Do you spring out of bed in the morning, fresh with energy, ready to face the world, or is it a need to go to the bathroom that finally moves you?
Some people are morning types, others are night owls, but no matter to which camp you belong, there is a certain magic available to you in the first hour of the day.
You just need to know it’s there, and be ready to pursue it.
I think that for most people, the first hour of the day is less bothered by the worries of the day before. Certainly you aren’t free from your cares, your problems, you haven’t escaped them that easily, but for that first hour, or at least for a part of it, they remain remote. It takes being fully awake and aware for them to catch up to you.
This leaves you open to other experiences.
In general, I think, we take our mornings for granted, not so much because we’re unthinking or unfeeling, but because we’ve turned ourselves over to autonomy. It’s easier to brush teeth, wash faces, make coffee, go out for the paper—or whatever your ritual is—on automatic than it is to think about each step.
And this, my friends, is where the magic comes in.
Feel the water on your hands first thing. Body memory reminds you what water on hands is like, but those first moments under a tap can be special. They can take the automatic and make it purposeful. In fact, each part of your morning ritual can be brought forward into purpose, and with that, can be seen in a fresh way that you have likely not experienced in years.
Ah… I can hear the big “…so, what?” bubbling up. OK, fine. This process can be a “so what”. It can also be a “what’s so,” and in that become meaningful.
Meaning in washing your hands?
All right, it does sound a little odd. But consider this, of all the people you know, who would best benefit from taking the mundane steps of life and examining them closely? Hmm… I dunno. A psychiatrist, perhaps? A sociologist? Oh, wait! I know! You!
You, me, all of us, have a unique ability to see and experience that other people may never have. The mundane is just too… too, ordinary for most people. There is no magic in it… but for you, and for me? It’s a different STORY.
I was once sitting in my dining room when I lived in Santa Cruz (a beach town). I was talking to a dear friend—I don’t recall about what—but as we talked I noticed that the stick of incense I’d been burning was about to go out.
I had my friend stand up and join me. We faced the incense stick and I told her, “I bet I can show you something you have never seen before.” And I pointed.
“What?” She asked.
It could have been a foolish moment, but my friend was a writer too. She has reminded me more than once, in letters, that being shown that moment had a huge impact upon her. It wasn’t the extinguishing of the incense, so much, but the calling into being a moment she had not only never seen, but never considered.
Is there something in your morning ritual that might fit that bill?
Can you find magic in the first hour of your day?