Hmmmm. A Daily Routine. Are they good or bad? Do they create more productivity or just create more stress?
No matter how we do it or whether or not we want to, we all create routines in our lives. It may be something we fall into because of a work schedule or child’s schedule. Or it may be something that we create in order to get more done. Either way, I believe having some routines in your life can be beneficial for both you and your family.
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Recent Podcast Learning…
I had never heard of him, but I listen to Amy’s podcast’s because I respect her and her vision of creating a business that you can be proud of and doesn’t take over your life. Anyway, the show was about getting more done by doing less.
Now, any of you who are moms like me out there, we know that there is always an endless amount of STUFF to do. And I am not just talking about mom’s who work in the home or outside the home. I was a stay at home mom for 12 years and I know what kind of stuff we get caught up in.
One minute you are cleaning the bathroom, then you blink and you are scrubbing the deck rails and making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich while you stand on your head and sing your child’s favorite song to get them to stop crying. 😉
I know it doesn’t get quite that bad but I can tell you that I have been doing one task one minute and then the next minute I realize I have done 10 other things that don’t even relate to the one task I started with and wanted to get done that day. And it was probably something simple like brushing my hair.
So then here I am trying to get the kids on the bus and out the door and I realize that I haven’t brushed my hair and I am actually still in my pajamas…a thought that completely got away from me…needing to put on my clothes!…and I am walking my kids to the bus.
Did I mention the huge zit on my face and the fact that my pajama pants have holes in them? So now I not only feel like a complete failure, but I actually look like one to all my neighbors as well.
The Role of a Mom
If only the role of a mom had an easy and straightforward definition. How do we get things done with the kids around? How do we define ourselves? Before kids, it was probably something like
As a stay at home mom, I have been guilty plenty of times in the past of just “escaping” into the garage to sit in silence. With nothing to do, nobody to talk at me, and with some peace of mind. Because let’s face it, being a mom isn’t easy.
A day in the life of a mom is so busy. Even now when my kids are in school all day, there is still a ton to do. And on top of it all, I am now a blogger so I have to make time for that too.
So how do we get it all done as moms?
We stick to a schedule.
A daily routine that will help us make sure everyone’s laundry is washed, lunch is packed, and toothpaste is bought.
Daily Routine Examples from Famous People
You know, I wanted to add these examples at first to help give moms an idea of how to schedule their own days. But I realized as I was researching these, that they are more of something funny to read than anything else. The life of a mom is totally different from these famous people, but maybe they will give you some motivation to create your own routine in order to be more successful like them.
Then read further to see my own daily routine…as a mom…and some realistic ideas you can use for your own routine creation.
Blake Mycoskie – Founder of TOMS Shoes
“When I wake up on the boat, it’s very relaxed. I usually get up at 8:30, have a Clif Bar for breakfast, and spend a few hours thinking and writing before going in to the office.”
Bill Gates – Founder of Microsoft
Gates checks the headlines every morning. He typically reads The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Economist.
8:00 A.M. I’m a late riser by my family’s standards.
8:15 A.M. The first thing I do is check my iPhone and my BlackBerry and have breakfast, coffee, and exercise.
8:45 A.M. I jump in the bath.
And that’s my morning regime
“Rowling replies “Piss-Off” to a tweet stating that successful people rise at 4 a.m. This may be why…”
“Take Rowling’s by-now famous story. She moved to Edinburgh, Scotland, in December 1993 with a four-month-old daughter, no job, and, in her suitcase, three chapters of a novel about a boy wizard. She would load her baby into a stroller and walk until the child fell asleep, then park them both in a café and write as much as she could, pouring the pain of her mother’s death, her recent divorce, and her seemingly impossible situation into a story about a world of evil forces threatening good, in which magic rescues the unsalvageable.”
Sara Blakely – Founder of Spanx
The Spanx founder tells New York Magazine’s The Cut that she’s never had a cup of Joe. Instead, she has a unique and slightly awful-sounding smoothie, chock-full of healthy ingredients to start her day. Indeed, her husband, she says, thinks it’s disgusting
“She wakes up at 5:00 am because she exercises. At 8:00 am she takes her dog a walk, Oliver. After the walk, Rihanna has breakfast, usually breakfast fruit, then brushes her teeth and showers. She arranges, dresses, make-up and also puts on matching jewelry, she finally goes to work.”
7:10 A.M. Every day that I can wake up surrounded by nature in my own home [in Montecito, California] is a perfect one.
8:00 A.M. First thing in the morning, I brush my teeth and take the dogs out.
I make my favorite espresso
I pull out a card from my 365 Gathered Truths box. I read five of them each morning; it’s a beautiful way to start the day.
8:30 A.M. I have a series of spiritual exercises that I do every day.
Then I meditate
9:00 A.M. After my meditation, I work out for an hour
Good Daily Routines
Good daily routines are made up of things that start your day how you want it to start. Do you want your day to be highly productive? Relaxing? Or maybe healthy? The routine you set for yourself can be any of those things or even a combination to create more balance in your life.
For example, if you like to have a day full of productivity, then a good morning routine may include exercising, doing chores, or working first thing in the morning. If that is when you are your most energetic and productive then that may be the perfect idea for you.
Maybe you would rather wake up and feel motivated all day? You may want to listen to a motivational podcast or recite a mantra that motivates you to get things done.
If you prefer a morning that is relaxing, then possibly a morning meditation session, yoga, or deep breathing may be the way to go.
Your afternoons will be what you want as well if you create a good routine for that time of day too.
And the evening routine may be for finishing up tasks, prepping for tomorrow, and spending time with your family.
Overall, the best routines are the ones that revolve around you. Your personality, your family life, your expectations, and your energy levels.
Best Practices To Add To Your Daily Routine
The best routine for a healthy life includes things
- eating healthy food
I believe that to truly live a healthy life, you must incorporate these items into your everyday life. Without these 5 items in your daily routine, you will not be as productive as you want because you are not taking care of the things that matter most for productivity…your mind, body, and soul.
Healthy food makes your brain and your body stronger and more able to fight off disease.
Meditation/Prayer allows for
Relaxation allows your mind and body to relax and reorder itself for maximum thinking power and muscle power in your body.
Sleep reconnects and repairs the synapses in your brain and body so you can work at your most efficient level every day.
Exercise keeps your body strong and prevents injury. But it also increases oxygen/
All of these practices are essential if you want a daily routine that is productive and satisfying for you.
How To Create A Routine That Works For You
So how do you find out what your own routine should be?
By using my daily routine worksheet. This worksheet is designed to help you brainstorm your day and create the routine that is best for your health, productivity, family time, and fun.
Morning Routine Ideas To Help You Create Your Ideal Morning
Idea 1: Wake up at
same time every day.
Waking up at the same time every morning allows you to actually stick to your schedule every day. If you set a task to do for 7:00 in the morning, then you need to be up by then to get it done.
Having a random wake-up time will diminish the effects of creating a schedule by causing you to miss tasks, and then spend the rest of the day playing catch-up.
Idea 2: Empower yourself
Idea 3: Throw in a load of laundry first thing
This idea can work with any chore you need to get done on any particular day, but I like to do laundry first thing for one big reason. . . It washes on its own. That means that I can (or should I say the washer can) wash a whole load of laundry while I am getting the kid’s their breakfast and getting them dressed and out the door for school.
By the time they are on the bus, it is time to move the laundry to the dryer. Then I do a few other things on my list and come back to the laundry to fold later in the morning.
At least one load is finished and just needs to be put away!
Idea 4: Exercise
I don’t know about you, but on the days that I exercise, I like to do it right after the kids leave for school. If I decide to start working on my blog or cleaning, or anything else for that matter, I will never do it because I get into a rhythm and don’t want to change it.
There is a great book you can read called Eat That Frog that is all about how you should do the things you don’t want to do the most, first. I guess my ‘frog’ is exercise!
What my morning routine looks like just to give you an idea…
7:30 a.m. ~ I wake up, take my thyroid medicine (because I have to wait an hour to eat)
~Lay on my heating pad for a little while and stretch…(darn back)!
8:00 a.m. ~Throw on some clothes (workout, comfy clothes, just depends on the day)
~ Throw in a load of laundry.
~Make breakfast for my kids and make sure they are getting dressed and brushing teeth.
8:35 a.m. ~ Get the kids out the door with shoes, coats, lunches, and book bags!
~ Put them on the bus.
~ Move laundry to dryer.
8:45 a.m. ~ Eat my breakfast
9:00 a.m. ~ Exercise on certain days or take dog a walk other days.
10:00 a.m. ~ Start working. I work the rest of the morning but I take a few minutes to fold the clothes when they come out of the dryer so they don’t get wrinkled. I also drink my Matcha Tea!
Midday Routine Ideas
Here are a few ideas for your afternoon routine. If you have small children who nap in the afternoon, that time is golden. You can either use it to get things done or take a much needed nap!
Idea 1: Make/Eat Lunch
This may be a given, but just making sure you remember! Food is important! I also like to empty the dishwasher at this time since I am already in the kitchen. Then I load the dirty dishes.
Idea 2: Relax
I find that the afternoon is a good time for me to relax. After I have worked all morning, done chores, and exercised, I feel that to wind down before the kids get home, relaxation is a good habit. This may be meditation or yoga for you. I like to do my bible study or watch an episode of a TV show I love (HaHa…it’s always ‘Friends’ on Netflix!).
Idea 3: Take a nap
Did you know that taking a nap mid-afternoon can actually help you be more productive? Well, as a mom, I know that productivity isn’t always what we are looking for. Sometimes we just need to catch up so we can be better moms and think more clearly!
Idea 4: Daydream
Daydreaming is highly under-rated! Did you know that day dreaming is how your mind takes a “vacation
So try it out. Try daydreaming about being on a vacation or on a beach, or maybe just daydream about getting a good night’s sleep!
Idea 5: Use your imagination
Using your imagination once in a while is healthy for your mind and soul. And I am not talking about doing kid crafts. If the only time you have to be creative is during craft time, then try taking the craft a step further to really use your imagination. Or you could use your child’s naptime to draw, color, paint, or do a hobby. Anything that uses your imagination.
Idea 6: Read a good book
I am not talking about reading something helpful or motivational here. I am talking about reading something that you enjoy. Take some time every day to read something you love and get a break from reading things about ‘red balloons, kittens, and mittens’.
Evening Routine Ideas
Idea 1: Pack lunches
Packing lunches the night before will save your sanity in the morning. I always try to wake up every morning at the same time. But there are always some mornings that we all
Idea 2: Clean up kitchen
I don’t know about you, but I like to have a clean kitchen when I go to bed in the evening. After dinner, I make sure that I do all the dishes, either by hand or by putting them in the dishwasher. Then I wipe down all the countertops and the table to get rid of crumbs and any dirt that came in on the kid’s book bags or lunch bags.
Idea 3: Make a list of to-dos for the next day
One thing that really can help you sleep better at night is to not be worrying about all the things you have to do the next day. I am always afraid that I will forget everything after sleeping…which I usually do.
So I found that writing down all the tasks and errands I need to remember for the next day is important for me to do every night. I am not talking about giant projects.
I am talking about things
- remember to buy those red socks for the second grade play, they are due tomorrow
- put the garbage can out for garbage night because the hubs is out of town
- start dinner at 4 because we have an early practice.
These are all things that are not on my normal routine. Maybe someone else usually does them, or we don’t have many second grade plays, or because practice usually isn’t as early.
But writing them down gets them out of my head so I can sleep easier knowing that I will definitely remember them the next day.
Idea 3: Put away laundry
I wash, dry, and fold the laundry as part of my earlier routine. Then in the evening, while I am waiting for the kids to get showers or put their pj’s on, I can put away laundry.
And now that my kids are old enough to help out, I can tell them to grab their laundry and put it away!
Idea 4: Go to bed at the same time
So you started your day by waking up at the same time every day. Now, I want you to go to bed at the same time everyday. Because sleep is important. And you need to get as much sleep as you can when you have kids.
How to make a daily routine and sick to it
The key to sticking with any daily routine is planning, habit, and also flexibility.
I think the most important key to sticking with your daily schedule, as a mom, is flexibility.
Because as a mom you never know what curve ball is going to be thrown to you, don’t over pack your days. That will just create more stress for you. Do one or two chores, play with your kids, make time for some self-care, and be sure to get plenty of sleep.
That’s about all you need each day because you never know when you are going to have to make a sudden doctor visit, have a sick child home with you, or get sick yourself. Things come up, so flexibility is key in your mom routine.
As you start to get in the habit of doing certain things at certain times of day, you will find that your routine will come together and you will start to see more productivity in your day. This will also happen as
And remember to plan. Not every little detail, but something in writing that you can try to stick to. If you know that the second-grade play is coming up, you need to plan to buy that costume! 🙂
Then, make sure to spend the rest of your time on you and your family, just having fun!
Thanks so much for reading! I would love to hear about your own routines in the comments below! It may help give some other moms ideas of ways to schedule their own days!