This is a bit of a provocative title. I myself, am not a smoker and I am in no way suggesting that any of us start. But this last weekend I spent a few days with a close friend who smokes and something caught my attention, there was something there that inspired me.
It wasn’t the smoking, but instead it was the routine. Each morning, first thing as soon as we got up, he’d head out into the garden for a smoke. It was that special time in the morning when everything’s still and quiet. Whilst I rushed around the kitchen fixing breakfast, he spent 10 minutes wandering around the garden, enjoying the morning. The same thing happened last thing at night, I’d be loading the dishwasher, switching everything off and tidying away and he spent 10 minutes, standing outside staring at the stars.
It’s these 10 minute breaks that I truly wanted. A chance to step away from the tasks of the day, take some deep breathes and stare at the sky. So it’s left me thinking, could it be possible: could I allow myself 20 minutes a day to just be, to take in the moment and appreciate the day. It’ll take a surprising amount of discipline to accomplish, especially without the activity of smoking, but I think there could be some value in it.
I’ve written before about the benefits of meditation, and I often practice a 10 minute meditation to clear and focus my mind. Going forward I’m going to also try to embrace the outdoors, to stand and stare in awe, just without the cigarettes.
Photo courtesy of NASA