If you are active on social media and follow me, you may know that I get up particularly early. Mind you, not all of the time. It’s whenever the notion takes me, so to speak. And then I’m asked what do I do at four or five in the morning. Honestly, sometimes you’d think it was a kind of crime! But whatever mindset we have, I know that to some it sounds ridiculous to get up in what could be described as the middle of the night. And if you think like that, could it be that you don’t know what you’re missing?
So, I’ll tell you. Firstly, you feel as if you are the only human being on the planet. That’s a good feeling because it means you have no distractions. And that in turn means you can get deep inside your mind in a calm and peaceful way before all those frenzied, jarring thoughts of a normal day attack you. You don’t need traffic reports at this stage because you’re going nowhere and anyway, you’ve cut a steal on the traffic reporters because they’re still in a sleep-filled oblivion. You don’t bother with the news because it will be repeated again and again later on in the morning. There’s just you and whatever aspect of the life around you that you choose to focus on.
And for me that’s nature. Now it may not be everybody’s cup of tea, especially for you city guys. But even if you live in a city or a town, you may have a garden or a balcony. Or there’s always the front door. And that’s where I head. I stick my nose out, even if it’s raining. I breathe in a big gulp of fresh country air. I look up at the dark sky searching for a crack of light that will herald the start of the dawn. I wait for the birds to sing me a few bars. And I just think how damn lucky I am; how lucky I am to be able to walk to the door, unlike last month when my knee caved in temporarily. I think how many others of you are out there who can’t perform that simple task. And how many others still who take it for granted.
And acknowledging that simple ability means that you are developing a sense of gratitude. Yes, Gratitude with a capital G. There’s nobody listening who hasn’t felt that warm glow about them when they say thanks for something they were given. Do you know what I mean? Yes. You do.
That sense of gratitude is my first prayer of the day. And it is a kind of prayer. I just don’t do the formal, traditional ones. You could also say it’s a kind of meditation. Call it what you like. But for me it’s an early morning practice, which, on the days that I do it, warms the cockles and gently eases me into another day.
Give it a go!