As a busy mom, I am always looking for ways to save time in the morning. Getting the kids out the door, me to an appointment, housework or work- there always seems to be a glitch in the system. However, it is important to start your day off on a positive note. The morning sets the tone for the rest of the day. So, what can you do to make the morning run smoothly? Here are some of my favorite (as well as tried and true) tips:
1. Do everything you can the night before. Whether it is laying out the kids clothes, setting the breakfast table, whatever you can do to save time in the morning.
2. Wake up at least 15 minutes before your kids. Whether you use this time to shower, pray, meditate, read, get dressed, have a cup of coffee, whatever- having that time allows you to be in control of your attitude and emotions before the kids are coming at you with their needs.
3. Be realistic about how much time you need. We tend to not allow ourselves enough slack time. Thus, we end up cutting things close, getting stressed out, running behind and even being late. Schedule a cushion of 10-20 extra minutes in your morning routine to allow for the unexpected.
4. Don't skip out on breakfast. It is the most important meal of the day. With all the meal to go bars, instant oatmeals, etc. there is no excuse for not nourishing your body before you leave the house!
5. Create a routine and stick to it. I have mentioned routines already in this post. They are crucial to decreasing stress and optimizing productivity. Routines also need to be individualized- a morning routine in my house is going to look different from the morning routine in your house. The important thing is that a routine exists.
6. Keep a list by the door. Does Suzy have her backpack? Does Jimmy have his lunchbox? Does Mommy have her shopping list? It may seem elementary but we all suffer from "momnesia" at times and a quick list to glance at will decrease the chances you will have to go back home for something.
7. Stay calm. Getting all excited and yelling at the kids will not make things run more smoothly. And, it's not good for your blood pressure, either!
8. Have a designated place for things that need to go out the door. We have a basket by the entryway that holds my keys, my purse, permission slips and the like. That way I only have to grab the contents of the basket to have everything I need.
9. Carry a spare. Have some extra change in the minivan for the kid that forgets their milk money, a laundry stick for the juicebox spill on the way to the bus stop. A prepared mom is an organized mom.
10. Stop and enjoy the moments. Too often, we are in such a rush in the morning that sweet moments between us and our kids, or our pets, or our spouse are missed. We only live each day once. So, do what you can so things run smoothly and let the little things go so your eyes can be open for the joy in your day.
Posted by Melissa of Multitasking Mama