Does the early bird really catch the worm? The answer from us is a big fat yes!
Actor Mark Wahlberg famously starts his day at 2:30am, Whilst Richard Branson always sleeps with his curtains open, so the sun wakes him at 5:45, and Michelle Obama is working out by 4:30am!
The idiom ‘early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise,’ has really gained some traction in recent years, and as a holistic health coach, I can’t reiterate enough how a small change to your routine like this can make a big impact on your life.
Yes, I hear you, life happens, people have children/ the chaos of 2020 throwing a spanner in the works. But when I made it a priority to be up with the lark, it made me more productive, I gained momentum in everything I did because it felt like time had expanded somehow, I gained strong self-discipline and things began to align. Here’s why…
Synchronicity, it’s a thing
This is important night owls, you’re out of sync with life. There, I said it. Don’t blame yourselves mind, blame the discovery of light bulbs and lighting. Now throw our new friend blue light into the equation and we’re all so over stimulated come the evening, it feels nigh on impossible to get the recommended eight hours. But, we can train ourselves to be in sync with the planet we live on, just like every other mammal does (bar your dog.) When the sun goes down, mammals go to sleep, when the sun rises, they wake. Simple.
‘The more you’re in harmony with nature, the more you’ll be in the right place at the right time, all the time’ says Joshua Rosenthal, founder and director of the Holistic Nutrition school in New York. ‘Whatever turns day to night, night to day, season to season, whatever has the planets circle each other in perfect harmony and controls the climate, it looks after the whole Universe. And by being in sequence with nature, you will somehow naturally be in the right place at the right time.’
Don’t believe it? Give it a try.
Willpower decreases as the day unfolds
I realised that my least productive hours of the day were the hours just before I went to bed. Ever find yourself being so disciplined with what you eat all day, only to find yourself in a Netflix marathon with a tub of ice cream come the evening? (Don’t worry I’ve been there too.) Here’s why, the amount of available willpower is highest right after sleep. During the day, willpower is used, and it reaches minimum level in evening. Therefore, people often break resolutions at the end of the day, so early risers find it easier to make healthy, productive choices.
It makes you more positive
It turns out, early risers are likely to be less plagued with negative thoughts making them more proactive thanks to willpower working its magic, leading to a self-amplifying chain of events throughout your day. This means early birds anticipate problems and solve them quickly, unlike our night owl counter parts. ‘The way you start you day determines how well you live your day.’ Says elite performance expert and author of ‘The 5am club’ Robin Sharma. ‘We become victims when we recite our excuses so many times we actually believe they’re true.’
The magic before the day begins..
Now don’t get me wrong, climbing out of bed each morning can occasionally be the most difficult task I’m faced with throughout the day. But once I’m up, the whole world’s still sleeping, the silence, the stillness, it all gives me a head start on my day before distractions and obligations arise, setting me on an incline. And every time I find myself reaching for the snooze button, this lovely quote from Sharma pops into my head. ‘When faced with a choice, always choose the one that pushes you the most, increases your growth, and promotes the unfoldment of your gifts, talents, and personal prowess.’ And like the cliché that I am, I’m skipping to my yoga mat to see the sunrise.