Some of us find ourselves rushing through showering, breakfast and getting the kids dressed and out the door. We sometimes arrive late to daycare and then struggle to get to work on time, finding ourselves exhausted before the clock strikes 9am. Simplify your mornings with our easy and realistic tips!
1. Queue up a morning playlist. Energetic music with an upbeat tempo can get everyone subconsciously moving more quickly in the mornings. Put together a playlist of some of your favorite songs, as well as a few of your kids’ favorites, and get everyone’s feet moving in those early hours!
2. Take a deep breath. When you haven’t managed to make coffee yet, your children are refusing to make their beds, and the dog is barking at a mysterious something in the closet, it can be tempting to snap at absolutely everyone in your vicinity. Instead, take a breath, and remain calm in the midst of chaos. Your calm attitude will keep everyone else from melting down and slowing your morning down even further.
3. Make sure everything has its place. Coats, backpacks, and shoes? Find a home for them in the mudroom or foyer. Important papers? Always stash them in the same spot on the counter. Making sure that you have everything you need at your fingertips will prevent you from being held up when heading out the door.
4. Adhere to a routine. Children and adults both thrive on a routine, and a firm schedule will keep your mornings much more predictable. You might want to create a schedule for each individual member of your family, and post them on the fridge to keep everyone running on time.
5. Pack everyone’s lunches the night before. Trust us, packing lunches and snacks before collapsing on the couch in front of the television at night is way less stressful than trying to do food prep in the morning while keeping the kids on time.
6. Plan outfits for the week. We think this one is pretty brilliant. Let’s say you’ve done a load of laundry over the weekend. Instead of spending time folding and hanging that laundry, simply use it to lay out outfits for the entire week. No folding required, and no fighting the kids over what they’ll wear each morning.
7. Rise and shine a little earlier each morning. You don’t have to wake up a whole hour earlier in the morning to make a big difference in your morning routine. Most families could benefit from just fifteen extra minutes of time in the mornings. Set your alarm fifteen minutes early, and score yourself a few minutes of extra time in the shower, or convincing your kids that, yes, they do need to use toothpaste on their toothbrushes this morning.
8. Simplify breakfast. Don’t let the ambitious parents of Pinterest make you think that you need to make a different breakfast every morning, or that your kids need Dora-shaped pancakes or beautifully prepared frittatas. Do your little ones like cereal? Strawberries? Yogurt? Feel free to serve them the same healthy breakfast they love everyday, especially if it’s one you know they’ll eat.
Tell us how you’ve gotten your morning routine under control over the years! Any particular challenges? How did you deal with them? We’d love to hear more in the comments section!