Some days I wake up ready to conquer the world. The laundry gets folded and put away, the dishes get washed and the house gets cleaned. The kids get limited TV time, the learning activities are on point, and I even squeeze a workout in during nap time. Then there are those days that don’t go according to plan. We stay in our jammies way too late (or all day if I’m being honest), toys clutter every room of the house, and the clothes are overflowing in the hamper. I rely on the TV as a babysitter, I use nap time to play on social media, and as a family, we spend too much money on takeout for dinner.
I’ve come to realize that the first few hours of our morning determine how productive the day will be. This is why a good morning routine is so important and something I have come to rely on to keep me on track, especially while quarantined at home. Here are some of my tips for developing a morning routine that works:
It’s so important to take some time for myself each morning before the kids are awake. All day I’m focused on everyone and everything else: the kids, work, the house, my husband, the pets, you name it. So early mornings are MY time. I usually fix a cup of coffee and sit in bed for about twenty minutes to get my head in the right place. I scan my planner to refresh my memory of any work obligations and items on my to-do list which I have created the previous night. I’ve always believed that making a to-do list is the best way to stay focused and on task. I’m a pen and paper gal and get great satisfaction from checking items off my list. Also, I also have been using the You Version Bible app to do a daily devotional each morning. I am currently following a plan about motherhood, which I highly recommend. Finally, I use any remaining time to scroll through social media since it’s one way I stay connected to friends during this time.
Since my husband has been working from home, I can count on him to handle the kids if they happen to get up early; however, I know once he is back at work, I will have to set my alarm fifteen minutes earlier to make sure I keep this important mommy time each morning.
My biggest tip for ensuring I have a productive day is to drag myself out of my pjs and make myself presentable as if I were actually leaving the house. As tempting as it might be to stay in my jammies all day, I know I will be lazy and do the bare minimum if I do. Getting dressed usually only involves putting on athleisure, throwing my hair in a mom bun and slapping on a little tinted moisturizer, but it puts me in the right frame of mind to conquer the day.
By this point, the kids are definitely up and the craziness has begun. It’s my turn to take over so my husband can get his workday started. I get breakfast going for the kids while trying to multitask in the kitchen. I’m not ashamed to admit my kids get TV time in the morning so I can finish up a few more tasks around the house like making the bed or starting a load of laundry. No day is exactly the same, but I try to use this time to get some housework done so I can dedicate the rest of the morning to the kids.
My morning routine is far from perfect, and it’s ever evolving. What works for me probably won’t work for everyone. However, the key is to find something that is consistent and, most importantly, helps to start the day off on the right foot. Because after all, with only 24 hours in a day, we all need to be as productive as possible for both ourselves and our family.