For many years in my life, the words “glorious” and “mornings” did not belong together. My mornings were rushed and exhausted. Each weekday morning began as late as possible, while still allowing me to get to work on time. Weekends I slept in, trying to catch up on missed sleep from the week. Weekends and weekdays all got started on the wrong foot. The sad thing is that I didn’t really think that there was anything I could do about it.
Years ago I drew a line in the sand and changed my ways. I came to realize that most of my problems in the morning stemmed from the night before. Too many nights filled with mindless TV, social media, surfing the web, extended workdays or gaming. Then I went to bed way too late because I was so desperate for “me” time. I was so tired from hard days that I “wound down” in ways that sabotaged my morning possibilities. Glorious mornings were crushed by wasted evenings.
Mornings have the possibility of becoming glorious when we allow enough time that we don’t feel rushed. With unrushed mornings we can relax, we can think, we can pray, we can breathe. When we allow ourselves the space to make a morning glorious, the morning freshness seeps into the rest of the day. With a rested spirit, the frustrations of the day are a little less frustrating. Less frustrating days mean less exhausted evenings. Soon, glorious mornings become glorious days.
It all sounds so easy, but I know from experience that changing longstanding habits is really hard. Life with children and demanding jobs that begin early make early morning routines challenging. For each person, the path toward better mornings is different. For almost everyone, better mornings lead to better days. Here are a few practical suggestions. Pick the ones that work for you.
- Be rigid about going to bed at a time that allows you enough sleep to get up early without being exhausted.
- Have a cutoff time for technology each night. The app Freedom will automate this habit for you.
- Reduce your reliance on TV, social media, gaming, and surfing the Web as the only ways to relax.
- Be creative with your precious mornings. Enjoy reading, praying, journaling, being in nature, uplifting music. Avoid formulas that become ruts. Find life and seek God.
I am convinced that years of experiencing glorious mornings will do more to transform our heart and our character than almost any other habit we can practice. It will likely take a while to find the groove of less wasteful evenings and more enriching mornings. Persist in the effort and reap a lifetime of reward.
How are your mornings?