As you know, my day starts with planning the night before. However, when I realize God has granted me another day of life each day I have an agenda that starts far before my feet touch the floor.
Rise. Pray. Meditate. Be epic. Repeat.
Those of you that have been following me for at least 3 years know that this is my daily mantra. It was inspired in part by the hashtag #beepic by Dr. Steve Perry, and a post by my friend Mary about not being basic. In 2015 as I was forging through pranayama training I created a spiritual regimen to help realign my life to my dreams and hopes. When I attempted to simplify in words what I do I came up with Rise. Pray. Read. Meditate. Be epic. Repeat.
It took some time for all of this all to be a natural part of my morning regimen. I struggled at first. So, I set reminders. Yes! I set reminders in my phone. Now, some folks think that reminders are cheating; that one should be moved in such a way that reminders are not necessary. I cannot disagree more!
Reminders do not make us any less driven. They do not take away from the experience or fluidity. They in fact do the opposite. Until any routine behavior becomes natural, reminders of all kinds are very beneficial. I can’t tell you how many times I forget to take my thyroid medicine that I’ve been on for more than 10 years…and I truly need it to survive.
Don’t let a little memory issue keep you from creating and forging through any life routine you set for yourself. Create reminders in your phone. Place post-it notes throughout your house, in the car, and at work. Solicit an accountability partner even. Do whatever it takes for you to stick to your plan. Be clear and detailed as to what each step will look like. This helps you remain focused. This does not mean that you’ll never have to make adjustments. Sometimes I switch things up just to keep it all fresh.
My morning spiritual agenda is quite specific to my needs. But it can be adjusted and used however anyone sees fit. “It goes a little something like this.”
- Rise: This part has nothing to do with me. For 40 years and 3 months God has placed breath in my body. When I realize this blessing each day I alert myself to my surroundings and immediately move into my regimen.
- Pray: I pray to God in this order/manner each day.
- Give God thanks for life and the many blessings He has bestowed upon me.
- Covering and blessings over my son, family, and friends.
- Covering and blessings over myself for the day at hand
- Requests for my future.
- Read: I love to read. There is so much out there in reference to spirituality. But I stick to “my basics”. Choose what is best for your life’s journey.
- Bible verses based on specific goals and desires.
- Devotions based on specific goals and desires.
- (if time permits) Various readings from books to pattern my journey after, or that inspire me though uncertainty or affirm me. 2 of my favorites are “Little Shifts: You Can Create Change” and “The Radiance Sutras”.
- Meditate: This point is a blog or 2 in itself. I’ll post one eventually. So, please pardon my brevity and lack of deep detail.
- Silently reflect on what I read.
- Listen for God to show me from that what will be useful to me for the day.
- Sit with those words/phrases.
- Create a mantra or choose a single word of (daily) reflection.
- Use a pranayama practice to bring mental clarity and focus.
- Couple the mantra/word with pranayama.
- Sit quietly to hear direction from God.
- Be epic: This is my day! Once I have finished my meditation I carry on with my day. Depending on the day there are 2 options.
- Begin my daily routine (next post).
- Return to sleep.
Regardless of what my active day consists of I make a conscious choice to be epic. To me this means using every talent and resource God has given me to bring forth the blessings I desire; while being a blessing to those I am connected to through family, work, and community.
- Repeat: Simply put, I commit to doing all of this at the very start of every day. Often times I repeat steps 2-4 several times throughout the day.
Now, this all sounds lofty and beautiful. I must be honest though. Some days I miss some points. Some days it’s like a “working lunch”. As you can see, normally all of this takes place in my bed, meditation may move to the floor. But there are days that I oversleep. So, I pray in the shower, and read my scripture as I brush my teeth or let my phone read it to me. This may result in a silent commute to work, listening for God, and I’ll meditate when I get into my class.
No matter the situation I make it a point that each day I RISE to PRAY. READ. MEDITATE. BE EPIC. And REPEAT.