How do you wake up in the morning? Are you an early riser or more of a mid-morning or almost-midday person in this season? Our work schedule and daily duties often influence our sleep pattern and wake-up routine.
Our lives may have different variables. A night guard, fire service operator, auditor or gas station attendant is likely to have a different work life and sleep rhythm from someone who works 9-5. Not always – but often.
For the most part, each of us does what we can to map our 24hr day and take care of our responsibilities.
As a former artistic insomniac, I’m coming to have a healthier understanding of the value in how we greet the day…but more importantly, how we react when the day doesn’t begin on the note we expected it to.
When days don’t begin on a note that we like, it doesn’t mean we have to give up on the rest of the day or let a tough start drain our daily joy.
For years now – most of my adult life in fact, I’ve happily woken up early in the morning without an alarm. (Stay tuned; the story takes a bit of a twist shortly.) How we wake up matters. Quiet mornings can be absolutely serene and I figure all of us prefer not to be jumped or startled out of sleep, right? That feels like treating the day itself like a threat. Maybe you too have had some challenging days and seasons like that, but who would choose to have a heavy morning if it were totally up to them?
Alarms come in handy especially if we’ve gone to bed late, but even the name of the thing raises a red flag – A.L.A.R.M. What’s the purpose or cause for alarm? Gotta get to work – gotta be somewhere – gotta do something – starting right now! I figure most diligent and devoted parents, athletes, and teachers would find it extremely challenging to set about the tasks of the day without one, and understandably so.
If you’re an early morning workout person, you already know an alarm is helpful to keep on schedule and stay disciplined. Or you might set one to carve out purposeful quiet time for yourself before anyone else in the house/apt. wakes up. Maybe you have a determined pet and don’t need an actual alarm clock or notification to wake you up. While these little beeping and singing gadgets are helpful to wake us up, please remember that you’re not a robot. Daily joy is up to you. Above all, it’s not an alarm that wakes us up; it’s the Most High. An alarm only triggers our ears and brain, but the purpose of our day has a heavenly plan.
I remember a morning when I was woken up – to mix cement. Yes, mix cement – and like ‘all now’ – urgently, before the workman arrived when the sun was actually shining. I mumbled my first words for the morning, washed my face and shuffled through the quiet house, barely making an effort to schloop my unwilling 6 and 1/2 size feet into chilled slippers and head outside.
First, I had to learn how to even mix cement with a shovel (props to all the construction workers out there!), then be taught how to use the tools correctly for that application – then apply muscles that hadn’t yet woken up, and finish the work in time. There was no staged heroic-looking photoshoot (wearing a ‘cute’ outfit) for Instagram so others across the globe could cheer on and post comments like “oh how cool and how strong!” – or “you go girl!”
Nope, just me – hair frizzy and wearing a pair of beige cargo pants and some miscellaneous top or another. Those first few minutes mixing that house-porridge were – “un-fun”…and then something happened. I committed to the work and began enjoying the movement and responsibility. After all, the whole purpose of mixing cement was to build something – a studio apt. within walking distance of the beach on the south coast of Barbados, to rent out.
We can be thankful, both when it’s quiet and while we’re hard at work.
I didn’t plan for that particular kind of morning, but received a wake-up call along with an assignment which came at a time that challenged my obedience and willingness to work when I would have preferred to take it slow.
Does that happen to you sometimes? How do you cope when days don’t start the way you’d like?
Here’s hoping for willingness to be present and flexible when called to step up before we think we’re ready. And here’s to learning how to be grateful regardless of what note the day starts on.
If you have a life rhythm that does require an alarm, how about being gentle with yourself and choosing a peaceful yet effective wake-up call…because you matter, and those you encounter throughout the day do too.
Thanks for taking the time to read, and have a beautiful day.
On that note, how did your morning start (and hopefully bloom) today?
Shared with love,
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