I am living in luxury: BMW edition.
"Why do you get up at the butt-crack of dawn?"
This is a good question and the answer is quite simple. The answer is not what I can do, rather it is what I can find at the "butt-crack of dawn," (as you might say) that can rarely be found at any other time. The answer: nothing.
Yes, before my mind is filled with the buzzing of the world, before this side of the earth begins to awaken from its slumber, I am able to find this scarce phenomenon known as nothing. So, now the questions bears down, “What are you suppose to do with nothing?” or even better, “Could you not find something more productive to do?”
I have just recently started playing with this idea, so I do not have an answer to that question. I do not have some end result that I can share from my experience. However, I can tell you what I plan to do with my little chunk of nothing every morning. It can be explained and remembered in a happy-coincidence acronym: BMW.
Taking care of your body is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. You do not exercise just to maintain weight, or physically strengthen your body, though these are huge benefits of regular exercise. Our bodies were meant to move. They crave for it. Physical exercise helps prevent diseases, even the big ones like cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. It increases your stamina and helps your body age at an appropriate rate. Here is one of the best reasons, it improves the quality of life. Studies have shown that once you begin to exercise regularly, it reduces stress, lifts moods, and helps you sleep better.
If you could spend an hour every day doing anything that promises these kind of results, wouldn't you be first in line? The reason most people don’t exercise is they fail to see results. The reality is, the results go far beyond what you can simple see in a mirror. For these reason I have dedicated an hour every morning to work on my body, paying attention to its needs and treating it as a gift, not a privilege.
I would argue that along with your body, your mind is the most important thing to keep in shape. Now, when I am discussing mental health, I am not referring to chronically disabling nature of depression and other common mental disorders. Rather, I mean in keeping the mind sharp and equipped.
Or as Peter would say in 1 Peter 3:15: “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give a reason for the hope that you have.”
I find myself, at least in one sense, agreeing with Karl Barth when he said that “One should preach with the Bible in one hand and the newspaper in the other.” I want to be strengthened by the Words of God, but also knowledgeable of the world by which I live.
Plus, you should never cease in learning. Any entrepreneurial advice will tell you this. Learning boosts confidence, it keeps you fresh with other opinions and ideologies that you might not have considered, and it continues your development. It’s not about knowing all the facts or being the smartest guy in the room, but about building a stronger foundation of relevance to the world and understanding of humanity’s relationship with its Creator. For this reason I have dedicated an hour every morning to spend reading and listening to inspirational words of the Bible and informative words of my fellow human.
Finally we reach the final portion of our fun acronym. Writing is an marvelous path towards expression, reflection and even healing. In fact, studies have shown that writing down your thoughts and feelings after a traumatic event can actually make physical wounds heal faster.
When many attempt to envision a writer they imagine a quirky recluse, hunched over a desk in some cabin, crumpled paper strewn about as they obsessively work on the next great American novel. Writings does not always have to take on this shape, though.
Once a week I try to get something written down and I have multiple platforms that I use. Sometimes I desire to put pen to paper so I write a couple thoughts in my daily planner I carry around. Other days, I write a note in my spiritual journal or develop an idea for a new blog post. There are so many ways to write, and even more things in our life to write about.
Early in the morning is a great time for me to allow my creative juices to being flowing through me. I am not bogged down with distractions, the house is completely silent, and every once in awhile I'll wake up with some idea that I cannot wait to write down. I challenge you to pick up the habit of writings at least weekly. What you will find is your memory will sharpen, your ability to reflect on current events will be second nature, and overall you will be a happier person.
What do I do bright and early every morning? Not much more than I can do anytime of the day. The trick is that I embraced the time of nothing and used it to its fullest potential. If you you can find ways to implement good BMW rituals into your day, I can gaurtunteed you will live a more productive and fullfilling liufestyle.