What Night Owls and Morning People Can Teach Each Other

Last week, I wrote a post over at my LinkedIn blog that went viral.

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Entitled, Why You Should Try to Be A Morning Person, it told you — well — why you should try to be a morning person. (The title was vague, I know!) In a few days, over 150,000 folks read it, and I got tons of comments from morning people and avowed night owls defending and promoting their choices. 

The responses taught me one main thing about both morning people and night owls alike.

That main thing?

That both groups hate hearing advice from the other. 

No, really.

These are the kinds of comments people left, again and again and again….

  • So you’re a night owl? You love staying up until the wee hours of the morning working hard and being crazy creative in a way that people who live in daylight who could never possibly imagine? Good for you. BUT KEEP IT TO YOURSELF.
  • So you’re a morning person? You love to wake before the birds to get a jumpstart on the day, and then brag to everyone else who rested and productive you feel? Cheers. BUT SHUT YOUR TRAP.

The reason that both groups hate hearing such advice is likely fairly obvious to most of you. It’s the same reason that anyone, anywhere, hates hearing that they way they are living their life is wrong. People love being right, and they love to defend the choices they’ve made. People hate being wrong, and hate being told so.

The problem, though, is that as with many things in life, admitting that what you’re doing isn’t necessarily the 100% best solution is just the first step to trying something new. And trying something new just might be the ticket to you becoming a healthier, happier, person. 

Although my post was titled Why You Should Try to Be A Morning Person (and not, Why You Should Try to Be a Night Owl), it very well could have been. I simply took one perspective I personally believe, and wrote it from that angle. In contrast, though, when I wrote a post on 5 Reasons to be a Morning Person earlier this year, my mother immediately responded with a Night Owl’s defense.

My point?

That trying another person’s perspective on for size (yes, even a perspective that is a full 180 degrees from your own), is worth a moment. You might learn something, you might get better at being you, or you might become an even better person.

If you’re a night owl, is there anything you can learn from morning people? If you’re a morning person, can night owls teach you anything of use? I’m betting so. So what is it?


Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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5 thoughts on “What Night Owls and Morning People Can Teach Each Other

  1. The world is made up of various distinct people who succeeds in life, no matter if they are morning owls or night roosters. Or should it be the other way around? hmm. (the result of having too little sleep can have this mind illusion effect)
    And for the famous saying, “The early bird catches the worm.”
    However, nobody realizes that the worm also rose early.. albeit as bird feed.
    (seems proper timing is everything? or maybe it’s not time to wake up yet, for that poor worm i mean)

    A Time for Everything – Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

  2. Isn’t the whole freaking point of reading a blog…to read about, learn from, and ultimately incorporate the wisdom of others? What’s with all the SHUT YOUR TRAP business? Please…tell me what you think is awesome! Tell me why the way you live your life is THE BEST so that I may try it on for myself. It doesn’t mean you’re right or I’m wrong…though you might be, and I am willing to be. What would that say about me if I wasn’t woman enough to admit my shortcomings, and brave enough to address them?

    (ahem). sheeesh.

  3. Let’s talk about those of us who are BOTH morning people and night owls. I’m sure I can’t be the only one. I know it’s not healthy for me to get so little sleep during the week, but I rationalize that I do try to make up for it on the weekend. I am sure I read a study, somewhere, that says you can, indeed, catch up on sleep.
    I have been this way ever since I can remember. I would do much better with a 27- or 28-hour day; I am rarely ready to go to sleep after being awake for 18 or 19 hours. Even reading in bed doesn’t put me to sleep! And I can count on my fingers the number of daytime naps I have taken as an adult, unless of course I was sick or injured.
    After reading your posts (and your mother’s response) I have decided I may as well celebrate the way I am, since I have the best of both worlds. And I realize that I don’t necessarily work harder than those in either the day or night camp, since I do use some of my waking hours for downtime.

    • I also burn the candle at both ends. However, I live for daytime power naps. My perfect day begins at 6, shuts down between 1:30 and 4, then picks back up until about 1 a.m.