Are mornings a marathon to get everyone out of the house and where they need to be in time?
Do you feel exhausted before you even get to start your day? And do you feel guilty for yelling and shoving your kids out the door instead of sending them off calmly and ready to start their day in the mornings?
We can all do this better! Here are some tips we’ve put together to improve that morning routine:
—Go to sleep on time. That’s the simplest way to make your morning better.
—Don’t snooze and go back to sleep. The interrupted sleep just makes you more tired.
—Get up earlier than your kids. Set your alarm at least 15 minutes before the first wake up needs to happen. What you do with those 15 minutes is up to you, but don’t expect to be able to wake up a child with the right attitude if you haven’t fully woken up. Take a shower, drink a coffee, do some sit-ups, or just lie in bed planning your day. But give yourself at least 15 minutes in which to do that.
—Work with the child you have. Do you have a kid who should be dressing himself without prompting but still loses focus and takes forever? Maybe dress his younger siblings in his room so you can stay on top of things. It may be frustrating, but losing it and yelling at him every morning is not how he’ll learn. Work with incentives and positive reinforcement and eventually, he will get faster, but don’t sacrifice a peaceful morning to frustration.
—The most important factor for a smooth morning is being prepared. Do not go to sleep at night without confirming that every single thing possible has been prepared. Lunches and snacks, water bottles, homework signatures, excuse notes – all should be ready. Do you work out first thing in the morning? Your workout clothes should be laid out. School clothes? Work clothes? Don’t wait until morning to realize there are no clean tights that also don’t have holes. Not enough milk/eggs/bread on hand? Make sure to take care of that at night! (Freezer backups will save you!)
Backpacks, purses, boots, coats – everything must be in place before you to bed. And if that place is close to the door, that’s even better.