Rise and Shine



I’m going to go out on a limb and say most of you hate morning people.

I remember sitting in class at 8:30 a.m. in my first year of university and scowling at every woman who walked in looking calm, put together and awake. I was as bitter as a cold cup of black coffee. Then I came to college and learned what it actually means to get up early every single day or risk serious penalties.

Society tells us morning people are the people you want to have on your team (if you can handle them), but why is that?

To start off, there’s this magical thing called a chronotype, which is determined by your internal clock. It indicates when a person prefers to sleep in a 24-hour period. Generally, we fall somewhere on a spectrum between larks (extreme morning-types) and owls (extreme evening-types). In 1970, Swedish researchers confirmed these types exist, and they’ve stood the test of time.

A 2012 study by the University of Toronto looked at people’s chronotypes and moods and found larks reported more overall positive emotions than owls. While young people are rarely larks, the findings were consistent across both younger (ages 17 to 38) and older (ages 59 to 79) demographics.

On the other hand, owls get more tail and test slightly better than larks. A 2012 study found young men who are night owls have more sexual partners, and a 1999 study found self-proclaimed owls tested slightly better on a few different intelligence measures. Being an owl is usually seen as negative, but it’s typically because of the party lifestyle associated with staying up late.

I think we hate morning people because it’s hard to be a lark before reaching retirement age. This chronotype is rare in young people, making these folks a sought-after bunch. We might hate morning people, but they’re put together and they get stuff done before noon — and both are valuable traits for employers.

Over time, I’ve changed my chronotype slightly to survive Creative Communications. I’m proud to say I’m now mostly functional between 7 and 11 a.m.

If you’re also a self-identified lark, flaunt it. Being positive at 8 a.m. is really hard, but it’s valuable. The person who hires you one day might be a night owl and still appreciate that about you. So don’t be shy, chirp away.

Raegan Hedley is a sassy millennial who aspires

to someday become a kick-ass business professional.

In the meantime, she writes on her blog at raegjules.com

and tweets way too much @raegjules.