Infographic: The best time of day to write—according to science

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Knowing whether you’re a morning person or night owl can help you optimize your creativity, but research says dopamine-boosting activities will help even more. Here’s what that means.

By Kristin Piombino | Posted: November 8, 2015
Most of us are on the seemingly endless hunt for the perfect time of day to write—that magical period when ideas naturally spring up, words flow and our attention is undivided.

As we know too well, perfect circumstances rarely come about.

An infographic from QuickSprout aims to help us find that enchanted time—through science.

Though most of us identify as either morning people or night owls, research says other factors, such as dopamine levels and how distracted we are, have the biggest effect on our creativity.

You will be most creative when your dopamine (a neurotransmitter that controls the brain’s reward and pleasure centers) and distraction levels are high, the infographic says. That’s why so many people claim to come up with their best ideas while they’re running, driving or taking a shower.

Download this free white paper to discover 10 ways to improve your writing today.

When it comes to putting those ideas into words, the infographic reveals why people are most creative either in the morning or evening. Take a look:

Why it’s best to write in the morning:

  • We have the most willpower when we wake. Willpower is a limited resource that is typically lowest in the evening.
  • We’re at our most creative in the morning. The analytical parts of our brains don’t kick in until we’ve been up and moving for a while.
  • It’s easier to make writing a daily habit. Because we have more willpower in the morning, it’s an ideal time to train yourself.

Why it’s best to write in the evening:

  • There are fewer distractions. People are less likely to bother you after traditional work hours.
  • You aren’t rushed. Because you don’t have to worry about being late for work or appointments, you can relax while you write.
  • You can pull from the day’s events. Your experiences from the day can inspire your writing.

Are you more creative in the morning or evening?

Check out the infographic for more scientific insights:

(View a larger image.)

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