Night Owls V/S Early Birds: Who Is Better?

Last Update on November 23, 2021 : Published on November 23, 2021
night owl Vs early bird

Key Points

  • There are three types of chronotypes which are classified by the preferred sleeping pattern (morning, afternoon and night)
  • Morning and night are the most common chronotypes
  • Night owl (night)- most active in the later hours of the day
  • Early birds (morning)- most active in the initial hours of the day
  • Circadian rhythm plays a role in determining your preferred sleep timing
  • You can make an effort and switch to a different chronotype if you wish to

Many of us call ourselves an early bird or a night owl but do we know the real meaning of these two terms? If you stay awake late in the night, in a conversation you might address yourself as a night owl and if you prefer waking up early you’ll address yourself as an early bird.

It all depends on your sleeping pattern that is classified into the said categories. The question here is does the difference in sleep pattern make any difference at all? I have always wondered being a night owl myself, should i change my sleeping pattern?

Is it better to be a night owl or an early bird? Let’s find out…

What Is The Meaning Of Being A Night Owl Or Early Bird?

Let’s understand the actual story behind being a night owl and an early bird. We all belong to a certain chronotype and our chronotype decides whether we’ll be a night owl or an early bird.

There are three chronological sleeping patterns

  • Morning chronotype
  • Afternoon chronotype
  • Night chronotype

These three chronotypes actually determine who you are going to be. Morning chronotype and night chronotype are the most common. The afternoon chronotype is rare. People who fall in the morning chronotype category are called early birds and the night chronotype category is known as night owls.

Also read: Why Am I Always Sleepy? | 12 Reasons You Might Be Fatigued (And What To Do About It)

How can I know which chronotype I belong to?

To know which chronotype you belong to you just have to complete a simple task. All you have to do is switch off all your alarms and avoid looking at the watch that day. You can ask a friend to keep a check on the time.

Now, do your usual stuff and go to sleep whenever you feel sleepy and wake up naturally without any kind of alarm. Ask your friend to tell you what time you slept and when you woke up. That will be your natural chronotype.

Also read: The Sleep Hormone: Melatonin! Can It Be Bad For You?

Characteristics Of An Early Bird and A Night Owl

Who is an Early Bird? Who is a Night Owl?
Wake up early Wake up late
They love the morning sun and birds chirping Morning light irritates then and birds should have a mute according to them
Early birds go to bed early They go to bed late
They work best in the morning They are tired upon waking up but function best in the late hours of the day
Energy decreases by the evening and almost lose all energy by night It’s difficult for them to stay alert during the day

Night Owl V/S Early Bird| Who Is Better?

a night owl

Most people think that being a night owl is certainly not the better kind to be. But it’s nothing like that. You must get a proper amount of sleep, that’s important not the time of sleep. Being a night owl is certainly not bad.

Having said that, being a night owl does bring some disadvantages with it. Only because our society functions in such a way that being an early bird is beneficial. Jobs are 9- 5, schools and other necessities are active during the day. Night owls often lack energy during the most actively functional time of the society.

Night owls are also at a higher risk of worsening their mental health conditions. Other than these, being a night owl is perfectly fine.

Also read: I Don’t Feel Like Sleeping: Understanding Revenge Bedtime Procrastination?

An early bird

An early bird is mostly functional in the day and by evening they do not have energy to do anything at all. Since we all work during the day and our recreational time is the evening and night time, early birds often skip family or recreation with friends because of lack of energy.

Being an early bird doesn’t really have much of a disadvantage baring the lack of energy after noon time. I would leave it for you to decide which one is better because if your sleep pattern is not interfering with your daily function then I think both will work just fine.

Pros And Cons Of Being A Night Owl/Early Bird

Night owl


  • Night owls are more intelligent
  • They have more stamina
  • They are productive


  • At a higher risk of depression
  • Struggle with non-work activities
  • Useless during the day

Early bird


  • Utilize the day to the fullest
  • They are more proactive
  • Their overall health is better than the night owls


  • Even an early bird need an energy booster in the morning to completely wake up
  • They require more sleep

Well, now it’s for you to choose! Who is better? A night owl or an Early bird? Do comment and let me know if you are a night owl or an early bird and do you feel like you’re lacking something?

I hope you enjoyed reading the blog. Be it a night owl or an early bird, until you are fit and healthy, everything works. Make sure your sleep pattern is not putting you in any trouble.

Thanks for reading.

Take care and stay safe!

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About The Author

Kirti Bhati
Kirti Bhati

I am an English literature (major) and psychology (minor) graduate from St. Bede’s College, Shimla. Postgraduate in Clinical psychology from IIS University, Jaipur. She has published a Research paper on Music therapy in the military population and Workplace stress in a national seminar conducted by Fortis hospital (gurugram) and international seminar conducted by St. Bede’s College, Shimla, Respectively. Authored a dissertation work on ‘effect of social media addiction on the mental and physical well-being in adolescents’ Currently working at calm sage as a writer.

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