There are two types of people in this world: those who pop awake, all sunshine and cheer, surrounded by chirping, animated birds, and those of us hiss and recoil at the dawn, burrowing further into our beds like bedraggled ghouls. If you fall into the second category and would rather learn how to be a morning person, life can be tough. Society is oriented around early risers — school and work usually start around 8 a.m., and it can take time, and medically-questionable amounts of coffee before night owls are able to function fully.
But if you're a creature of the night, are you doomed to a lifetime of groggy mornings, or is it possible to change?
To a certain degree, how early you wake up is determined by genetics. A 2016 study by the consumer genetics company 23andMe identified 15 areas of the human genome that are linked to being an early riser. They found that having just one of these 15 genetic variants could increase someone's chance of being a morning person between five and 25 percent. Experts point out though, that being an early bird or a night owl isn't an either/or situation — it's a scale, with people falling somewhere on a spectrum.
Furthermore, circadian rhythms — our internal body clocks — are adaptable, which means even though we may be predisposed to staying up and sleeping in later, it is possible to shift our sleep patterns.
Changing our sleep habits can be difficult though, and what works for one person might not work for another. So, one user decided to turn to their fellow Redditors for answers. Below are some of their tips for how to train yourself to be a morning person.
Also known as the "fake it 'til you make it" method.
Relocate your alarm.
Nothing like lurching across your bedroom, Walking Dead-style, to get the day started!
Be careful about lights.
Avoiding Twitter before bed is good for your sleep and your soul.
Practice good sleep hygiene.
If this list isn't extensive enough, Arianna Huffington wrote a whole book about getting a better night's sleep.
A rather harsh approach.
An extension of "exhaust yourself."
Make a schedule and stick to it.
You may be miserable in the morning, but at least you'll be used to it.
Coffee, coffee, coffee.
The answer to all of life's problems.
You should of course consult your physician or healer first.
Embrace your truth as a creature of darkness.