I used to think this was very characteristic of young adults and young teens. Staying up until 5 in the morning every morning either binge-watching supernatural on Netflix, or playing endless amounts of Overwatch. I could not for the life me, get myself into bed any earlier than midnight. Even if I was in bed, I was wide awake looking up beauty YouTube videos until 2 in the morning. Yes. I was that girl. Unless I had class that day, I would wake up at 2 in the afternoon. That was just how it went for me. Everyday was a repeat. Wake up super late and go to bed super late. I didn’t necessarily notice there was anything wrong with this behaviour since I was still getting my chores done, I still had time to get into work, and I still had time to waste. So really, I was comfortable with my night owl habits.
Transitioning to Early Bird wasn’t necessarily out of some inner motivation to get up early, be more productive, take advantage of my day, or maintain a normal sleeping habit. Actually, it was more of a work necessity, which is motivation within itself to get up early (money is a strong motivator). My job required me to be up and out of my house by 8:00am. Which really meant I needed to be awake at 7:30 to give me enough time to brush my teeth, get dressed, have a quick breakfast bar, and have 5 minutes to spare for social media lurking. Let me just tell you how awful it was. Every morning my eyes were heavier than the sins people carry around with them, my energy was an non-existent as the tooth fairy, and I had a stronger will for sleep than radical feminists have a will to destroy the patriarchy. It was torture. Worst part was, once I’m awake, I’m awake. There is no going back to bed once I’m up. I could lay there and attempt to return to my slumber, but any attempt would be futile.
Eventually the weekend came around and I didn’t have to be up at the crack of dawn for work. I finally got to sleep in. Friday night, I laid my precious head on my memory foam pillow, closed my eyes and began my slumber. I woke up Saturday morning feeling refreshed. I felt invincible. I also felt like it was 3 o’clock in the afternoon. I let out a calm sigh and whispered finally, I slept in. I grabbed my phone to check the time and
Mercy me, what on Earth am I doing up at nine in the morning? How can it be that my body just woke itself up on its own at nine in the morning? Who is responsible for this?
As it turns out, my circadian rhythm had recalibrated. After only one week of getting up at the earliest possible time, I was able to reset my internal bodily clock. I could no longer wait it out until two in the morning watching YouTube beauty videos. If I was not in bed by at least 11, you would probably finding me sleeping on the couch. I could also not bring myself to wake up any later than 10am. I started waking up at the same time as my mom who usually wakes up at seven everyday.
It’s one of those things you don’t really think about until it happens, and boy, did it happen. Even now, as I sit here and write this post for my fellow readers, it is 10am (I’m posting this later). Ask me six months ago if I thought I’d ever see a sunrise and I would, first scoff at you, and second laugh in your face. But now, I’ve done it. Without even actively thinking about it, I managed to turn myself from a night owl to an early bird and it is fantastic. I have more time in the morning to make myself a healthy breakfast. I have time to go to the gym and lift weights for two hours. I have time to study, get work done around the house, and write blog posts for you all. To top it off, I have enough time to spend a great night with my friends.
I used to think this early bird and night owl stuff was just an excuse for people who love to get up in the morning or can’t sleep at night. But I’ve realized that every person has a capacity to be both. Hell, I believed my entire life that I was meant to sleep during the day and party at night.
Well, look at me now.