“Early as a lark” I find morning more productive, but working late as a “night owl” I am more creative: some thoughts on productivity and creativity.

Productive Larks and Creative Owls

“As a morning person, I’m generally more productive.
As a night person, I’m generally more creative.”
Tim Berry in Productive as a Morning Person, Creative as a Night Person

Which I hadn’t considered before, but felt exactly right when I read it. I find I always feel productive when I am awake and working by 7:30AM–which may help explain why I believe we have “serious conversations with serious entrepreneurs” at the 7:30AM Bootstrappers Breakfasts.

We tend to schedule our hard core work sessions for the morning and defer phone calls and errands for the afternoon, one of the benefits of running your own business.

Late at night I tend to blog, although I will sometimes not publish a post until I have reviewed it “in the clear light of day.” Some startups (and VC firms) we have worked with have a “no E-Mail after 10pm” rule as folks can become more carried away. It’s one I try to follow as well.

I submitted Tim Berry’s post on Hacker News and several folks commented, which led me to add some thoughts from that discussion as a postscript here:

  • In this context productive for me means “focused on closure” or “getting things done” and creative means “generating possibilities, exploring new approaches.” Obviously inspiration can strike at any time, and you have to find ways to get things done and even when you are not inspired.
  • I notice that when I get enough sleep I will sometimes spend the last dream of the morning solving (or at least advancing on a solution) to a problem I have been wrestling with.
  • My dead time is after lunch until early evening, I try and schedule phone calls and interaction with other people to renew my energy.

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