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You never want to get up & go to work do you? Even on the weekends when there is no work, you still don’t want to get up & actually leave bed. I’ve worked jobs that I loved, I’ve done things that I loved, both required waking up & getting out of bed & I can honestly say I never wanted to do it.

That might make me someone that isn’t a morning person. Both my boss & her epidemiologist claim to be “morning people.” I have serious doubts about that term. I don’t think “morning people” are real. I think, in all honesty, the term is a construct to make people feel better about themselves.

I am so not a morning person.
I am also not an afternoon person.
I might be a night person…but only when I’ve been drinking.

I say this because of college. I worked full time through college & took side jobs to help pay for school. Tuesday & Thursday, because of work, were my school days. They started at six in the morning & they often ended around midnight. Most of the time, I was waking up at around 4:30 of 5:00 to get to school on time.

The rest of the week I worked 11-7. Save the weekends when I worked 8-5.

That is a really big flux in wake up times. 4:30, 10:00, 7:00.

It could be that after years of that, you just learn to sleep & wake up when you have to. It could also mean that no one is a “morning person.” After years of that, it becomes habit. Over the summer, if I didn’t have classes, the first few weeks I was waking up before the sun would rise.

That really pissed me off.

Like I said, you never want to get out of bed & when you wake up super early like that, on a day you could otherwise sleep in, you sort of hate yourself a little.

Damn it! Now I’m up!

The very next thing you do is put on a pot of coffee & take a shower so you can hate the fact you’re up by staying up.

It is like this job. I have to get up super early for it…well, I have to get up super early compared to my last job, which was working the night shift as a security guard, in a school. That job I wok up a little before the alarm went off at noon. This job I wake up a little before the alarm goes off at six.

There is a big difference between 6AM & 12PM. For those of you keeping score, that is the difference between a “morning person” & everyone else.

The first week of that transition sucked. I had moved back in with the parents, I got home from work & would go straight to bed.

“He’s not used to real work,” they would say.

No, I am used to real work, I’m NOT used to working a morning shift again. It took about a week to make the transition.

Before that job it was the dental company, while in the office it was 6:30-4:00. When not in the office it was a schedule dictated principally by flight times. It was dictated by departures & arrivals & meetings & trade shows.

That job is another reason why “morning people” aren’t real. I know this better than most, I have traveled extensively for work & for pleasure. At the dental company about 60% of my job was travel.

You meet a lot of other people that do a lot of traveling. They are either always tired or always awake. There is no in between. The ones that are always tired are always tired on the road & long for the adjustment back to a stable time zone. The ones that aren’t seem like they are on speed until they get home, & then sleep for an entire day.

It is either messing with time zones gets you so tired you can’t operate normally or messing with time zones messes you up to the point where you don’t notice how tired you are. I’d fall into the latter. I know that for a fact. The day I got home I was still all energy, the day afterwards I could burn to death, in my sleep, with every alarm in the apartment going off & a marching band doing laps around me & I wouldn’t know it.

In either way, jobs that take you from Chicago to Seattle to New York to Huston to Orlando to Munich to Boston to LA to Toronto & back to Chicago in one wall of travel vouchers kills any concept of “morning person.”

Before that job, I had a few temp jobs, three months on & then you are let go. Those jobs didn’t give you a solid schedule. You worked when they told you to. One day you worked the night shift, the next you worked the morning shift. Night shift, afternoon shift, morning shift. With those jobs, you could work twenty-four hours, doing two shifts back-to-back, & the only people that weren’t exhausted all the time where the managers on a fixed schedule.

You wake up when you wake up. “Morning people,” there is nothing special about them. They are people that went to bed earlier than the non morning people, on a sleeping schedule that hasn’t changed for a long time.

What “morning people” are are “regular sleepers.” Usually regular sleepers that don’t have enough of a life to break their biorhythm.

“I am early to bed & early to rise because I have a job that has the benefit of regular sleep & routine.” That should be the better term than “morning person.” Trust me, I’ve been there, you’re whatever your schedule makes you.

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