If you’ve ever been startled awake in the morning to a child staring you in the face demanding breakfast or informing you that their bed is wet…
You know that how you start your morning has a HUGE impact on the rest of your day. In fact, your morning is one of the most important parts of your daily mom routine.
It determines if you feel grumpy and 2 steps behind…or if you’re calm, patient, and productive.
Your morning sets the tone for everything that follows.
And in this post, we’re going to cover everything you need to know to create an incredible mom morning routine so you can start your day happy and energized.
Which means that you’ll be able to crush your goals, conquer your to-do list and create the happy, healthy, organized life that you’re craving.
Table of Contents
THE PERFECT MOM MORNING ROUTINE
If you’re wondering exactly what your morning routine should be, the reality is that there’s no one size fits all solution.
There’s no one perfect mom morning routine that’s amazing for everyone. The simple reason is that we all have different personalities, interests, and situations.
Plus, the perfect mom morning routine for you will likely change depending on your kid’s age/stage and what’s going on in your life.
The trick is to creating the right morning routine for YOU. And that’s what we’re going to be doing in this post.
And to help you plan out your perfect routine, you can also download a morning routine checklist and template at the bottom of this post.
HOW TO PREPARE YOUR MORNING ROUTINE
Regardless of whether you’re a stay-at-home mom or a working mom, the purpose of your morning routine is the same: to feel centered, focused, and ready for the day.
It’s to start the day on your terms as opposed to feeling like you’re reacting to what’s coming at you. And how that looks depends on you and your situation.
Here are some things to consider before you build your ideal mom morning routine.
- What are your goals? What kind of life do you want?
- Are you a night owl or a morning person?
- What kind of daily habits are you trying to develop?
- How much time will you need to go through your ideal routine?
Be sure to give yourself enough time so that you don’t feel frantic in the mornings or like you’re trying to stuff a bunch in. This the time to lay the foundation for the day, keep your mood and outlook in the right place.
SHOULD YOU WAKE UP BEFORE YOUR KIDS?
This is the big question for many sleep-deprived moms. And the answer is YES only if:
- You want to
- It’s not very difficult
- And you can still get enough sleep
While moms generally want to wake up earlier, it’s not a necessity to having a great morning routine. Ultimately, you have to decide what’s worth it to you.
You can have a perfectly lovely morning routine that doesn’t mean waking up crazy early.
If your kids are at a demanding age, waking up even 15 minutes before them can be very helpful. Just to give you time to center yourself.
But at the end of the day, you want to create a sustainable mom morning routine. Decide what can be sustainable to you.
If you’re a night owl, don’t try and suddenly wake up crazy early every day. That’s setting yourself up to fail.
Which, of course, will just make you feel terrible.
This is not to say that you can’t wake up earlier than you are currently, or get up before your kids. (In fact, I’m a HUGE fan of getting up before your kids.)
But if you want to wake up earlier, then be smart about how you do it and set realistic goals and expectations for yourself.
For tips and strategies, check out How to Wake up Early in the Morning (Even if You’re a Night Owl.
STEPS TO BUILDING THE BEST MOM MORNING ROUTINE
With those things in mind, you’re now ready to actually start actually planning your ideal daily morning routine.
1. Determine Your Motivation
The first thing you want to do is determine your motivation and yours goals for your morning routine.
What do you want to get out of your morning?
Do you want to get a lot done right off the bat? Do you want to have calm alone time before the hustle and bustle of the day?
To get a clear picture of what you want, I suggest grabbing a piece of paper or opening up a Google doc and just start writing about what you’d like your life to look life.
Just write whatever comes to you (without editing or judging) for a few minutes pondering the following questions:
- What does your day look like?
- What kinds of daily habits do you have?
- How do you feel?
With this picture of what you want your life to be like, you can get a pretty good idea of what you want out of your morning routine.
2. Set Your Bedtime & Wake Up Times
Next, you want to determine your wake up time. Remember to pick something realistic (and sustainable) that still gives you time to fulfill your goals.
And then you need to set your bedtime. And then keep it!
Because the truth is, your morning really starts the night before. Unless you get enough sleep, your morning will never be what you want it to be no matter what time you choose to wake up.
Research is clear that the vast majority of adults (>99%) need at least 7-9 hours of sleep.
Getting less than that on a regular basis leads to a host of health issues like:
- More cravings for sweet, salty, and starchy food
- Higher levels of the hunger hormone ghrelin
- Lower levels of the appetite controlling hormone leptin
- 50% higher risk for obesity
- Reduced immunity to illness
- 3x risk of type 2 diabetes
- Greater risk of depression, irritability, anxiety, forgetfulness
- 3x more likely to catch a cold
- And shortened lifespan
And outside of all those scary things, lack of sleep just makes you crabby and less productive.
Therefore, be sure that you’re getting enough sleep when you set your bedtime and wake up times.
To help, check out The Perfect Bedtime Routine for Moms to Relax, Unwind & Sleep Well.
3. Set up Your Alarm Clock
Once you’ve set a bedtime that ensures you get enough sleep, it’s time to look at your morning alarm clock.
If you want your morning routine to start at a certain time, it’s essential that you set up your alarm clock so that:
- you’ll actually get up and not hit “snooze” until the end of time
- you aren’t in a bad mood the minute you hear the alarm clock sound
Personally, the best alarm clock I’ve found is this awesome light alarm clock from Amazon. It’s what I currently use. Here’s why I LOVE it:
- The light gently wakes you up before the alarm even sounds.
- There are several alarm sounds including ocean noises, birds, and other pleasant noises that don’t make me want to throw the alarm out the window.
- You can set it to be completely dark during the night so no annoying light (which research shows disturbs your sleep) is staring at you from your night stand.
But here are a few other options to consider:
Put the alarm across the room.
This serves 2 purposes–it gets lights and technology away from you when you’re trying to sleep (thereby improving sleep quality) and it makes you actually get up and out of bed to turn it off. This was a game changer for me.
Use the Step Out App.
This app is completely genius. If you’re one to hit snooze a million times without even thinking, this is the app for you.
You can set it up so that in order to turn off the alarm, you actually have to take 10 or 20 steps. And by that point, you are awake!
4. Prep the night before
Like I said, your morning starts the night before. And preparing for your morning the night before is a powerful tool to build a productive mom morning routine.
Therefore, as part of your evening routine, consider building in the following practices:
- Set out your clothes for the next day. That way to can put them on without having to think. If you want to workout, set out your workout clothes)
- Plan your day so you can start the day knowing what you want to accomplish. Here’s a great daily planning template you can use.
- Set out anything else you might need. Like your keys, purse, the book you want to read etc.
So what do you need to do the night before to prepare for your morning?
5. Create Morning Rules for Kids.
Since kids tend to be early risers, you may want to have some “Morning Rules” that allow you to go through your mom morning routine even if your kids wake up early.
These might include staying in their bedroom and quietly playing until a certain time. This kid’s alarm clock is great for that as you can set it to turn green when it’s okay for them to leave the room.
Or if they wake-up early and want breakfast, they are limited to a few simple, easy-to-grab breakfast foods you provide. These might be breakfast bars, toaster waffles, or cereal.
In our home, I always make whole grain muffins in bulk and freeze them so they can just pull out a muffin, microwave it for 20 seconds and have a quick breakfast or snack.
(Here are some of our favorite healthy make-ahead breakfast recipes.)
For more on building a morning routine with kids, check out 6 Secrets to a Stress-Free Morning With Kids.
6. Get out of bed when your alarm rings
While this may seem an obvious one, popping out of bed right when your alarm rings isn’t necessarily natural or easy to some people.
Therefore, you’ve got to train yourself to pop out of bed right when your alarm sounds. I recommend popping out of bed and heading straight to the bathroom to brush your teeth and drink a glass of water.
DAILY MORNING ROUTINE BASIC PRACTICES
With realistic wake up time, you’re ready to start really building your perfect morning routine. You want to pick activities that set you up for an awesome day and align with the life you want to create.
To begin, you’ll want to start with your morning routine basics.
These are the things you should do no matter what. Whether you wake up late and are in a rush or you’ve got time for a more intentional routine.
While these can be whatever works for you, there are 5 simple habits that I highly recommend including in your routine.
THE 5 BASIC MORNING HABITS YOU NEED
Here are the 5 morning habits that I highly recommend as your morning routine basics.
Not only are they super simple and healthy, but it only takes a few minutes to do all 5. Meaning you can do them even on mornings you are in a bit of a rush, and they’ll help you feel physically ready for the day to start.
1. No phone until your morning routine is complete.
I know just how easy it is to pick up the phone off the nightstand, open up email or a news app and get sucked in for 30 minutes of mindless scrolling and reading.
Frankly, the quickest way to derail a productive morning is to look at your phone.
Your phone and all those fancy apps are designed to steal your focus and attention (that’s how they make money).
But your morning routine is about preparing yourself to meet the world on your terms.
Checking your smartphone (even for “just a minute”) take your focus from preparing yourself to about 50 gazillion other things. Plus, it wastes a lot of your precious morning time.
Wait until AFTER you finish your morning routine to your check your email, text messages, breaking news, social media, and whatever else you check.
And not only will you feel better and be more productive, you’ll realize that you didn’t even miss anything by waiting a bit to look at your phone.
2. Make Your Bed
I used to 100% be on the “making my bed is a waste of time” wagon, so get it if you’re not convinced.
But hear me out.
Making your bed within the first few minutes of being awake gives you an immediate sense of accomplishment. Which puts you in a more productive mindset from the moment you wake up.
And not only do you get a boost from simply doing something productive, but you’ve also made your bedroom a more relaxing place to be.
Just try it.
3. Brush Your Teeth
It’s good hygiene and it helps to wake you up and feel alert and feel ready for the day.
4. Drink a Glass of Water.
It’s so simple, yet it gives you so many benefits. Drinking a glass of water:
- Helps you to wake up
- Gets your digestive system revved
- And gives you a jolt of energy
To make this easier, you may want to set out a glass or water bottle the night before so all you have to do is grab it and drink.
Don’t force yourself to drink a huge glass of water if it feels uncomfortable. Just start with 6-8 oz and see how you feel.
5. Get Dressed.
The reality is that when we get dressed at the start of your day, we mentally to shift gears to dive into our day. When we get dressed, we leave sleep behind and put on clothes that signal it’s time to DO something.
If we put on exercise clothes, it signals it’s time to move. If we put on the clothes we wear to work, our brains start shifting into “work” mode.
Getting dressed puts us in the space to get things done.
(You can also check out more tips on creating a productive morning on this Porch article I contributed to.)
INTENTIONAL MOM MORNING ROUTINE IDEAS
With your basics down, you can now build your routine into something more powerful that sets up for a really fabulous day.
And honestly, there are endless ideas for what you can do in the morning. And ultimately, only you an know what’s best for you.
However, there are some pretty tried and true morning routine practices that help you with a mentally and physically healthy start your day.
But no matter what, keep it simple and doable. You want to pick just a few tasks that you want to build into your morning routine.
1. Move Your Body/Stretch
Exercise helps us battle stress, improves sleep, helps us be happier. It’s truly miraculous. It isn’t just a task you’re supposed to do, when you can get into the perspective that it’s a gift, it’ll help build the habit.
This could be stretching, going for a walk, doing some pushups. The more I learn about the benefits of exercise, the more I look at it as a daily pill I need to take to simply feel good.
Note that it doesn’t have to take long. It could just be a walk around your neighborhood with your kids or a short workout video.
Also, you’ll be more likely to workout if you pick something YOU ENJOY.
Note that “move your body” doesn’t have to mean “go for a 3-mile run” or “go to cross fit”. It could mean:
- going for a 5-minute walk around the block
- folding a load of laundry
The key is to just get your body moving and going for the day. Pick an activity you enjoy and start doing it for 10 to 15 minutes. And build from there.
2. Read something uplifting.
If you’re religious, a fabulous time to dig into religious texts. Or to dive into uplifting books that help you feel good, focused, and improve your life.
3. Plan Your Day
This helps you get focused and ready to be productive. You can make a to-do list/daily plan or review the list you made the night before.
Don’t write down everything, but focus on the most important tasks. Don’t write things you know you will do anyways.
4. Journal/Gratitude Journal
Personally, journaling and free-writing is one of the quickest ways to center myself and figure out what I need to do for the day. Open a google doc or use a paper notebook.
You could start the daily practice of writing down a few things you’re grateful for. Science shows that gratitude makes us happier.
5. Meditate/Pray/Deep breathing.
If you’re a parent, this one can be a little hard, especially if there are small humans out and about while you run through your routine. But even a few deep breaths or moments of silence can have tremendous benefits.
WHAT TO DO IF YOUR KID STARTS WAKING UP EARLIER
It is a truth, universally acknowledged that the minute you decide to wake up earlier so you can have some “me time” your child is going to just happen to wake up earlier too.
It just happens. Especially at the very start of your new routine. And let me explain why:
When we sleep, we’ve been trained to ignore common noises. Our bodies have evolved to recognize that these noises don’t pose a danger.
Which is why if you live near a train track, you stop hearing the trains at night. It’s why your husband stops hearing when the baby cries wanting to be nursed.
But when we’re introduced to NEW sounds, then our body is primed to pick those up and react because it may be a danger.
So when you start to wake up earlier, even if you’re super quiet, there will be new sounds in your home that may wake your kid.
Here’s how to deal with that:
- Be as quiet as possible. And don’t have any light disturb your child.
- Recognize that it should be temporary. Once it becomes “normal noise”, your child will probably begin to sleep through it and go back to their regular sleep schedule.
- When your child wakes up, direct them back to bed. If they’re too awake, try to keep them busy with something else and establish that this is really their sleep time. Don’t make it fun time with mama or this will be a regular thing.
- Sleep training. If it’s a baby, it’s just about training them back on the sleep schedule, if that’s your parenting style.
MOM MORNING ROUTINE CHECKLIST
To help you build the perfect morning routine for you, I’ve created this morning routine checklist & schedule template. The download included a checklist with several morning routine ideas as well as a morning schedule & checklist template that you can customize to build your morning routine and track your habits.
CREATE THE PERFECT MORNING ROUTINE
And that’s it! Whether you’re looking for a stay-at-home mom morning routine or a working mom morning routine, you’ve now got what you need to create the perfect routine for you.
Remember to start small and simple with the habits that resonate with you. if you want more help, you can also check out The Free 5-Day Morning Makeover Email Challenge.
You’ve got this!
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