Which Is the Most Productive Time to Work: Late Night vs. Early Morning

Anto Rin
Anto Rin
Jan 29, 2018 · 3 min read

Most people think of grinding hour by hour any work that may require of them to have complete focus — or that they have a personal passion in — during late in the night or well early in the morning. At least, the millennial generation is known to practice and live by this unruly schedule, now more so than ever.

But setting aside all that go “by practice”, an underlying fact is that it’s the way we are wired. For some reason, even contrary to the quality of our mindset, we can effectively produce more during some parts of the day, and not feel much like it during others.

For example, if you are a writer, and hope to grind much of what you can in a short period of time, the best strategy to use will be to make it the same short period everyday.

That way you can get your mind used to what’s in the norm.

But what sets the “grinding hour” late in the night, or early in the morning?

Sure enough, it can be influenced by the balance you have with your environment — the more time and energy you have to give for your day job, the more you are pressured into choosing a specific time period to set your other priorities.

But mostly, it is something inherent — you are either someone who is pretty active during nights, or days. If you are both, you are exceptional (although I’d advise you about nervous breakdowns). If you are neither, you are screwed. You also have to understand that “inherent” could mean that you are attracted to spending your late-night or early-morning grind for few activities more than others:

More so for writing an article than preparing for an exam. More so for reading a novel, watching a movie, swinging to music than doing something you may consider physically and psychologically overexerting.

But the important point is to have a consistent habit, and it doesn’t matter if you sleep late or rise early. You have to be able to harvest whatever you can from the “silence” that is usually characteristic of such odd times of the day.

Research shows you become the most productive during times that you think are the best to work.

Whatever you may hear from others is the best time of the day to be productive, it’s you who has to measure up to finding it convenient.

For instance, just because great people begin their day precisely at 3.30 in the morning doesn’t mean you have to too. If rising early doesn’t work for you, the best way to keep your output consistent is to have your own time.

There is nothing wrong with not being able to be as consistent during the day as you are during nights, and vice-versa.

The stereotype that we can work our best if we are able to sacrifice a bit of our sleep is partially true. What matters is having the same work-periods everyday so that you can work beyond any complacence of proficiency — because consistency then becomes a part of the complacence.

The fact that it happens to be late in the night — or early in the morning — is mere coincidence.

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