Let me preface this by saying that I have never viewed myself as a morning person. So all you non-morning people out there, I SEE YOU. I was always the one wanting to sleep late as a kid and even today, I’ve always slept in when I can.
I started realizing that waking up to my oldest son proclaiming “it’s morning time!”, was not an ideal way to start my day. I would be grumpy and groggy and usually impatient and immediately on edge.
I knew something needed to change.
That’s when I posted on IG stories asking how you guys start your day in a productive way. I got so many great responses and I’ll list some of them at the end. I also asked who wakes up before their kids and while less than half of you wake up before your kids, so many of you that do messaged to say what a difference it makes. I also noticed that a lot of the people who don’t wake up before their kids messaged saying they wish they did.
I had honestly tried this before. At the beginning of quarantine, I would wake up at 6am to get a run in before the kids woke up. I lasted 10 days and gave up.
I realized I needed to start the morning with something I wanted to do. Something peaceful, slow, but still productive. So I gave this new morning routine thing a go. And here is the routine I came up with.
CURRENT MORNING ROUTINE
- 6am - wake up and immediately make the bed (this is mainly so I won’t crawl back in it)
- Go downstairs and make a cup of tea
- Bring it back upstairs to my quiet “me” corner of my room.
- Do my Bible reading (I’ve been going through a Bible plan/podcast called Bible Recap and it’s truly amazing) and pray
- Go over my to-do list for the day
- Try to get some emails done - emails always linger over my head, so getting them done first thing helps me have a better start to my day
- 7am - Turn Liam’s light green (he has a Hatch light that we are obsessed with) and go get Wyatt out of his crib
- Breakfast with the boys
HOW IT’S GOING
You guys, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed waking up before the kids in the morning. It’s something I look forward to because it’s some of the only “me” time I get during the day that doesn’t involve work or housework. It has been so great for my mental health because not only do I get some time to myself, but it’s productive time so I feel like I’ve accomplished some things before the day really begins. I've noticed I'm more patient with my kids in the morning and just have a much more calm demeanor in general.
This isn’t to say that I don’t “sleep in” (usually only until about 6:45am/7am) every once in a while when Will can wake up with the kiddos. This also doesn’t mean that every single morning I’m waking up with a chipper song coming from my mouth while birds merrily make my bed for me. I do not always want to get up at 6 but I never regret doing it.
Here are some of your suggestions for how to start your morning in a productive way:
- Family breakfast
- Bible reading & prayer
- Writing out to-do list for the day
- Stretch & drink water
- Make the bed
- Light candle & meditate
- Go to bed earlier. This one was hard for me because I like my time at the end of the day when the kids are in bed. But all I did was move my bedtime up 30 minutes (from 10pm to 9:30pm) and it has made it so much easier to be up at 6am.
- Make your routine something you enjoy. I feel like this is so important. When I was waking up to run, I dreaded it. Now that I've started implementing a routine I actually enjoy, waking up isn't as hard.
- Do what works for you. I want to end with just a bit of encouragement which is do what is best for you. I knew I needed to take care of myself better in order to love people around me better. That looks different for everyone. So find what refreshes you and do it!
If you have any other tips or suggestions, put them in the comments below so I and other readers can benefit from them!