Making a Morning Routine Work

If you work or have kids or are a breathing human being, mornings come every day. Every.Single.Day. And, even for the most morning of morning person, finding a routine to kick off your day can be a challenge.

Well, I think I’ve found my magic morning combo. And tricky enough, it actually starts with a nighttime routine. I blogged about a nightly brain dump last month. That’s where it starts. I’ve also set up a “bedtime” routine in my iPhone. There are multiple apps for this same purpose; I’m a big fan of Sleep Cycle as well! I know that 7 hours is a minimum sleep total for me to function. So, if I’m not in bed by 10:30pm, my phone tells me “get to bed!”

The alarm goes off at 6:15am … every day. This almost ALWAYS guarantees I’m up before my son. From there, I have a prioritized list of what to attempt to accomplish before he DOES wake up.

morning routineFirst – coffee! I make a pot of coffee and IF I’ve been really on the ball … I put the water and grounds in the pot the night before so I just have to flip the switch!

Second – I read my daily Bible app then scroll through Instagram stories … cause, let’s be honest, as a single parent who works from home, Instagram stories are my way to socialize daily. I have some of the BEST imaginary Instagram friends!

At this point, if Henry still isn’t awake, I unload and load the dishwasher. Then I move on to one load of laundry.

Now we are just about to 7am, and Henry is PROBABLY awake. BUT I already feel like I can conquer the day. A few chores are behind me AND I’ve had coffee.

IF (and big if) Henry is still sleeping after morning chores, I pull out my brain dump list from the night before and begin to organize it for the day and week. Otherwise, this is my first task AFTER Henry is dropped off!

All of these things seem so simple to implement, but the key is actually making yourself DO it. Between the brain dump and the set wake up time, my mornings have been so much more smooth. It’s much harder for frustration to bubble up when I feel like I already have a grip on the day.

Now, I fully recognize that this is what works for me, and it might not work for everyone. So here is what I would encourage you to think through when trying to determine YOUR morning routine:

  1. What are your pain points in the AM. Is it breakfast? Is it chores piling up? Is it getting out the door quicker?
  2. What “morning” items can be assigned another time of the day?
  3. What is easier to accomplish before kiddos are awake?
  4. What daily activity helps you to feel accomplished?

For me, having a cup of coffee and getting dishes done before the day starts puts me on good footing! That might be different for you depending on how many kids you have, what time you have to be out the door, or if you are at home during the day or not. Take stock of your routine and play around with it!

Defining a morning routine wasn’t easy for me, but it has helped me become my most efficient self these past few months!

Sarah Joy Hays is a native of Louisiana and graduate of LSU! She returned to Baton Rouge in 2015 after 6 years living and working in DC. She is a proud momma to an enthusiastic, red-haired toddler and is navigating all of this as a solo parent; fully relying on group texts with other moms, coffee, and Jesus. Sarah Joy, or SJ, has devoted much of her abundant spare time to the Moms on Campus, South Baton Rouge Presbyterian Church, and her newly founded Foundation that will focus on emergency disaster response. She claims to love to read, journal, and cook; but only manages one of the three out of daily necessity. SJ dreams of having a Target collaboration based on coffee mugs and dry shampoo one day… till then she will enjoy running her bakery CounterspaceBR and growing a consulting business!


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