For years, I was a person who believed I had the power to control my body and was not going to be bullied by sleep. I didn't need eight hours of sleep, and nobody -- pardon the pun -- was going to tell me that I needed to go to bed at a regularly time, or at all. 

I never grew out of being eight years old.

Then something wonderful happened. I discovered the miracle of eight hours of sleep and a sleep routine and saw every aspect of my life improve. And I am not alone, as business leaders to celebrities now advocate for everything from eating healthy to sleeping naked to maximize the value of your sleep.

There is also mounting evidence that shows how you wake up can have benefits to your body and mind as well as your pocket book. TheSleepJudge.com conducted a survey of 1,063 Americans (573 female and 486 male, average age of 37) and compared "those with established morning habits to those who approached mornings more casually" to determine if there was a correlation between morning routines and increased earnings.

Overall, the survey found that individuals who stuck with a consistent morning routine earned roughly $12,500 more per year than those without them.

Here are some of the morning routines and how they seemed to correlate to higher incomes.

What time you wake up also might make a difference. Business Insider reported that professionals earning six figures are more likely to wake up before 6 a.m. In his book, Rich Habits -- The Daily Success Habits of Rich Individuals, author Thomas C. Corely studied 177 self-made millionaires for five years and found that nearly 50 percent woke up at least three hours earlier than the start of their workday.

For certain, getting up early is not for everyone. Fellow columnist, Minda Zetlin, writes about why getting up super-early can actually do you more harm than good. As I sit here at 4 a.m. by accident, unable to to sleep, I can see her point. This is not for everyone.

Whether you wake up in the middle of the night, or the fact that the sun comes up before noon is news to you, the important takeaway is that you should find a consistent rhythm and routine for your sleep and your morning rituals, so that for the remainder of the day you can stay healthy, maintain energy, and make progress toward your goals.