4:30 AM WAKE UP!

I always get up by 4:30 AM every morning, including the weekends. My alarm clock is set for 4 AM, but my rule is that my feet must be on the floor by 4:30 AM. During the wintertime, I get up and mill about the house, eat my breakfast, watch the local news and weather, and then start my day at 6:30. Now that the temperature is a bit warmer in the morning, I can get my daily walk in before my day gets going.

For the last couple of weeks, I’ve been heading out for my daily walk at 5:30 AM. The early walk makes my day so much better. Recently I’ve enrolled in skillshare, and I work on my courses between 4:30 and 5. I watch about 15 minutes of news. Then get ready and go for my walk. This action increases the value of my day. I’m at work by 7 AM, and at 8 AM, I’m in a morning production meeting. This morning I was looking around and realized I’ve already crushed the day and these folks are just getting started; I wanted to jump up and scream, “AHHHHHH!” as I flipped over the table. No, not really, but it did make me realize the fruits of this discipline I’ve been practicing for the past year or so are beginning to reward me.

A year ago, today, if you had told me I’d enjoy getting up and walking before dawn, I’d thought, “yeah, right.” A year ago, if you’d told me I would be enjoying a skillshare course, I’d thought, “yeah, right.” And here is the big one, a year ago, had you told me I’d be blogging, I’d thought, “yeah, right.” It’s strange how your path turns out when you work on yourself with no intention but to try something new. Who knows where I’ll be in a year? I know on this path, it won’t be in the same place, and I’m cool with that.

With that said, I guess I’ll start my evening wind-down routine and look forward to what tomorrow may bring. If you get the chance, try something new. Try it for a while to see how it wears on you. It may just change you for the better.

My Every Day Walk

            Every day at 4:30, I go for a walk. It’s a decompression time for me. I try to let loose of the day. My walk is just under 2-miles. I walk the same route every day. As I walk, I see mostly the same people driving down the street. Many are winding their day down, just leaving work, or picking the kids up from school. Carrying out the mundane tasks of life. Today I took notice of the peoples’ faces as they drove by me. Many, so many, looked devoid of life. Like they are just over this journey. That’s a sad thing.

Photo courtesy of Justin Horrocks

            I’ll be the first to admit it this life sucks half of the time. It’ll beat you down and strangle the life out of you if you let it. There is so much negativity on the TV and radio. Then you have social media, and you find out your friend is getting divorced because their spouse has been unfaithful, and you’re like, “what!?” I thought they had it together. Then there’s a spot in the back of your mind that feels a little better cause you realize it’s not only you that sucks at this. It’s not right to feel that, but you do feel better.

            You know, I gave up my smartphone a few years ago and went back to a flip phone to be able to disconnect from that bombardment of information all the time. It became a burden with notifications, emails, and texts constantly. I feel like we, as humans, aren’t wired to process that much information constantly. It makes you depressed and filled with anxiety. I’m convinced that over-stimulation played a role in seeing so many lifeless faces driving down the street today.            

So, if you get a chance, go out and take a walk and enjoy the spring air. Leave the phone at the house and slip away from the onslaught of information assaulting your face. And while you’re on that walk, pick out those lifeless faces riding down the street, lend them a smile as they ride by. You may awaken a little bit of hope in their hopeless world.