Sunday, July 31, 2011

A Night Owl No Longer... In My Dreams

images.jpgFor some time I have been setting my alarm for seven am with the promise to my self that I will wake up and go for a run, do some yoga, watch the sun rise, hit the gym. At first I simply hit the snooze, then I started putting my alarm on the other side of the room. This simply meant I had to walk farther to hit the off button and go back to bed. I tried having friends call me early in the morning to wake me up and I simply wake up earlier than they are supposed to call and turn off my phone... or go back to sleep as soon as I hang up. There has only been one occasion where I got up early to run and I was on vacation sleeping on an incredibly uncomfortable fold out couch. I was so damn proud of myself that morning! Alas that was over a month ago and I haven't been able to accomplish that goal since. Imagine waking up every morning and the first thing I do is disappoint myself. What a way to start the day!

I've always enjoyed sleeping in in the mornings, it went along nicely with my night owl habits. My mind is most active and yet at the most peace at night. I'm the only night owl in my family and I have grown very accustomed to the hours on either side of midnight in which the house is quite and still. When I was younger I spent those hours reading. I remember staying up till five am to finish Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Those books always came out in July right around my birthday and I could stay up as late as I wanted and read to my hearts content. These days I spend my time mostly online reading the thoughts of people who inspire me or looking at pictures that capture my attention.

These days I have an intense yearning to change those habits. I want to know what the stillness of the early mornings is like. I want to wake up and be thankful for the fact that the sun came up again. So I started researching the reasons that some of us are night owls and others can pop out of bed in the morning with a smile on their face. Turns out some of us are genetically predisposed to being a night owl. Researchers at the University of Surrey have isolated a gene called Period 3 which regulate our circadian rhythms. The other part has to do with our daily habits and lifestyle. Not to worry though it's likely that my sleep patterns will begin to change as I age... sometime around age 60!

Part of me wants to say who am I to mess with genetics... just accept it but I'm tired of waking up grumpy every day. My family has a saying when they see me in the morning, "Don't poke the bear!" I don't wanna be feared anymore... it's time to let my naturally loving nature show through! I can do it... I will do it... I hope.

Has anyone successfully gone from a night owl to a morning person? How'd you do it? Any tricks?

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