Lately, I’ve seen a lot of bloggers sharing tips to make mornings go more more smoothly along with their morning routines and you know what? I’ve found myself feeling a little guilty and getting defensive. Why? Because of what they’re doing that I’m not. They share their reasons and I start feeling like their choices are a commentary on my choices.
Sound familiar? (If not, check out numbers 6 and 7 here.)
Y’all, why do we do this to ourselves? I’m guessing that all of those bloggers shared about their morning routines because it works for them. I bet none of them were implying that I’m a slacker if I don’t do what they do. Do we ever let go of the comparison trap and the unnecessary feelings of guilt and defensiveness that accompany it?
With that in mind, I thought I’d share my morning routine with you for what it’s worth . No tips. Nothing deep and meaningful. Just another perspective.
I try to get up no later than 7:30 most days. I’ve figured out that that’s my sweet spot. If I sleep later, my productivity takes a big hit.
If I don’t workout first thing in the morning, it’s not going to get done. Period. My workouts aren’t as intense as they used to be. (Which is probably why I’ve regained some of the weight I lost…but I’m still plugging away at trying to get back down to where I was). Still, I feel better if I do something. So, most days I walk on the treadmill while indulging in a little Big Bang Theory on DVD or do a yoga workout.
Most days it’s walking because I’m still on auto-pilot first thing in the morning, but yoga is excellent for relieving the back and hip pain I sometimes have.
I typically spend about 30 minutes working out. That’s down from what I used to do, but I’m guessing it’s more than some of you feel you have time for right now. If you want to add a workout to your day and all you have time for is a 15 minute walk around the block, take that walk and be proud of yourself for moving, not guilty about not doing more.
You know how some people can’t function without their morning coffee? I can’t function without my morning shower – and I’ll take that just shy of scalding hot, thank you very much.
I wash, dry, and style my hair most days because that’s what it takes to make me feel ready to face the day. I usually choose Monday or Tuesday as a ponytail day, but the rest of the week, I fix my hair. I often say I can have no make-up or bad hair, but not both at the same time, hence the fixing of the hair.
Getting dressed means Capri jeans and a tank top or t-shirt in the summer and jeans or yoga pants with t-shirt (usually long-sleeves) in the winter. No shoes in the house. Ever. I’m a Southern girl, y’all. I have sandals by the door that I’ll slip on to go outside, but in the summer half the time I don’t even bother.
Bible study is like exercise – if I don’t do it first thing, it doesn’t get done. I’m very happy to have finally gotten in a good Bible study routine. About a year ago,I started an accountability group with some friends. That along with finding a Bible study method that I actually look forward to doing each day has resulted in the most consistency I’ve had in this area since becoming a mom.
I am enjoying Journal and Doodle Through the Bible so much that I know have to give myself a cut-off time most mornings or I run out of time to work before getting the kids up for school. I love listening to Our God radio on Pandora while I work on the doodling part of my Bible study.
As a work-at-home mom, I’ve tried to develop some consistency with my schedule so that I’m not working all the time. I try to make sure that I have an hour to work before waking the kids most mornings.
Because my kids are both teens working independently now, I do tend to continue working throughout the day while they’re doing their schoolwork, but I try to make sure that I do what absolutely has to be done and what requires the most uninterrupted focus before they get up.
I wake the kids around 11:00 each day. Yes, 11:00. I know many of you are almost done by that time, but that’s the time that works best with my teens’ internal clocks. They’ve been night owls who focus best after lunch for many years…but this is about my schedule, not theirs. I’ll tackle theirs next week.
Did you notice some of the things I don’t do each day? I don’t make my bed. Yes, I like the way my room looks better when it’s made, but my husband works a weird shift and often likes to come home and take a nap in the afternoons. He feels like he’s messing up the bed if it’s made, so I assuage his guilt and save myself a few minutes in the mornings by not making the bed. We’re okay with that.
I don’t eat breakfast. Yes, I know it’s the most important meal of the day, but I’m not hungry when I first wake up. By the time I get hungry, it’s almost lunch time, so I just eat an early lunch most days.
I don’t put on make-up and I don’t get dressed down to my shoes. I do count yoga pants as getting dressed some days, though I’d change to jeans if I needed to go out.
I don’t get up and feed, change, and dress babies which gives me more time to workout or work than those of you who do. I do feed the dogs and cats, but that’s really not the same at all.
What I do and don’t do shouldn’t make you feel either superior or inferior. It definitely shouldn’t make you feel judged or guilty. You know why? Because you’re not me and I’m not you. My morning routine consists of the things that this season of life allows me to do to feel productive and ready to face the day. That’s all your morning routine needs to consist of, too.
What are one or two things that you have to do each morning to feel ready for the day?
images courtesy of deposit photos