The results are in! According to a recent poll on our Facebook Page, voters decided that being a night owl was far better than catching the morning worm.
Let me guess…it’s way past a “normal” bedtime and you’ve found yourself up and wide awake. Maybe you’re like myself and in the middle of a late night kitchen creation, re-decorating frenzy, midnight grocery shopping, or just hard at work.
It’s night time and you feel wide awake.
A tendency towards being a night owl can actually run in families (my family enjoys being up late too!) and when presented with the typical 9-to-5 setup can manifest into a very stressful cycle.
Wake up by 7 A.M.
Start work by 9 A.M.
Leave work at 5 P.M.
Second wind before 11 P.M.
Sleep by 1 A.M. or later
For me, this has been a way of life since I was a teenager. Depending on what projects I am working on or if my mind is busy I can often find myself up until dawn. I stopped asking why I was a night person a long time ago when I found contentment in the benefits of my late night lifestyle. So, what is beneficial by staying up late?
1. Higher intelligence
Researchers in 2006 and 2009 confirmed via the science journal Personality and Individual Differences noted night owls scored higher on a series of IQ tests versus regular schedule participants.
2. Physical strength
Apparently night owls display a phenomenon called “night strength”. Our strength increases around 9:00 P.M. It was hypothesized that the increase was in the spinal cord and motor cortex excitability. This is the opposite of early risers motor cortex which peaked during daytime hours. If you enjoy working out in the afternoon or nighttime, this could be why.
3. Creativity strikes
The stillness of the night can be the perfect environment for a night owl. With fewer distractions and general quietness, this can facilitate a peaceful time to slip into a reflective state. We will exhibit more conscious thinking, wandering minds stretching further than typical thinking that will beg to birth new ideas. This is when our inner musician, programmer, artist, or writer (I’m writing this at 3 A.M.) decides to come out and play.
4. Flexible personalities
Have you ever shared a space with an early riser? They generally function very well on routine. Waking up happens on a schedule. Going to bed has a specific time. When there’s a slight disruption in those schedules it is more difficult for them to be flexible and adapt accordingly. For us night owls, we are more spontaneous and go-with-the-flow (even during daylight hours) and can adapt more to varying sleeping patterns.
5. You’re part of a tribe
There’s a whole secret society! No, seriously back in 2005 Von Glitschka, an illustrative designer created The Night Owl Society after working for 12 years as a “creative hired gun” for agencies across the globe and noticing that he, and many other designers like him, work so much better at night. If you enjoy the quiet uninterrupted perk of working late at night the group might be for you. Membership is available for anyone and you’ll receive a membership certificate, sketch pad, and more when joining. Check them out on Facebook as well!
Our nocturnal tribe soars at midnight. We are the night owls -– whose pixels, presses, polygons and projects flourish best under obsidian skies.-Von Glitschka
Day and night
So, there you have it. Morning people and night owls are really two different species when you break it down. I know there’s benefits to both sides of the sleeping wars but often night owls get a bad wrap. Just remember, no matter if you are an early bird or night owl you are unique and special, just like your circadian rhythm.
Don’t stress about changing your natural sleep preference and pattern unless there is a real need to do so. Be who you really are and shift your view of being a night owl as a strength rather than a problem that needs to be solved.
The next time someone gets on you about your late night schedule, just tell em’: Ten percent of the population is up with me!