I have discovered that having a consistent morning routine makes a huge difference in my daily productivity and general likability. As a working mom, I need all the help I can get, and honestly, morning routines make a night and day difference.
I have found that my morning routine sets the stage for my entire day; it keeps me grounded and focused. And like I said, generally, a nicer person to be around too!
At least, that is what I think! So, without further ado, here are my top 10 steps to a productive morning routine for working moms and dads.
You might find some or all of them useful; use what works for you and experiment with other techniques that would make your day joyous and productive.
1. Your morning routine starts the night before
Yep! Each night, set aside 20 minutes to plan for your next morning and do as much as it makes sense before you go to bed.
During the school year, lay the outfits out for your kids (if they are young) or make sure they do. Be sure to have them pack their bags. Make and pack their lunch and snacks the night before, if at all possible.
Set the breakfast table the night before and put out the dry goods that your child will consume in the morning such as cereal, nuts, etc.
If you drink coffee in the morning, set the coffee maker so that you just have to press a button when you wake up. If you drink tea, fill the tea kettle with water and have your teabag or loose tea ready for the next morning.
2. Wake up 30-45 minutes before your children
Waking up earlier than your kids is an essential part of a daily routine for moms.
This will give you time to wake up and be present when your children are awake. If you are like me, the snooze button on your alarm clock is dented because of how often I hit it!
I actually no longer use my alarm clock but use my phone which I keep away from my bedside. In order for me to shut off the alarm, I have to physically get out of bed. That does the trick!
3. Refrain from looking at your phone or sitting on the couch
Phones and couches are the enemies of moms’ daily routines. Resist the urge to give in!
Do not sit on the couch when you go into your family room. You will fall right back asleep.
Also, do not try to catch up on your email, your social media, the news, etc. The next 45 minutes should be spent on getting you focused and grounded.
Any digital interruption, unless you are bringing up a meditation app, is going to hinder your ability to take control of your morning and hence your day.
4. Go outside
Going outside can make or break a working mom’s morning routine.
Our days are especially long during late spring and summer. Use this opportunity to get some fresh air by going for a walk or even sitting out on your deck or porch.
Whatever you need to do to expose yourself to the fresh and crisp morning air plus natural light. Even 10 minutes makes a big difference.
5. Water before caffeine
Drinking lemon water during the morning has many health and mental benefits. It is strongly believed that drinking lemon water will help with alertness and mental sharpness.
Since our livers are very active during sleep, regulating chemicals in our blood. Drinking water in the morning allows the liver to continue to do its job effectively.
As a bonus, drinking lemon water is thought by some to help with weight loss as well. According to WebMD, “After drinking approximately 17 ounces of water, the subjects’ metabolic rates — or the rate at which calories are burned — increased by 30% for both men and women. The increases occurred within 10 minutes of water consumption and reached a maximum after about 30 to 40 minutes.”
6. Sit and quiet your mind
If meditation is your jam, great! It is mine!
But frankly, it is about decluttering and quieting your mind. Sit somewhere quiet on a hard surface (again, not your couch) and take 5 minutes to breathe deeply and quiet your mind. Ideally, do this outside.
Get your mind to stop chattering so you can stay focused and be grounded.
7. Put pen to paper
Many gurus recommend journaling as an important step in a daily morning routine for moms and non-moms. For me, I would rather write my goals.
Again, whatever is your jam but I will tell you that writing two goals for the day has been an important part of my daily morning routine.
Why two? Read this blog about time management.
If I have these goals already written down from my Sunday planning session, then I review them, underline them and maybe write myself some encouraging notes. “You got this”, “Changing the world one day at a time”, “Today is a GREAT day and I am going to make it even better” and of course, my most favorite affirmation: “Monday is the BEST day of the week.” Honestly, I do love Mondays.
8. Daily affirmations
I love writing myself encouraging notes. “You got this”, “Changing the world one day at a time”, “Today is a GREAT day and I am going to make it even better” and of course, my most favorite affirmation: “Monday is the BEST day of the week.”
Honestly, I do love Mondays. I write these notes in my daily planner.
They are a great way to remember that I choose my feelings, not the other way around. They remind me that I have the power to make today a great day.
9. Clean up
If you can take a shower without waking everyone up, do it.
Otherwise, get yourself cleaned up. Dry shampoo, an energizing facewash, your favorite face moisturizer, clean and fresh clothes, and of course, whatever makes you feel good about yourself.
Since the pandemic began, I have just about stopped using makeup except for my foundation because, well, I just like it, and a spray of my Gardenia natural perfume.
10. Wonder woman pose
Did you know that the wonder woman pose can boost your confidence and literally make you feel like you are about to take over the world?
In her hugely popular TedTalk, social psychologist Amy Cuddy explains that “power posing”, even if and when we feel far from powerful, can increase our confidence and might even influence our success. Her talk has been viewed just about 62M times.
I do believe that, myself. Side note, this is one of the reasons I love wearing high heels; I have to stay very grounded and straight in heels or I will just stumble and fall! And morning power poses definitely help.
Closing thoughts on my personal morning routine for working moms
I love my daily morning routine.
My daily morning routine helps me feel that I am in control of my experience that day and it helps me stay focused on my work tasks while being a reasonably pleasant mom and wife!
I hope you have found these ten steps to a productive morning routine for working moms useful.
Drop me a note and let me know how these work for you and if you have found any other techniques that you have incorporated into your morning routine.