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Episode 017 – Why 5 AM is not for everyone


For me mornings are sacred, and I just love waking up gently and without rush to start my day, but I have always questioned the big movement to be up at 5am! The more research you do on the phenomena, the more shocked I was to hear that many successful people are up at 5am! So does that mean if we don’t wake up at 5am we wont be successful also?

Absolutely not, it doesn’t make you less ambitious or mentally strong, to be honest its not for everyone! And that is so ok!

So why get up at 5am?

Let us look at the reasons why people get up at 5am and how you can create a plan to fit the same into your routines. I feel like smug people wear their awake time like a badge of honour, boasting about how early they got up! There is an element of will power and mental strength involved in getting out of your bed in the morning, knowing that you are starting work. My philosophy is around small business creation being easy, so when did it become fashionable to make a to do list longer than your arm for the morning? If you are to believe all the hype, you are supposed to awake at 5am, journal, do yoga, take a cold shower, check your goals, drink a smoothie argh the list just goes on and on! This is not even taking into account if you have kids, and people wonder why women are so stressed and feel inadequate. This is all just ridiculous!

Habits & Routines

I discuss the importance of having great habits and routines to ensure you are successful in business, but you need to know your own limits and your own rhythm. Your own natural rhythm are the ebs and flows of your energy and cycle through the day and the week. Forcing yourself to be busy or to have a particular habit or routine is not in alignment with who you are as a person, so don’t force yourself. Yes there are times where you do need to change habits and routines, so please don’t get confused, if you are a morning person then great, but if you are not then please don’t force yourself.

Ultimately getting up at 5am will not make you successful.

Each one of you are unique and I don’t understand the fascination with observing others and dissecting their habits and believing that it will fit your lifestyle. There are many ways to achieve business success, living a happy and a fulfilled life!

Finding what works for you.

Finding your own sleep patterns is a great exercise you can complete, keep a diary for three weeks and every hour write down how you are feeling. Yes it can be tedious but it’s a great little project you can make of yourself. You should not impose too strict conditions on yourself while you are doing this, so that you can establish your own rhythm. Note your wake time and sleep time, pop notes in about how you are feeling at those times of the day and throughout. If you can try to avoid waking up to an alarm that would be great, but I am so aware with a family that its not always possible! The exercise is to help rule out all the hype and onerous to do lists that society seems to impose on us all.

Sleep quality is far more important than sleep quantity, we are obsessed with 8 hours sleep but some people need 6 hours where others need 10 hours, it all comes down to your sleep patterns and if you are getting good restorative sleep.

Self Project

Interesting for me when I did a project on myself I found that I have two time slots where I am super productive in the day, normally right before lunch and then again after dinner time. I honour my natural rhythm by scheduling all the important stuff before lunch that needs to be done with others, and work that I need to complete by myself I usually leave until after dinner.

Tackling the most important, most strategic work during my best time slots enables me to stay motivated, make steady progress, and avoid feeling overwhelmed. You don’t want to end up resenting the process and feeling like you have to work yourself to the ground. This is counterintuitive and will only lead to complete burnout.

During my peak times I make sure that I am not scheduling meetings focusing more on the strategic and difficult tasks as I know that I will accomplish more! Rest is also a big part of success, there are countless books and successful speakers in the world that advocate that driving yourself into the ground will not result in success. Take the time away from the task by going for a walk or focusing on something different. I don’t know about you, but my best ideas seem to come in the shower! I know that is because I have cleared my mind, giving my creativity space to do its thing.

Plan for success

Another factor in my days as a parent, wife and business owner is that I plan. I am super organised and it is a skill that evolves with you and your family. School bags are packed the night before, lunch is sorted by my husband, breakfast is discussed or prepared, all work clothes or uniforms are checked the night before so there is no mad rush in the morning and things falling apart.

The big push for a 5am start is to take advantage of “quiet time”, now quiet time does not mean that it has to be at 5am in the morning, it can also mean the later part of the day once everyone has clocked off for the day. You are in control of your work patterns, and the way you set boundaries with others will help them to understand how to work with you. This is not a one size fits all model

When you start working really does not matter and when you finish working again really does not matter, its what you do with the hours in between and how much you can accomplish in that time. The choices that you make must be logical and smart for you.

Are you lazy?

Often I hear that if you are not getting up at 5am then you are being lazy and wasting the day. I don’t believe that is true at all, and get very offended, I am not lazy and my clients who choose to operate on the later schedule are definitely not lazy, it’s a matter of picking up that productive time and simply moving it to the other end of the day. If you are sleeping excessively then yes maybe you should consider getting up earlier!

Waking at 5am is seriously right for some individuals and I applaud them for doing so, but for me and many other entrepreneurs I know, its not a great time to be awake. The whole craze about waking early is to find more time to be productive. If you take the opportunity to understand your sleep patterns, and learn about when you are most productive, then you never have to worry about waking up at 5am again!

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Meet Your Host

Carol Lange 

From a young age I have been surrounded by business success. Having formally studied a Double Degree of Bachelor of Commerce and a Bachelor of Management, this led to many successful opportunities.

I have been an employee for large accounting firms and international companies. I have run two highly successful businesses, becoming sought after in my industry internationally.

I have spoken nationally on the topic of money management and loved having the quiet coffee making radical changes for my clients. I am not a limelight chaser, just a quiet achiever looking to make a difference in the world.

Thankyou for joining me on the podcast, my dream is to inspire you to take action that will create a difference in your life! Dream no more and live the life that you have always wanted.