing in the morning versus in the evening, decreasing stress levels for the rest of the day.

People who are morning larks are also more likely to exercise in the morning. Research suggests that people looking to lose weight or improve their health receive better results when they exercise before work. Additionally, working out also increases the likelihood of having a restful sleep and better cognitive function in the morning.

Morning people are also more likely to be thinner and have a lower body mass index than night owls. Experts believe this is because night owls have de-synchronized internal body clocks, affecting their metabolism and possibly leading to an increase in weight. Morning people receive more bright light, which regulates circadian rhythms and energy balance.

Boost Your Morning Health and Happiness

The research shows that natural early risers tend to accomplish more, creating a greater sense of happiness and well-being. Waking up early offers an opportunity to take advantage of more daylight, have more time to work on meaningful projects and prioritize our health and well-being.

For ideas on how to become a morning person and how to develop your perfect morning routine, check out these related articles:



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