Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Get Up Early #My500Words #243

My radio alarm clock is set for just before 07:00 on weekdays - just in time to tune into Morning Ireland on RTÉ Radio 1. I have a dreadful habit of staying in bed to listen first to The News, and then to It Says in the Papers before getting up.

Lack of time is often cited as an excuse/reason for writers not to write - we feel we just don't have the time to write. Other things get in the way, but we should spend time on the things we value most - so make time for writing is today's message. Many writers do their best work in the mornings - get up and write a couple of thousand words before breakfast. According to Forbes.com, the Top 10 Advantages of Waking Up Early are:

  1. Earn better grades
  2. More proactive
  3. Anticipate problems
  4. Better planners
  5. Time to exercise
  6. Get better sleep
  7. More optimistic
  8. Early commutes
  9. A quiet hour
  10. More family time


Image source: Via Romea.

I particularly like #6 and #7 - sleep experts say that if you go to bed early and get up early, your body is more in tune with the earth's circadian rhythms, which offers more restorative sleep. As for optimism - other experts say that that early risers exhibit character traits like optimism, being agreeable, satisfaction and conscientiousness. Later risers are more likely to exhibit traits like depression, pessimism and being neurotic. 

Just yesterday Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, according to The Verge, released a motivational alarm clock app. The Rock gets up early every day - at 04:00. The Rock Clock, as he calls it, is all about "setting your goals and waking up early enough each day to tackle them". And to get it out of the way, the Rock Clock does not have a snooze button! Sounds like a great app, though as yet I can't use it on my Windows phone because it is only available on iOS and Android. It can even let you set goals like "lose weight" or "run 30 miles per week". The Rock says "It's my anchor and will always be my edge over my competition. You don't have to wake up at the ass crack of 4am dawn to find your anchor. Whatever it is that gives you "your edge" over everyone around you - then that's what you do", and that from this "historic day forward - I'm waking your ass up" - motivational stuff! I seem to recall someone like Tony O'Reilly saying a long time ago that Ireland would be much better off economically if everybody started work an hour earlier. I get up shortly after 7, but usually do not get to work until between 09:00 and 09:30. What am I doing for two hours? The answer is that I take my time over breakfast (tea and brown bread), read the papers on my iPad, check email (just personal - never work), check Facebook, and sometimes check Twitter. By the time I'm showered and dressed it's suddenly 08:30. I must make better use of this time in the morning.

When you wake up at 05:00, you start your day earlier than 99.9% of the world - hence giving you a head start in your day. And of course, you get to see the world wake up!

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