Productive Morning: Is It Possible
Outside the World of Larks?

It’s a common belief that all successful people are morning larks. Well, that’s not just a belief: many CEOs claim they wake up early and don’t hit the snooze button. Does that mean that “night owls” have no chance to achievements above the average? In fact, chances are equal. However, if you actually wake up by the middle of the workday, you miss out a good half of your daily working hours.

Sounds bad, doesn’t it? The good news is that there are tools and practices to start a productive morning. Most likely, they won’t turn a typical owl into a lark, but they’ll definitely benefit your productivity and help achieve more.

Is it possible to become a morning person?

So, why do we have to wake up early if the body resists every attempt to do that? Does early start of the day mean that we have to readjust our internal clock? Is it bad for health? Well, let’s start with some sleep theory.

Our productive and unproductive hours are defined by circadian rhythms, or circadian clock. This is a pattern of myriads of processes in our body that schedule the timing of activity peaks and dips. These processes are “built-in”, but they are adjusted by external cues, like light or temperature. Different people have different timing patterns, or chronotypes, that’s why some of us are “larks” and some are “owls”.

Of course, personal chronotypes affect productivity and performance at the workplace, and cannot be ignored. Morning people tend to experience the effects of low energy at night, and are more likely to behave unethically in late hours, even if they are not unethical themselves. Evening people, in turn, are easily irritable and unproductive in the mornings but behave ethically and feel alert late.

So, mindlessly making everybody adjust their rhythms to any schedule is definitely a bad way. Instead, experts recommend to managers considering individual circadian rhythms when setting deadlines and expectations.As for employees themselves, it is recommended to stick to a comfortable and consistent schedule to keep circadian clock functioning as it should.

It is hardly possible to readjust the biological clock, but it doesn’t mean that your destiny is suffering from sleepiness in the morning and trying to get some sleep every night with no luck. There are many ways to make more use of morning time than fighting off drowsiness.

Keep your internal clock on track

Famous experiments in caves showed that the biological clock of most people tends to drift forward when there are no time cues.Volunteers that participated in the experiment lived in caves without knowledge of time, and their circadian rhythms ended up exceeding 24 hours: sleep and activity cycles of the participants mostly ranged from 25 to 30 hours. A Harvard research based on hormone rhythms and body temperature fluctuations proves the same: the natural internal clock is closer to 25 hours than to 24. But let’s be honest: that’s hardly acceptable even if you have a floating work schedule.Here’s what any of us can do to tune the internal clock to the 24-hour day, regardless of the chronotype.

  1. Build up a consistent sleep schedule and stick to it. Go to bed at the same time, and wake up at the same time. Extra sleep on weekends is often tempting, but it can destroy all your efforts. Wake up at your right time, but keep it regular.

Stay alert throughout the day

Well, after a productive morning, you definitely need to stay productive throughout the rest of the day. There’s some advice on how to help your body and mind stick to the healthy schedule.

  1. Eat the frog. This expression proceeds from Mark Twain’s observation that the first thing you do in the morning is eating a frog, you can go through the day knowing that the worst thing is already done. So, tackle the most difficult task first, and it will be easier to get other tasks done without anticipating the most unpleasant and inevitable to-do.

Make use of your gadgets

While it is destructive for your body’s clock to use electronic devices right before falling asleep, you can still use them for the benefit of your biological clock. There are apps that help build up a healthy sleep schedule, reclaim focus, and develop morning productivity.

  1. Sleep Cycle alarm clock. The app tracks your sleep phases and wakes you in the lightest one, which is the natural way to wake up actually rested. As it uses sound analysis to track sleep phases, there’s no need to put your device in bed.


While many people tend to hate mornings, there are many ways to make this time of the day more active and healthy. Even if you’re a night owl, it doesn’t mean that you have to survive mornings instead of enjoying them. Stick to a consistent schedule, don’t overwork, eat healthy, and start every new day with a happy and productive morning.

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