The best thing I have ever done for my productivity is consistently get up early. But, let’s not start there. Let’s start with the fact that I’m not naturally an early riser. I have this amazing gift curse of being able to wake up and go back to sleep no matter what time it is or how long I have slept. Sounds great right? It is, except for when you decide that you need to get up early to be more productive. Every morning when my alarm goes off, it is an all-out fight to get out of bed and get my day going. So, to those of you that “aren’t morning people” I get it, but I also think that is a cop-out. Here’s why.
I don’t think there is such a thing as a “night owl” or an “early bird.” I think there are people that wake up easily, and those who don’t. We all need a set amount of sleep per night, 6 – 9 hours depending on the person. Does it matter when those sleep hours happen? What matters is that they happen at the same time slot in each 24-hour period so that your body gets consistent rest.
There is no such thing as a “night owl,” but there is such a thing as a “groggy waker.” I’m a groggy waker. And still, I find that getting up early is the single best thing I can do in my day to be productive.
Why is getting up early more productive?
- It’s quiet. This is huge because the distractions of the day come at your fast and furious once other people are awake.
- You are fresh. Yes, you might be groggy at first, but drink some coffee or do some jumping jacks and you will be fresh and ready to go. Attacking the day with a fresh attitude and perspective before the world wakes up is a particularly amazing feeling.
- You are more deliberate and focused. When I get up super early in the morning, I’m not interested in turning on the TV and vegging out (like I would at night). Instead, I’m ready to be deliberate with my time, so I sit down and get to it.
- You are proactive. You are setting the pace and tone of your day, not reacting to whatever happened to wake you up.
- It starts your day with a win and continues to add wins quickly as you knock things off your list before everyone else is up and after you.
This may sound crazy, but I can honestly say I’m a better person on the days that I get up early. I found that I need that time alone to start my day before the kids and colleagues invade my time. When I start my day early, I’m a better husband, dad, and leader.