Carpe A.M.

One of my favorite things in the world is lazy mornings. You know the type – you sleep in late, make coffee, and spend some time reading in your pajamas until you realize you probably should get dressed and start your day. Unfortunately, between work and school I don’t usually have the time to indulge in these blessed occurrences. But there is another solution: wake up earlier.

I know. Sometimes everything within me groans, hits snooze, and rolls over for a few extra minutes. But when I do manage to set the alarm early and actually get up when it tells me to, I find that the morning offers some unique opportunities the rest of the day doesn’t.

It’s quiet. One of my favorite things about being the first one up in the morning is sitting on my back porch when the air is cool and quiet. There’s something valuable about starting the day in peace rather than panic. I find that I approach relationships, work, and classes with a better attitude when I’m not on a frenzied time crunch to complete my morning routine.

It’s a great time to exercise. Trust me, I’ve had my fair share of skepticism on this one too. As a college athlete, I experienced more 6 a.m. practices and workouts than I would have liked. But, I came to appreciate their benefits. Not only do you eliminate the prospect of a workout hanging over you for the rest of the day, but working out early in the morning energizes you and wakes your brain up naturally. Plus, you get the satisfaction of checking something off your list before you head out the door.

It’s unclaimed. As a single person, you don’t have anyone asking for your attention or care first thing in the morning. Your early hours belong solely to you. I’ve found that this is a great time to spend in the Word, in prayer, or journaling. I’m free of distractions and also get to ground myself in God’s Word before starting my day.

It’s breakfast time. I’m no nutritionist, but I do love eggs, and I think everyone else should too. (Ask my roommates – my love language is making breakfast sandwiches and forcing food down their throats.) If you don’t share my passion for dairy, find a breakfast item you like and make time for it. You’ll need the nutrition after that satisfying workout!

Training your body to wake up early and be productive can be a hard thing, but it’s worthwhile. A wise friend once told me that having a regular quiet time “starts as discipline and turns into delight,” and I think that mornings are the same way. Let the discipline of rolling out of bed turn into the delight of making the most of your precious early hours.

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