You’ve heard about the 5am club, and that all successful people do it, but is there any truth behind it? For some (me), waking up before the sun rises sounds like an ungodly punishment, so I set out to uncover the truth – and the myths – behind this blaring trend. Stick around here to uncover if and how waking up at 5am can make you more successful. 

Where Did This All Come From

From Apple CEOs, to Vogue editors, to business leaders like Richard Branson and Jack Dorsey, all these incredibly successful leaders are doing it. So, should we?

“Join The 5 a.m Club. Your most valuable hours are 5am-8am. They have the least interruptions.” – Robin Sharma

The concept of waking up early has been around for some time, but it wasn’t until Robin Sharma wrote The 5am Club that it really solidified its place in modern society. The author of The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari began working on the concept when he saw the incredible results that waking up early were having on his clients. The book is written in a narrative form, but the concept (and real life results) remain the same. The author has sold over 15 million books internationally, so we can agree that he probably knows what he’s talking about.

What’s The Big Deal?

The mornings are when our energy levels are at their highest (makes sense as we just built them up while sleeping) so using them to our best advantage is a blessing. As working humans, we tend to allocate our spare time to the evenings, after work when we’re looking to wind down from the day. The concept of the 5am club is to reallocate your spare time to the mornings, when we are naturally more productive and efficient, and use that time to work on something that drives you, be it a side hustle, your own business, exercise, etc.

Another key factor and one that’s hard to argue with is the peace and quiet. There’s no denying that being up before anyone else means no phone calls, no emails, no text messages demanding our attention and sapping our focus. These early hours of the morning are generally quiet and can be the most focused hours of the day. 

Another advantage is using this time to do whatever you please – remember it’s still your “free time”. It is a brilliant way to reconnect with your priorities and do productive things that speak true to you – without the frantic rushing and weighted pressure. The idea here is to spend the time focusing on important rather than urgent matters. 

Waking up early also has another significant advantage – you’ll never be late again! Having the time to properly shower, groom, get dressed, and eat, you’ll find breakfast-on-the-run (or no breakfast at all) a thing of the past. Glide into your day with your best foot forward knowing that you’ve done more than most, and at a leisurely pace. (Can we count deserved smugness as a pro here?)

Ok, But What Do The Scientists Say?

A study from the University of Toronto, published in the Emotion journal, found that people who wake up earlier, versus people who sleep in, are both happier and healthier. They further concluded that rising earlier sets our biological clocks to a more favourable schedule and brings an overall sense of higher satisfaction to their lives. 

Biologist and professor at the University of Education in Heidelberg, Christoph Randler, conducted a study which proved all the benefits of waking early to be true. “When it comes to business success, morning people hold the important cards. Morning people anticipate problems and try to minimize them. They’re proactive. Many studies have linked this trait, proactivity, with better job performance, greater career success, and higher wages.”

According to Randler, the early bird does get the worm.

Tried and Tested Benefits From 5am Club Members

Science aside, let’s take a look at some of the benefits pitted against the downfalls.

how waking up at 5am can make you more successful

Ready To Jump Into The Fast Lane?

No? That’s ok too. It’s up to you to decide whether you’re going to give up those Sunday lie-ins (and the Saturday all-nighters) in favour of being a “happier, healthier, and more successful” human being. While the process is meant to make you more successful, more confident and an all round more stellar human, if you’re not into waking up at 5am – don’t do it. Sometimes it’s just good to get the facts.