Going to bed early is not my style. I’m the type of person who “plans” to have an early night, but somehow finds myself heading to bed at 2:30 a.m. My late-night habits make me feel like crap though. So, I am working to find early morning inspiration so that I can finally be an early riser.
I know going to bed early will make me feel better, no doubt. And finding reasons to fight my second wind may provide enough incentive to finally get some decent shut eye … Here are three reasons why being an early bird pays off!
1. Improves Sleep Quality
Humans are not nocturnal. I know this, you know this, we all know this. Our bodies’ circadian rhythm is driven by a part of the brain called the suprachiachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), a group of cells that responds to light and dark signals. The body naturally tells us to rise and set with the sun. For this reason, it makes complete sense that our quality of sleep improves when we follow the sleep pattern naturally instilled in us. The sleepiness we experience during the day will be less severe if we have adequate sleep, and more intense if we are sleep deprived, according to the National Sleep Foundation. An early-morning routine will leave you more rested, consequently improving your productivity and diet.
2. Enhances Productivity
Coffee and tea are excellent stimulants; they keep you focused and jumpstart your productivity. Sipping on a warm cup of mint jasmine tea is a beautiful way to start the morning, but it’s even better when you don’t need it to function. You can simply enjoy a cozy cup of tea as you watch the sunrise — instead of sitting dead-eyed painfully waiting for the caffeine to kick in. The best way to fight early morning grogginess is getting a good night’s sleep. Alive, alert and awake, you can use your new-found daylight to do more! Use your extra hours to hit up a hot yoga class before work or make homemade banana-nut muffins.
3. Healthy Diet
It’s midnight. You told yourself you would go to bed an hour ago. Screw it. You’re watching another episode (or three). What’s better than a midnight snack with your Netflix bender?
If the description above sounds familiar, you are not alone. I am more than guilty of staying up into the wee hours of the morning, watching Netflix. (I devoured an entire season of Orange Is the New Black in less than a week). During my late-night Netflix binges I often find myself snacking. When we’re awake, we are going to eventually eat. Going to sleep early prevents midnight snacks. You cannot eat when you’re sleeping (that would be one hell of a party trick). Improve your diet by getting some early ZZZs.
There are only 24 hours in a day. It is easy to slash away our nights to make room for family, friends and leisure. Setting an early bed time does not eliminate time, it simply moves it. An early bedtime means more sunlight. More open businesses. It means coffee with friends instead of cocktails. Wake up and smell the bacon. Make yourself an early riser.
What motivates you to rise and shine? —Alexandra