The one luxury you can give yourself

Unless you’re dying of some terminal illness or something

Photo by Ricky Kharawala on Unsplash

I had a stress-free morning. After a quick shower, I made my family some breakfast, saw my wife out the door and got the girls ready for school and daycare. The drive to both places was leisurely — there was no traffic, but we would have been fine even if the AZ-51 was packed tighter than passengers in a United airplane.

This morning stood in complete contrast to others. Usually, by the time I’ve made food for everyone else, mine is cold. And I have to shovel it into my gaping maw like someone who hasn’t had a meal in ages.

My morning commute is racked with terror—that my oldest daughter will be tardy for school, that my stress will translate into me being short with my girls. Or, maybe, in my haste to keep so many balls in the air, I’ll get into a car accident. But none of those anxieties filled my head today. Why?

I gave myself the luxury of time.

All I had to do to avoid stress, this whole time, was get up early, rouse the kids from sleep and start my day with more time than I needed.

Give yourself the luxury of time. Wake up earlier. Start your day by banking precious minutes, and then revel in the space you’ve created with them. Read the paper. Read to your kids. Or, I don’t know, poach some damn eggs.

My point is, just because your family runs like a well-oiled machine, and you know exactly what time you have to leave the house to get everyone where they need to be, doesn’t mean you couldn’t benefit by jumpstarting your day sooner.

Shit happens. Accidents add time to your commute. Breakfast has a way of soiling a child’s clothes. Wardrobe changes eat up time. So give yourself more of it.

And just breathe.