Give thanks for your life
A key part of the “memento mori” morning routine is being grateful for your life.
And you’ll find that many advocates of the “morning ritual” or “stoicism” around the world spend the very first minutes of their day simply being “thankful”.
One way to do this is to silently pray/meditate/contemplate & be thankful that you have actually woken up, for those who love you, and for the gifts of life that you have. Many people will not have this privilege today.
Whether you consider yourself “spiritually” inclined or not is a great way to put a “frame” around the upcoming day and “remember your death – memento mori” in a positive mood.
Here’s the prayer I use. Feel free to adapt it as you wish:
Thank you [1. replace with what you want here, for example: dear father /creator / mother / life / universe or simply nothing at all] for all the gifts of life that I have today –
- The relationships [2. take a second to consider those closest to you – your wife / husband, children, parents, other family, then move outwards to friends, co-workers, acquaintances]
- The comforts [3.consider your home, car, computer, phone, your shower, clean water, the amount of free time that you have, heating, devices you own, books you have to read, the paper you have to write on, the cups that you drink from]
- The health [4. the ability to breathe, move, hear, see, touch, laugh, smile]
- And the knowledge [5. things you’ve managed to learn in life].
Today may I not, even for 1 minute, squander the greatest gift of life – Time,
But instead focus every moment on what I can control with virtue and self-discipline to expand the legacy I leave behind.
May inspiration from the sages guide and teach me mindfully in every thought, word & deed.
After the morning ritual and remembering my life, I often move on to item 2 of my morning routine: remembering my death, “memento mori” prompted by the MementoM app, which you can get here.