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#MicroblogMondays 21: Internal Clock

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The Atlantic had an article last week about individual internal clocks, and how we’re not all programmed to be productive between 9 and 5.  I mean, yes, most people are good waking up in the morning and going to sleep at night, in the same way that the average body temperature is 98.6.

The article is about Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome (DSPS), which afflicts 1 in 750 people, causing them to be nocturnal.  I’m certainly not nocturnal, but my natural body clock doesn’t start winding down until well after midnight (as in I’m productive at 2 am) and I don’t feel like I truly wake up until about 1 pm.  If the rest of the world wasn’t up and productive in the morning, I would shift my day to fit my natural clock.  But since the rest of the world expects me to be awake during the day, I painfully drag myself out of bed at 6:30 am (though I usually don’t get to sleep until after midnight).

How is your natural body clock set?  Skewed towards waking up early and going to bed early, or are you more of a night owl?


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1. Vinitha 17. Isabelle 33. Laurel Regan @ Alphabet Salad
2. Mali (No Kidding in NZ) 18. Baby Blue Sunday 34. Daryl
3. Mali (A Separate Life) 19. The Doglady’s Den 35. The Stork Whisperer
4. Deboshree 20. Corinne Rodrigues 36. My Path To Mommyhood (Jess)
5. No Baby Ruth 21. Kasey 37. Queenie
6. Persnickety 22. Parul 38. Tara
7. earthandink 23. Cristy 39. S
8. Uma S 24. Solo Mama 40. With love, Tania
9. Mina 25. Mary Francis 41. Suzy at Someday Somewhere
10. Anks 26. m. (the maybe baby) 42. Cathy Graham
11. Middle Girl 27. A. 43. Gil (The Hardest Quest)
12. Rachel 28. One and Done? 44. deathstar
13. Kalpanaa 29. Dubliner in Deutschland 45. Pages, Stages, and Rages
14. Unpregnant Chicken 30. torthΓΊ il
15. Jen (Days of Grace) 31. Baby, Are You Coming?
16. Loribeth (The Road Lss Travelled) 32. Emma (Muddy Boots & Diamonds)


1 Vinitha { 01.19.15 at 5:25 am }

My sleep clock kicks in at 9.30pm, by 10 I am half sleep. But I get to bed only after 10.30. I am useless after 11. πŸ™‚

2 Mali { 01.19.15 at 5:51 am }

I’m not as late as you, but I definitely work later and rise later. And these days … later, and later, and later … Never been a morning person. Though habit is making me more of a night owl lately. Problem is my husband has a morning body clock, and is often ready for bed by 10 pm. Or asleep on the couch at 9 pm.

3 Deboshree { 01.19.15 at 6:01 am }

I am in a constant fight with mine during the weekdays. The clock works perfectly on weekends when I am up even though I had planned to sleep. 😐

4 Valery Valentina { 01.19.15 at 6:43 am }

Early! In NL two students got loads of numbers from their school, exam times and scores. They also did a questionairre for the kids for natural body clock. And they were able to prove that exams later in the day had higher scores for the night owls. They got in touch with a university and now have their paper published (as well as made it to a national newspaper)

5 No Baby Ruth { 01.19.15 at 6:44 am }

I’m a morning person for sure. At least, I was, and I really want to be again. Sleep issues have made that kind of impossible, but I can feel myself getting back there…

6 earthandink { 01.19.15 at 6:55 am }

I’m a night owl. A one in 750. I’ve gotten a great deal of criticism over the years for it. My response has always been: what happens if your house catches on fire at 2 am, someone you love has a heart attack after midnight, etc? You better hope the people helping you are night owls and not half asleep! (Not to mention, who should be serving you when you go out to dinner? Driving you in a cab at 3 am? Flying the red eyes? Playing in the concerts? And on an on.) No night owls, everyone’s staying home after 5 pm. No matter what!

7 A. { 01.19.15 at 7:02 am }

I am a morning person, built to be a high school teacher, where the day starts at 7am; after 4pm, mental acuity is operating and half. My husband is the opposite, struggles in the morning, can’t get to sleep until after 12 and sometimes 3am. It works a lot of natural balance and ‘me’ time into our relationship!

8 Persnickety { 01.19.15 at 7:02 am }

I am an earlyish person. But I must have breakfast otherwise I am not. I work with the light- up earlier in the summer ( mostly). When I was at college, we had self scheduled exams, and I always used the 9 am and 2 pm slots, but never ever the 7 pm ones. Self scheduled just meant you could pick the time slot from one of three over a period of four days- not take your exam whenever!

9 anks { 01.19.15 at 7:39 am }

Mid mornings are the most productive for me. My ideal day would start at 7 and end at about midnight. While it sounds doable on paper, school schedules and office meetings coupled with late night movies makes it very very difficult to adhere to πŸ™

Your clock is very celebrity like… πŸ˜‰

10 UmaS { 01.19.15 at 7:41 am }

Oh…I hate getting up before 7, but I had to get up by 5 for all those years I had to pack lunch for my girls. Now, packing lunch boxes is done with and so I can get up little late.
But still, I need to get up at least by 6, to get to work and its not a great feeling !!

11 andy drouin { 01.19.15 at 8:22 am }

I have trouble making it past 9:30 at night! But I also am not a morning person. Really, I just love sleeping! Too bad my life doesn’t support that – this working for a living keeps getting in the way.

12 Middle Girl { 01.19.15 at 8:23 am }

Most nights, since . . . forever, it seems, I am not asleep before midnight. Most mornings I am awake by 5 and up by 5:30. There is on occasion, a mid-morning, mid-day crash. But, once I fight through that, I’m good to go.

There have been exceptions, but the above it the rule.

13 Guera { 01.19.15 at 8:51 am }

It is painful for me to stay up late anymore. Ideally I would be up at 4am and in bed by 7:30. I get most of my work done early in the morning and start dragging by mid to late afternoon.

14 Working mom of two { 01.19.15 at 9:50 am }

Always been a night owl but not to your extreme. Used to feel somewhat lazy or guilty or something until I read a bunch of sleep books and then it was like oh, not my fault. But of course with kids plus always having had jobs that start at 8 or earlier I have had to adapt.

15 Catwoman73 { 01.19.15 at 10:00 am }

I’m definitely a morning person. I love the sunrise! And generally, I can’t stay awake much past 10pm. The interesting thing is that I’m a shift worker- I work rotating 12 hour shifts! I’ll bet I’m pretty scary when I’m seeing patients at 2am! Its a good thing that I’ve been doing this job a very long time, and I can do it without thinking all that much.

16 Jen { 01.19.15 at 10:05 am }

I’m definitely a night owl. Our family so far has three owls, one lark and one undecided (he’s only five months old but sleeps til 8am so I’m hopeful). The little lark often plays with the ipad at 6.30am waiting for the rest of us to come back to consciousness!

17 Kaeleigh { 01.19.15 at 10:09 am }

I usually go to sleep somewhere between 11pm and 1am and almost always awake between 630-830am, even without an alarm. I’m one of those freak people that only needs a good 5-6 hours of sleep to function.

18 loribeth { 01.19.15 at 10:09 am }

My parents (especially my mother) & sister are all night owls. With that and the time difference, I always have trouble keeping up when I’m there visiting. They will want to start a card game at 10 p.m. & I’m already half nodding off. Mom always said I was a morning person because I could get up at 5 a.m. & head off to work. I could DO it, but that didn’t mean I LIKED it. I am not particularly communicative until I’ve had some caffeine & looked at my email, lol. I always felt that I was a mid-morning person — I would hit my stride just in time for lunch, lol. Getting up so early meant I had to be in bed by about 10 (or I would suffer the next day).

Since being off work, I no longer have to get up at 5 a.m. (yay!). But it’s funny how often I still wake up at 5 or 6. After 25 years of the same schedule, I guess old habits die hard. Sometimes I manage to go back to sleep, sometimes not. I find we are generally getting up somewhere between 7:30 & 8:30, but we still usually go to bed around 10:30.

19 Isabelle { 01.19.15 at 10:24 am }

I find that when I am on vacation, I naturally get sleepy at around 11pm and get up at around 8:30. So it seems like I need to sleep 9.5 hours. During a regular work week, we go to bed at 10:30 and get up at 5:30am for fitness bootcamp. It’s very weird; if I sleep for eight hours, sometimes I get very sleepy when I wake up at 5:30. However, I usually feel awake if I have seven hours of sleep. It’s weird.

20 Liz { 01.19.15 at 10:33 am }

Night owl. On vacation with no engagements, I’m up at 11am and go to bed between 2 and 3 am. Alas, not how the working world works.

21 Debbie D. { 01.19.15 at 10:54 am }

Definitely a night owl here! It’s my most creative time. Like you, I’m pretty dozy until the afternoons.
Thanks for hosting the #MicroblogMonday link ups. This is my inaugural post. Have a good week. πŸ™‚

22 Corinne Rodrigues { 01.19.15 at 11:24 am }

We’ve started shutting down at 9.30 pm and waking up at 5.30 am, Mel. It’s hard but something we need to do to get an early start to our day. It’s only been a week. I’ll let you know how it’s working out! πŸ˜‰

23 Kasey { 01.19.15 at 11:38 am }

I think I really am a morning person, as much as I hate getting up in the mornings. But once I’m up I’m fully awake within 10-20 minutes and have a really hard time sleeping during the day even if exhausted (because the kids do NOT SLEEP). By 7:30 I’m done. I can maybe read a little, but I wind down to tv and by 10 I’m pretty much in bed. I’m wondering if when both kids start sleeping all night I’ll be able to wake up cheerful again as No Baby Ruth suggests. Because on a good day I get a million things done by 10 am.

24 Cristy { 01.19.15 at 12:31 pm }

We’ve just been talking about this. He-Beat and I have a similar internal clock, with both of us being early risers. She-Beat is like Grey and both would happily party to midnight and sleep in till 11 am. Makes for an interesting dynamic when everyone isn’t in sync with their schedules (hoping that we’ll get back to a point where it doesn’t matter soon too).

25 Lindsay | Solo Mama { 01.19.15 at 1:01 pm }

I’ve always been a bit of a morning person, but thanks to my child who likes to rise before the sun, my body is now accustomed to waking at 5 am. In fact, today she “slept in” until 5:45 but I was wide awake and ready to start the day (with coffee, of course) at 5!

26 m. { 01.19.15 at 2:43 pm }

Like Lindsay, my clock never skewed early, until D came along. Now I’m totally used to a 6 am start. And I think my clock ebbs and flows. I can tell you I am totally checked out between 3-5 pm daily, whether or not I eat lunch, regardless of whether I’m home or at work. If I could nap daily, I would.

27 Karen (River Run Dry) { 01.19.15 at 3:09 pm }

Skewed to the early morning, without fail. I’m best at 4am, and I need to be in bed by 8pm every night. My husband is more like you – nocturnal by nature, but our life, at least right now, is not conducive to it.

28 Jess { 01.19.15 at 3:11 pm }

Great question. It’s also funny with time zones, because my dad was always a night owl and was skewed from the norm when he lived in NY, but when he moved to L.A., he said it was like he belonged in that time zone. The three hour shift worked for him and he stayed adjusted to it. Interesting, huh?

For me, I always get later and later both at night and waking in the morning over school breaks, but because I teach middle school I have to function as an earlybird. I have meetings as early as 7:20 on a fairly regular basis. Which seems inhumane. But, I make it work, and when summer comes I have shifted to getting up naturally at 6:00ish, but I make short work of that. πŸ™‚ I don’t think I’d consider myself a night owl though.

29 DublinGal { 01.19.15 at 4:43 pm }

I’m somewhat of a morning person, I tend to be more productive in the mornings. But I hate getting up any earlier than 7am and if it were up to me, I would set my alarm clock for around 8am/8.30am. My husband is definitely a night owl and is more productive in the evenings for sure.

30 torthuil { 01.19.15 at 5:08 pm }

I was a morning person, but now with a baby I’m going to sleep between 10:30 and midnight (because that’s usually when she will settle for long sleep) and then waking up anytime between 9 and 10. I like to be awake in the afternoon. Am usually alert in the evenings though not always.

31 Laurel Regan { 01.19.15 at 7:57 pm }

I am most definitely NOT a morning person, and am very productive at night. Whenever I’m on an at-home vacation for an extended period of time I tend to fall into a natural routine of staying up until around 2 or 3 in the morning and sleeping until mid- to late morning. I wish I could do that all the time – though with my work day starting at 11 a.m. these days, plus working from home, it’s about as close to ideal as it can get!

32 TheStorkWhisperer { 01.19.15 at 8:33 pm }

I have never been a morning person and never will be but it’s amazing what you can get done before 9AM if you put your mind to it.

33 Queenie { 01.19.15 at 9:39 pm }

I prefer to sleep in, but I discovered years ago that if I go to bed by 10 and get up at 4, I am remarkably productive for those couple of hours, and there are no distractions, because no one else is awake.

34 Tara { 01.19.15 at 9:52 pm }

My clock has me up super early every morning. Even on the weekend when I don’t have to get up, my eyes usually open before 6am and I CURSE it! I would love to be able to sleep in on weekends. And of course with that, yes, I am usually in bed at a really early time. Anything after 10pm is living on the edge for me because no matter how late I am up… PING! Eyes wide open at or before 6am.

35 Lori Lavender Luz { 01.19.15 at 10:32 pm }

I’d most like to sleep midnight to 8 am.

36 Sharon { 01.19.15 at 10:50 pm }

Between the demands of work and my children, I’m not even sure anymore. When I was younger, I was definitely more of a night owl: I worked the 3pm to 11pm shift for quite a few years without any difficulties and felt good keeping those hours. But as I’ve gotten older and life has compelled me to rise early, I’ve grown accustomed to it, and nowadays I often find myself waking before 6:00am and being unable to go back to sleep.

37 Sharon { 01.19.15 at 10:51 pm }

Oh, and staying up late is out of the question for me these days: I can’t remember the last time I made it to midnight, and most nights I’m in bed and asleep before 10pm.

38 Jamie { 01.20.15 at 1:24 am }

Night owl for sure! Most productive and creative at night. πŸ™‚

39 StacieT { 01.20.15 at 3:04 am }

I am most productive late at night. I love it and always have. My clock would love it if I slept from 2/3 am until 10 am. Sadly, my job isn’t conducive to that schedule.

40 JustHeather { 01.20.15 at 7:17 am }

I can do mornings, but I would prefer my days to start a bit later than the average. I loved it when I could be at work at 9 or 10. And then I can naturally go to bed around midnight-ish and still get a decent amount of sleep.

41 Lindz { 01.20.15 at 8:55 am }

Like someone above, I’m a mid morning person. If I can get work to start at 10, then life is great. I can function on 6 hours sleep, so I can stay up a bit later with my night owl husband and still get up with the 3YO when she gets up at 8ish.

Problems happen on vacations/visits to my morning people parents who always get up at 6.

42 deathstar { 01.20.15 at 11:02 am }

I loathe mornings. Always have, always will. Morning people misconstrue this as laziness at times. It is not. In my early 30s, I functioned best when I woke up after 9:30, didn’t actually do anything til 11 and went out by 1pm. I was up at midnight, but was quite alert and happy. I’ve always loathed going to bed early despite any fatigue I might have. Vacation time to me is sleeping in, not talking to anybody for at least 1 hour after coffee. I used to complain that McDonanlds stops serving breakfast at 11am which seemed mean.

43 Journeywoman { 01.20.15 at 12:11 pm }

Night Owl.
My daughter is one too. So many of my friends say, “What? It’s 9:30 what is she doing awake?” I say, “You cannot legally do anything to make someone else fall asleep.”

44 Ana { 01.20.15 at 12:46 pm }

If left to my own devices, I’d settle on the 9-5. 9pm to 5am for sleeping, that is! I used to be much more of a night owl and could never make it to 8 or even 9 am classes, but as I age, I keep getting up earlier and earlier. Unfortunately, my husband is a night owl, so if are to have any sort of relationship, I have to stay up after 8:30 pm so I compromise and stay up a few nights a week so we can hang out.

45 Mrs T { 01.20.15 at 1:32 pm }

I’m an early riser but my preference is more 7 a.m. than early-early. For about the last year I’ve been waking up between 3-5a frequently & I really hate that. I started to suspect e-reader sleep disruption. Damn you, Kindle!

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