The first thing you do when you wake up is…
Check your phone?
“According to a new survey from the tech analyst company ReportLinker, 46 percent of Americans admitted to checking their smartphones before they even get out of bed in morning” (Tech Times).
Are you surprised? I am not. unfortunately, so many of us – me included! – are too attached to our phones. As if we are missing something if we are not checking it every few minutes.
Yet I’d like to suggest to change the waking-up routine. To have something else, or maybe a few things, we do before we check the phone. Simply to start the day on the right foot.
One great way to start our day is by saying Modeh Ani. This special prayer should be said as soon as we wake up, and it consists of one Hebrew sentence that can be said in English, too:
“I offer thanks to You, living and eternal King, for You have mercifully restored my soul within me; Your faithfulness is great.”
Imagine. Instead of checking if you have new notification on Facebook, if you got an email or if someone posted a beautiful picture on Instagram, you are simply stopping to reflect on the greatest gifts of all, the gift of life.
And if you already say Modeh Ani, I suggest to infuse your morning routine with even more holiness. Look into “Birkot Hashachar”, the morning blessings – it consists of many blessings that bring out even a deeper appreciation for our so many blessings; Maybe add a short learning routine, even 60 seconds, before you start your day and check your phone.
In our Torah portion, we find the following verse: “From the first portion of your dough you shall give a gift to the Lord in [all] your generations”. However, if you look at the original Hebrew, you will find the word “Arisotechem”. The word Arisotechem can be translated as “your dough”, but it can also be translated as “your bed”.
In other words, “from the first moments of you waking up from bed, you should give a gift to the Lord” (the 6th Lubavitcher Rebbe).
Our first waking moments are special and precious. When we make them holy, we are setting our entire day on the right path.