January 2012

How to Be a Night Owl for Work

You could sing like the white-winged dove, or you could use these tips.

My best friend in the world, who is a total morning person who can’t stand staying up late past 10:00 (which also makes her opposite me, in some ways) has just discovered that she’ll have to work the night shift during her senior nursing shadowing. She also has her regular classes, plus a husband and a young child, to worry about, so it’s a stressful time for her.

She asked me to share with her some of my tips for being a night owl, but I have to confess that I think I’m naturally this way. I always sleep better in the daytime and write better at night; my most creative times of the day are typically between 4 PM and 3 AM. My mother was a night bird, too, and she used to let me stay up all night with her until I was too tired to go to bed (until I had to start school, that is). I would do crossword puzzles with her and watch Hill Street Blues and Star Trek when I was older, and I never really got into a regular nighttime sleep schedule. I’d do my best during the week and then sleep like a vampire, the way that felt natural to me, during the weekends.