What Is It About 4 AM?

4AM

Four o’clock in the morning is a magical and often anxiety ridden time for me. I don’t know what makes it special, but when I wake up at 4AM there’s a certain consistency in how I frequently feel, or where my mind often goes.

At 4AM every ache or pain is a certain sign of impending death or at a minimum a major illness.

At 4AM every noise is either an intruder, or some appliance or other aspect of the house about fail in some catastrophic way. Or maybe “the big one” we keep waiting for.

At 4AM it’s critical that I hear each dog breathing, or for certain they must be dead.

At 4AM — ditto for my wife.

At 4AM my todo list for the next day is oppressively long.

At 4AM — same for my list of mistakes from the previous day.

At 4AM small problems are large problems, and large problems are downright disasters in the making.

And of course at 4AM everything on the aforementioned list must be ruminated on, mulled over, dissected, and just generally worried about.

If I awake at 4AM and that list takes hold, my brain clicks “ON!” and anxiety has me awake for an hour or more. Eventually I doze off again.

2AM? Not a problem. Back to sleep I go. 6AM? Ditto.

It’s consistently around 4AM. No idea what it is about my sleep cycle that makes that time “special.”

And of course come 8AM when I finally wake “for real”, all is once again right by the world. I’m healthy, the wife and pets are all alive, the house is still standing, the to-do list gets prioritized into submission, and life is good.

What’s equally puzzling is that I don’t consider myself as someone prone to anxiety, which is what this all really boils down to.

There’s just something about 4AM. I just don’t know what it is.

Comments

  1. Aloha Leo, 4 AM… is ‘opportunity time’. Opportunity to do everything that is important to & for YOU. May I recommend… think of “trading” as in OPTION TRADING the stock (& option) markets that open @ 6:30 am – M thru F, Washington State time. Remember, NO one cares or is interested in YOUR MONEY more than YOU! Early AM is the ‘fun’ time to think, plan and follow-thru with trading. [e.g. pulling out / making $$$$ from ‘the market’] Also, just to show you I’m NOT soliciting you for anything… send me an email – down below – if you want more information or want to research how to do ‘IT’ by yourself. [ OH! I almost forgot… THANKS A MILLION for ‘ask Leo’; I’ve been a subscriber for years & years. ] Lucky ;-)))

  2. I’ve been told that is when we are closest to God and the Angels….when I wake up at 4am, I listen to a positive guided meditation, and go back to sleep easily, with no negativity or fears. If you are not religious, maybe a nature sound meditation, there are a lot of them out there. P

  3. So glad to see I am not alone. Maybe it has to do with getting old.

  4. I do the exact same thing. drives me nuts, stay in bed and worry or get up waaayyy too early and get something done. I think its age.

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