What we do with our first couple hours determines the tone, mood, and productivity level for the rest of the day. These 7 early morning tasks will help you make the most of your days!
Having a solid morning routine in place is the key to having a productive day. In fact, what we do with those first couple hours determines how much we’ll get done throughout the rest of the day.
But what exactly should we be doing when we first wake up in the morning to promote maximum productivity and satisfaction?
There are 7 things I find make the most difference, so I try to do these as often as possible.I try to wake up early and do them before my kids wake up. It’s really tough, but it makes me a happier and better mom! My journey to this morning routine started with reading The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod. Over time, I adapted his system to best meet my needs as a mom.
My morning routine goes as follows:
Waking up early is REALLY hard for me. I’ve always been a believer in putting God first and reading my scriptures and saying my prayers right when I wake up, but I find that when I’m waking up before 7am, this is a bad idea. I just fall asleep 😴. So now I workout first to give me that zap of energy (and ensure I don’t crawl back into bed).
Even if you like to workout later in the day–like going on a walk with the kids or taking a class at the gym–I think it’s beneficial to do something to get your blood pumping when you first get out of bed. Do 20 jumping jacks or 10 push-ups. Run up and down the stairs a couple of times.
Or you can do your full workout here. I find it’s best for me to do this option. It’s harder to find excuses when you just get up and do it right away. Yes, I oftentimes plan to do more of a workout later (like a long walk with Roxy), but if the rest of my day goes downhill, I know I got a workout in–even if it was only 10 or 15 minutes long.
2. Pray (or meditate)
Next, I pray. If you’re not the praying type, you can do meditation or breathing exercises here. Just sit in silence and try to have a calming experience. For me, there’s nothing more calming than prayer. I love talking with God, sharing my gratitude and hopes and fears and dreams with Him and asking for His guidance in my life. I look forward to these quiet moments in the early morning and the clarity that they bring.
3. Read Scriptures (or a personal development book)
Take a few minutes to read something positive and uplifting. For me, that’s my scriptures. But if you aren’t religious, that’s fine. Read a few pages of a positive, life-changing book. You can even start with The Miracle Morning. Spend a few minutes filling your mind with important words to start your day off on the right foot.
I’m a huge believer in affirmations. Seriously, if you’ve held back because it sounds weird (I understand, I promise. I was there once, too), you need to give them a try. They are life-changing!
There are apps that guide you through affirmations. You can buy cards or journals that help you. Or you can write your own. I personally wrote a two page series of personalized affirmations for myself and what I want in my life, and it’s one of the best things I ever did for myself.
Saying these affirmations every morning (out loud when I can) is HUGE. It helps me keep my priorities straight, make forward progress on my goals, and remember what’s important to me personally. And this, in turn, helps me create my dream life.
I’m very particular about the way that I journal, and it’s definitely not the traditional method. I focus on brain dumping (getting all my stress out), gratitude, and goals. I wrote a post all about my journaling routine here if you want more details about how to create a purposeful journaling routine for yourself.
6. Get Ready for the Day
Okay, I know what you’re thinking, “But I’m a stay-at-home mom. Why would I get ready in the early morning? Isn’t that the perk of this whole thing, that I don’t have to get ready every day?” Well, yes. But also no.
Getting ready signals to our brain that we’re ready to work. If we stay in our pajamas and put zero effort into our appearance, it’s going to be a lot harder to have a productive day. Plus, what if something comes up and we have to go somewhere? Then we’re rushing around trying to get dressed and brush our teeth.
Just try it for a week and see how you feel. I’m not saying you have to get all glammed up and spend 45 minutes doing your make-up and hair each morning. But do something. Brush your teeth. Wash your face. Put on a little bit of mascara. Brush your hair and maybe run a straightener through it. Get dressed. Then watch your productivity (and your mood) escalate!
7. Listen to Something You Enjoy (podcast, music, or audiobook)
I do this while I workout, and again while I get ready for the day. More often than not I’m listening to a podcast, but sometimes I turn on some music and dance around (I often do this at breakfast with the kids). Just like number 3, this fills your mind with positive or fun things and adds a little joy to your day. Music and uplifting words are huge mood boosters!
When you wake-up early and do these 7 things, you set your day up for success. You’re now ready to tackle your to-do list and spend quality time with your little ones. Plus, if the rest of the day goes downhill, look at how much you’ve already accomplished! You’ve already had a successful day before the kids even woke up. Supermom!
This whole process takes me about an hour and fifteen minutes. So I wake-up at about 6:15 and I’m done by 7:30, just in time to get the kids up and ready for school.
What’s the first thing you do when you wake-up in the morning?
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