Good morning! If you’ve been with us from Day 1, welcome back! I’m so proud of you for continuing on! If you haven’t snagged a copy yet, it’s not too late to get yours and join us! Head on over to Make Over Your Mornings to get yours now. The workbook that comes with it is invaluable – not to mention the personal videos you get to watch each day featuring Money Saving Mom‘s very own Crystal Paine. You can find Day 1’s Blog Along post here to catch up. And if you’re looking for a testimony to how wonderful this program works, you can find mine here.
Have your copy and ready to start changing your life? LET’S GO!
At this point in the course, nailing down your morning routine is really going to sync up the rest of your day and start building those healthy habits to maintaining this new, productive way of life. You’ve already started getting up earlier, you’ve decided on your non-negotiables, learned how to implement goal setting that doesn’t hinder, but rather helps you, and you’ve established a practical way to go about your daily to-do list. Now, we can start putting all of the pieces together to form one beautiful, successful puzzle!
For me, setting up my morning routine essentially came down to my non-negotiables as well as a personal goal or two. I know that the first hour of the morning I’m awake and the children aren’t is the absolute best time of the day to get my blogging in. Blogging was one of my non-negotiables. Another of my non-negotiables is doing a daily devotional. Just having a few minutes each morning to spend in God’s word really does make all the difference in my day. It ensures I start my day putting Him first, and that helps keep him at the forefront of my mind all day.
When I went through the Make Over Your Mornings course this past summer, getting up at 6:00 in the morning was really perfect for my schedule. The kids were blissfully sleeping in until around 8:00 every day, and that gave me two entire hours to devote to a morning routine. I worked out (I even got my husband to get up a bit earlier each day and workout with me!), I did a daily devotional, I enjoyed a quiet cup of coffee each morning, and I was able to devote a lot of my time to sewing orders for my online shop. At that point, I hadn’t quite established the need for blogging first thing in the morning. Which is also why it ended up being an unintended summer break from blogging. See what happens when we don’t do important tasks first? They don’t get done! Even though I wasn’t successful in the blogging area, I absolutely loved those two hours each morning to devote to a good morning routine.
A few weeks before school started, I ended up needing to take a break from my morning routine. My grandmother (the one I talk to almost everyday and share all of my successes and failures with) was having knee-replacement surgery and needed an in-home helper for a couple of weeks. I packed myself and the kids up, and we went to stay with her for two weeks. As it turned out, the situation warranted more than we expected, so I wasn’t able to stick with my daily routine. However, it was a great example that life happens, and we aren’t going to always be able to stick to the routine on paper. What’s important is making sure we return to it as soon as we can. That’s what really determines how successful this program is making us!
After we returned home from two weeks at Grandma’s, it was the rush of getting ready to head back to school. Earlier wake times were back on the schedule for the older two, and I was still trying to “catch up” on sleep from the past two weeks. I’ll admit, it was hard getting back in the saddle. After about a month of my days not being like they had after I went through the program, my kitchen not looking like a show room every night before bed, and everyone in general not feeling the need to pick up after themselves anymore, I had had it. I was exhausted from the mere fact that everything had fallen back to old habits. And you know what? It made me mad. But even more importantly, it made me determined.
I wasn’t in the mood to settle for what I now knew to be sub-par day-to-day life. I wanted my routine back like a baby wants its bottle every night. I craved the simplicity the course brought to my life by simply showing me how to manage my time better. I missed the freedom I felt to have unexpected guests come over without worrying about dishes stacked up on the counters or shoes strewn throughout the house. I missed getting up in the morning and having time during my day that was genuinely devoted to myself. And I really missed not just being productive, but actually feeling productive from a to-do list that reflected just how successful I’d been during my day.
Now that the kids are back in school, my morning routine went from lasting two hours to only one, and I’ve felt the tightness on time constraints. Unfortunately, the morning workouts have gone to the wayside since I went to Grandma’s and haven’t made it back into the routine. However, I was able to recognize areas where my goals weren’t being met – aka blogging – and therefor reevaluated my non-negotiables to include blogging.
I love seeing that I’m accomplishing one of my big goals by devoting that time to blogging each morning. But, I also miss my morning workouts. I’d also like to start a Gratitude Journal because I think that can help me even more to focus on the good rather than the negatives in my daily life. In order to incorporate either of those two things into my morning routine, I truly need to get up a bit earlier than I currently am. 5:30 am seems like such a stretch for me, but when I think about the fact that it’s only 30 minutes early than I’m waking now, it’s really not a big deal. The problem isn’t necessarily getting up earlier as much as it is going to bed 30 minutes earlier. Unfortunately, struggling with difficulties that my thyroid disease presents, requires me to get a full eight hours of sleep. I’ve seen a huge difference in the way my body responds just getting that extra 30 minutes of sleep. So, even though that time from 9:30-10 every night is for my DVR catch up, or my book reading, or my time to veg out on the couch with my husband (thus the extreme need for morning workouts – we do fourth meal every night around 8:30) I need to buckle down and commit to setting my bed time alarm earlier.
I’ll post an update on how my 5:30 wake time goes next week! I plan on finishing out this week with my 6 am wake time, fully break down all of my goals into bite-sized pieces, and then hit next week head on with an extra half hour in my morning routine. I’m excited!
To give you an example of what my morning routine will look like once I implement the earlier wake time, I’ve listed it out below:
- 530-545am – Daily devotional, Gratitude journal
- 545-615am – Workout
- 615-7am – Blog
There it is! It’s that simple! It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate or a long, running list. In fact, it shouldn’t be. Think of it this way: these should be just a few habits you can form to set your day on the right course. You want to develop these habits so that even if you had to go out of town on a business trip or you went on vacation with your family, you’d still want to implement your morning routine to get your day on the right foot.
I’ll be back here tomorrow with my experiences and thoughts from Day Ten! And don’t forget, if you still haven’t gotten your hands on a copy of the Make Over Your Mornings e-course, you can do that here.
What 3-5 things made it into your morning routine?