Early Birds Happier Than Night Owls

It's true regardless of age: study

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted Jun 12, 2012 5:10 PM CDT | Updated Jun 16, 2012 8:20 AM CDT

(Newser) – Morning people, count yourselves lucky: New research shows you're happier, and feel healthier, than your night-owl peers—not just in the morning, but in general. People tend naturally to rise earlier as they get older, which might explain why older people tend to be happier, researchers say. Their study surveyed two groups, one made up of people ages 17 to 38 and another whose members were 59 to 79, LiveScience reports.

Researchers found that most become morning people by age 60; by that time, just 7% of people are still night owls. In contrast, only 7% of young adults are early birds. Overall, older folks reported being happier, a scientist says, and "'morningness' was associated with greater happiness emotions in both age groups." It's unclear why, but it may have to do with the fact that our "social clock"—typical work hours, for instance—is structured in a way that favors morning people. Still, hope isn't lost for night owls who want to make the switch: Click through for tips on becoming a morning person.

Morning people tend to be happier overall, a study finds.
Morning people tend to be happier overall, a study finds.   (Shutterstock)
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