“Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.”
This proverb is most often attributed to Benjamin Franklin since it appeared in his Poor Richards Almanack but was really just a proverb he was repeating. He never took credit for being the originator of this proverb. In any case there is wisdom contained within this proverb that many of us who like to think we are “smart” often do not follow.
I am a prime and very stubborn example of this as for most of my 51 years on this earth from high school until about a week or so ago I have stubbornly been trying to disprove this truth.
For the past 8 days though I have been trying something new, going to bed early and getting up early. To me going to be early is any time before midnight and I have done that on 7 of the last eight nights. I have been up anywhere between 5:00 and 6:05 AM every morning.
As for healthy I have been blessed so far in my life with good health but rising early allows me to get some exercise, what would be considered very low impact weight training on a Total Gym and Ab lounger, the early models of both. It is something I have been able to do regularly and earlier in the day before life, work, and excuses “force” me to postpone this for another day.
Another health benefit is rising early allows me to get my daily Bible reading and quiet time done and done regularly which improves my spiritual health and builds spiritual muscle which benefits me in everything else I attempt to do.
As for wealthy, rising early allows me to get my physical and spiritual exercises done so I am not feeling guilty for not doing them all day when I am working on my day job. This makes me much more productive at work and, in time (once I get a handle on the current project I am working on) will allow me to spend more time with my family after work. Many days there seems to be no “after work” time (working from home is another subject for another day) and I want to change this. I am not there yet but I can see the “getting there” now.
Being more productive at work might not make me wealthy but will allow me to perform at a level that should keep me employed and allow for me to provide for my family. Obviously, there are no guarantees here though.
Rising early has provided me with the courage to start this blog, something I have been contemplating for months if not years. I don’t expect it to “change the world” but I do expect it to change my world by allowing me the opportunity and platform to write and express some of my thoughts and ideas. I am selfish in that I am writing for me. My secondary hope is that something I write will resonate with anyone who reads the words I string together and make them laugh, cry, go hmm…”why didn’t I think of that” or trigger another thought that really has nothing to do with the words they read.
Wise or Bloggier?
So for me,“Early to bed, Early to rise” does make me healthier, wealthier, and bloggier” (not sure that is a real word). I hope the wisdom will come someday too.
What Triggered This Change?
My parents often told me I should get more sleep and that not getting enough sleep was going to catch up with me some day. My wife and even my children have all told me on numerous occasions for many years I should go to bed and get more sleep. So you can see I have been told, warned, cautioned that this was a good idea. I guess that proves I just ‘might be’ one of those “stiff-necked people” that God talks about. I am sure those who know me would have no trouble believing this.
What has triggered this change for me you might ask? Well, since you did ask…while reading a guest post by Andy Traub on Chris LoCurto’s Leadership and Business blog I learned about his book Early To Rise: Learn to rise early in 30 days. He was also giving away a free copy. The title of the book intrigued me. His post and thoughts validated, reinforced, and reiterated what I had been told many times before. I did not win a copy of his book but bought my own copy a few days (actually 3 weeks in people time) later and decided it was time to take action on what I have known and have been told for years. So the book was not ‘the’ reason I decided to make this change. It was a culmination of what I had been told and really known for years. The book was just the trigger or catalyst or “the straw that broke the camel’s back.”
So that is how I got to where I am today with this new discipline I am trying to cultivate into a habit. It is still a work in progress as am I and there are still kinks to be worked out but I “finally” believe it is a discipline that is worthy of pursuit. Maybe I am getting wiser too.
Until next time…
Originally published on Peculiar Perspective on 03/09/2013