Waking up early may sometimes feel like a chore, but scientific evidence suggests that rising early in the day can benefit one’s life in many ways. Waking up early has been scientifically linked to long life, as well as financial success.
Sleep and the longevity of life have long been synonymous, and recent scientific studies have backed up this theory. According to the University of California, people who live the longest self-report sleeping for only six to seven hours each night. Other Studies also show that ‘sleeping more than 7 to 8 hours per day has been consistently associated with increased mortality’, though this study suggests the cause is probably other factors such as depression and socioeconomic status, which would correlate statistically. Furthermore, the correlation between lower sleep hours and reduced morbidity only occurs with those who wake naturally, rather than those who wake up with the aid of an alarm clock.
The old phrase, ‘the early bird catches the worm’ – meaning whoever arrives first has the best chance of success – is the perfect metaphor for the advantages of waking up early. In a 2008 Texas University study, college students who identified themselves as ‘morning people’ earned a full point higher on their GPAs than those who were ‘night owls’ (3.5 vs. 2.5). Good grades help students secure better career opportunities, so waking up early may be the key to success in many ways. Furthermore, Harvard biologist Christoph Randler discovered in 2008 that early risers are more proactive. His studies showed that early risers were more likely to agree with statements like “I spend time identifying long-range goals for myself” and “I feel in charge of making things happen.”Randler’s research also revealed that ‘morning people’ are more likely to anticipate problems and minimize them efficiently, which leads to more success in the business world. In essence, these studies prove that waking up early equips the person with the ability to use their morning quiet time for organization, goal setting and planning out their days and weeks ahead, and therefore, enables them to be more successful.
Many successful business people are known to get up early to exercise before their working day starts. Regular exercise boosts mood and fitness, providing energy on the job and creating deeper sleep cycles. Apple’s Chief Executive is known to begin sending e-mails at 4.30am, and hits the gym at around 5am, and Disney Chief Executive Bob Iger is also said to awake at 4.30am before exercising. Sleep experts say that if you go to bed earlier and wake up earlier, your body will be more in tune with the earth’s circadian rhythms, which offers more restorative sleep – equaling a focused mind.