Since I was a child, an early bedtime wasn’t appealing. I would climb into bed and stare at the ceiling, bored. Although I woke up early, I wasn’t tired enough to fall asleep before midnight most nights. As I grew older, I didn’t feel like such an outsider when I found out it was pretty normal for certain individuals to stay up late regularly. These people were referred to as night owls and soon I identified as such.

As much as I wish I was, I’m not naturally a morning person. This isn’t to say I hate waking up early. I will if I have to but I prefer not to. During the day I’m surrounded by people, especially living in New York City, and it can sometimes feel as if I don’t even have any personal space. Being an introvert also contributes to my desire of having alone time after long days, and the night is the perfect time for this.

I’m a person of routine and the night isn’t an exception. I come home, take a warm shower (yes, even in the summer), climb into bed, and have my alone time. Everyone is usually asleep before midnight at home. My entire family has become accustomed to my night owl habit because I’ve been one for years. Night time means uninterrupted time to go online, watch a romantic comedy or a documentary, catch up on shows, listen to music, and get work done.

Using late hours to complete schoolwork is the priority during the semesters. I can completely focus on the task at hand and delve deep into thought without having to stop for anyone. But even when there’s work to do, I make sure to have at least 30 minutes before sleeping to watch YouTube videos or Netflix shows to unwind a bit.

I’m a proud night owl who doesn’t feel lonely when everyone is asleep and I’m the only one up. I finally get my “me time” to do whatever I please without having to entertain anyone. Despite the personal benefits of being a night owl, it seems morning birds are praised more. People believe those who start their days early achieve more but that’s not necessarily true. It really depends on how we use our hours.

Studies have shown that people who sleep late might actually have a higher IQ and are more creative than those who don’t. So if you’re part of the team, don’t let yourself be put down by early birds because there are benefits to being either one. Besides, night owls have their own club, and the president himself loves to stay up late.