Most of my life I’ve considered myself a night owl. But since having children my perception and reality have shifted. I have learnt to love mornings and value the time and space that waking early can offer –
- waking before the family to get a head-start on the day
- getting work done without depriving anyone of my presence and attention
- getting ahead with some of the household tasks that help the house to run more smoothly
My ideal waking time is 5.30am and there have been times where this was possible. Right now, with some night-owl leaning tendencies present in other members of the family, 6.30 is a more reasonable waking time.
Even then, I am struggling to fit in seven hours sleep each night. I know that seasons come and go and that change is never far away. So at the moment I am trying to accept the current situation with grace and know that soon enough things will have moved on again and I will, once again, be waking before the sun.
Whatever time I wake, I try to follow a basic morning routine.
Following routines comes more naturally to some than others. For me, I need it written down… and then I need reminders on my phone to look at it… and then I need a hand-written note to remind me to look on my phone… and – enough already! I’m sure you get the picture, I am easily distracted. But I am working on this and now much of this morning routine feels like second-nature-ish!
So the morning routine –
- Water – I usually drink a pint of water as soon as I wake up and another one pretty soon after.
- Animals – let the doggie in the garden. Feed him and the rabbit. Somewhere around here I turn the kettle on for that first glorious mug of Earl Grey. Some point soon I might wander out in the garden to clear up any business my four-legged friend has left behind (it’s a dirty job but someone’s gotta do it – yes, I was singing as I wrote that bit!)
- Re-boots – the washing and the washing up, hopefully while the dog and the kettle are doing their stuff. Re-booting is just a cool way (thanks, Flylady) to say ‘taking the next step to move these jobs along’; unfortunately completion isn’t really an option or reality here.
The actual task will depend on my efficiency the previous evening. Some mornings a load of washing will be ready to hang out, other times I’ll need to get a load on. For the washing up, it could be as simple as clearing the draining board and washing up any straggler items from last night – maybe a mug and cereal bowl left over from a late night snacker (you know who you are!) On some mornings, it could be a complete tidy up of last night’s dinner things – not my favourite or proudest moments.
- Write and walk – These are the two big tasks I want to complete before anyone else is awake. My intention is to work on a writing project for 30 minutes to an hour each morning. I’m also trying to make sure I walk 10,000 steps every day, so aim for about 2000 before breakfast.
- Check the to-do list – reminding myself of the plan and most important tasks for the day ahead. I usually check the calendar and weekly plan as part of my evening routine so I can prepare any launch-pad items that might be needed in the morning and pinpoint the most important tasks that will need to be done.
- Breakfast time – once my little one wakes up, it’s breakfast time. And so the day begins!
Some days I manage to complete all the tasks of my morning routine, and others, not so much. But I do love the reminders and rough plan it provides.
Do you have a morning routine? If you have any tips for getting the day off to the best start, I would love to hear them, please comment below.