Observe the work environments of as many established firms as you can. All of them have one thing in common; they are all set for early risers. The early morning conferences and breakfast meetings are designed in such a way as to maximize productivity in the morning. And the worst thing is that the source of your favorite booster shot; the coffee maker is switched off in the afternoon.
You also may have friends who wake up early feeling fresh and energetic. And they tend to wind down as the day wears on.
Your body, on the other hand, functions based on an entirely different schedule. You experience a spurt of energy in the afternoon. And it lasts till late at night. Studies show that the time when a person feels energetic depends on genetics. They agree on one thing though. There exist certain biological differences between a night owl and an early riser. Melatonin, the hormone that induces sleepiness reduces greatly in the later hours of morning for a night owl. Night person also has a high temperature in the afternoon. This, experts say is the cause of their increased energy during the time.
A majority of professionals are neither night owls nor early risers. They generally fall in the middle path. However, the time a person becomes more energetic depends on his/her genetics.
An early riser wakes up at dawn without complaining of grogginess. And they are more energetic in the early hours of the morning. The night person on the other hand wakes up late and is more productive in the afternoon. If they are forced to wake up early, they do so complaining of grogginess. And they become active when the day is about to end.
Whatever is the situation, you cannot mould the general pattern as per your liking. An attempt to rewire your biological clock too is going to fail miserably. Still, you can stay productive throughout the day by changing or adopting a few habits.
Given below are a few tips to assist your efforts here.
- Set up a routine
Over-sleeping is a temptation night owls often fail to resist. Remember, everything in excess is bad and sleep is not an exception. Too much sleeps makes you tired and forgetful. Set up a routine so that you can go to bed and wake up at a specified time.
Begin with a journal. Note down when you feel most energetic. You can set up a routine based on this information.
- Prepare for the day ahead
Prepare a to-do-list for the tasks you have to complete the next day. This way, you will make sure that you can just dress up, reach the office and get to work. It will do wonders even for an early riser. But preparation is the lifeline for a night owl who is always late for work because of his sleeping pattern.
- Take up that difficult assignment in the afternoon
Make sure that you are taking up that tough assignment during your peak hours. It is true that you will have to plan your day accordingly. However, doing difficult things when your energy is at your peak will help you complete the same on or before the deadline. Just see to it that you are not sending emails to your boss at midnight.
- Sleep for seven to eight hours
Whatever is your sleeping pattern, you have to sleep for seven or eight hours. It implies that going to bed at 2 AM does not give you the freedom to sleep till afternoon. If you are habituated to this harmful practice, it is high time that you change. Set up an alarm so that you may wake up after that recommended time. If you don’t sleep well, you are sure to feel groggy when waking up. And your productivity will get affected.
- Stay hydrated
Studies show that night owls are smarter than their early riser counterparts. For this reason, you have to nourish your brain to perform well during the day. Drink lots of water. Don’t wait until you feel thirsty. Know that thirst is a signal that you are dehydrated. Set a timetable and do accordingly. Dehydration will decrease your concentration and affect your productivity.
Yes, being a night owl in a world designed for early risers is tough. But these guidelines will definitely help.