Wednesday, February 1

Are you a morning or evening person?

So what are you?

While I was growing up, my Ma used to din the old adage, early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy wealthy and wise. Consequently, I ended up late to bed, early to rise, unhealthy, poor and idiotic. The other comment which I kept on hearing was, “the early bird catches the worm”, when I inquired about the poor worm who really didn't benefit from waking up early, I got a clout around my head about being too smart. The fact that presumably the parental units wanted me to be smart was left unquestioned. Anyway, onwards and upwards.

But I have met so many people who are the either / or kinds of people. And as time goes on, i see more and more evening people than morning people. In other words, they are more comfortable in the evening and can keep on going for a long period of time, but speak to them in the morning and they will bite your head off or chew your ankles to bits. I am sure you have seen those.

So it was interesting when I read this paper. I quote the abstract:

Individual differences in morningness–eveningness are related to differences in personality. In this study of 1344 German adolescents, we used the Composite Scale of Morningness and the Portrait Values Questionnaire to assess the association between chronotype and personality values, controlling for age, puberty status, gender, problem perception in two dimensions (parents and self), and religious affiliation. Morningness orientation was correlated with higher acceptance of social values (conservation and self-transcendence) while eveningness orientation was correlated with higher preference for individual values (openness to change and self-enhancement). Girls were higher in self-transcendence while boys were higher in self-enhancement. Individuals with higher pubertal development preferred self-enhancement. Adolescents reporting problems with their parents preferred individual values while adolescents reporting problems with the self preferred conservation values. Religious affiliation also correlated positively with conservation. We interpreted the negative attitude of evening types towards social values as result of a cost-benefit consideration regarding early social schedules.

Fascinating, eh? There is definite and scientific basis behind whether or not you are a morning or evening person. If you are a morning person, then you are more traditional and can overlook your own individual needs while if you are an evening person, you are more liberal, open to change and more individualistic. More interestingly, girls are more societally oriented while boys are little shits – only interested in themselves. The authors say that the reason evening people are more individual is because of their sleep patterns as society expects early birds, so this “social jetlag” due to their evening circadian rhythms forces them to be more individual rather than social.


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