It’s really hard to carve out time for yourself as a mom. And sometimes, even when you WANT to take some time to yourself, there’s simply no time available! So what’s a desperate mom to do? I’ll tell you! You’ve come to the right place! What you do is… you save your sanity with an early morning routine! You create the time you need for yourself and make the most of it.
Oh, I already know what you are thinking, perhaps even saying, out loud. “I’m not one of THOSE early morning people. I like my sleep too much. I could never get up early just to have time to myself.” Well, I’m here to tell you… you CAN be one of those morning people. You can miss a little sleep in the name of sanity. You too, can have a highly coveted morning routine that keeps your sanity in tact each day.
Reformed Morning Person
And trust me, I wasn’t always a morning person. I think kids change that for a lot of people. As those little critters have a habit of waking up at the crack of dawn most of the time. Or at least my two little boys do! And when they are up, they are UP for the day and they don’t stop. Ever. All. Day. Long. Always moving, mostly running. Shew.
And before you know it, the whole day turns into a whirlwind and you’ve not had a minute to yourself all day. UNLESS you’ve taken some early morning time to get your day going. So, I’m here to tell you, you can save your sanity by waking up early in the morning. And I’ll tell you exactly how to do it!
The Importance of Time for Yourself
In our mommy daily hustle, it’s super easy to overlook how important it is to take a little time for yourself each day. In all honesty, I think it’s one of the most important things you can do for yourself. Taking good care of yourself is always worth the time, and the dividends it produces are amazing. Read this article if you’d like further detail on creating a daily self-care routine. You can’t be a Supermom and tend to your family all the time if you don’t first take time to make sure you are caring for yourself as well. I have compiled a daily self-care list to keep you on track each week!
Finding the Time
So, you’ve decided you need some time for yourself each day. So now the challenge is, where do you find it? Bedtimes and naptimes for babies and toddlers can get tricky and aren’t always dependable. Days can get crazy.
And honestly, by the end of the day, I’m exhausted, so evenings are out for me. I just want to lay on the couch, have a glass of wine or some ice cream and watch mindless television (for the 5-10 minutes I’m going to be able to stay awake) and take a moment to unwind from my day. It’s also the few minutes I have with my husband at the end of the day to spend time with him. I love that time of day too and I don’t want to take away from it. So what does that leave?
But the early mornings?? Those are wide open! So there’s the time block for me. I’m rested (as rested as a mom of a 6-year-old and 4-year-old will be) and alert (given enough diet coke or coffee) and fresh for the day.
I have come to cherish my alone time in the morning and I try to guard this routine for myself. It’s a big part of what helps me stay balanced and sane. (I might be playing it a little fast and loose with the word “sane.”) You moms know… you’ve been there. It saves some sanity and it helps me be calmer and less stressed. And it’s time for just me. To do anything I want!
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How to Start an Early Morning Routine
So, how do we get to be a morning person? Well, trust me, it’s easier than you think! I wouldn’t recommend starting with waking up 2 hours earlier than normal or anything crazy. But maybe start with 15 minutes earlier. And build it from there. You’ll find the right balance of the amount of time you want for yourself versus how much earlier you are willing to wake up each day relatively quickly. Need more ideas on how to get started getting up earlier? Try this article from Entrepreneur.com.
A little preparation is key to making the new routine run smoothly! I make sure I lay out everything I need the night before so to disturb as little as possible when I get up in the mornings. No need to wake up the entire house! (In fact, the goal is NOT to wake up the entire house!)
Wake Up Call
So the alarm goes off, and you pop out of bed. I’m working on being a reformed snooze button hitter myself. I’ve gotten much better at it out of necessity. I get up WAY early (think 4 am) in order to work AND have my routine for time to myself. Hitting the snooze button at 4 am? That’s just bad humanship, especially if your spouse is sleeping right there for another 2-3 hours! So, there’s no need to wake up the entire house by hitting the snooze button.
The solution I’ve found is that I wear my Fitbit to sleep because it has silent alarms on it that only vibrate on your wrist, thus disturbing no one but you, which is the goal! I do have an “oh crap” alarm on my phone for a half-hour later just in case I ignored the Fitbit or if for some reason it didn’t go off.
To Shower? Or Not?
Do whatever works for you! Sometimes I’ll shower, sometimes I will just wash my face. It all depends on what’s coming up in my day. If I know I’m going to exercise early in the day, I’ll just skip showering until later. I’ll just wash my face and run a warm washcloth around if I want to really wake up. I throw on my clothes and I’m off to the races!
The Need for Caffeine:
Next up, I’m going to need to fuel the body with some energy until my own kicks in! So, I’m heading for the coffee maker. You could do tea, soda, water, whatever works for you! I like to have an iced coffee and a glass of ice water to alternate. If I’m hungry, I’ll grab a small bite of something to eat. And then I’m ready to roll!
My favorite thing is to make an iced coffee on my Ninja Coffee Bar! It has an ice brew setting that works out perfectly every time!
I’m awake, I’m somewhat to totally clean, dressed and have caffeine in hand. Now what?
ANYTHING YOU WANT! Now’s the time to do whatever you want for the time you have! I’ve got suggestions below!
Here’s a few of my favorite things to do:
I usually do this first. Sometimes I find that my mind is racing with all the things to do that day or to-dos I suddenly remember. I will grab a notebook and take a few minutes to just write down everything that comes to mind. I can make a list of whatever it is later, but for the time being, I just get it all out on paper.
I really enjoy journaling. I find it very helpful to get my thoughts out on paper. Just like doing the brain dump I mentioned above, this is like a brain dump, but for your thoughts and emotions. It’s a place to vent your frustrations. Complain and fuss. It’s a place to celebrate wins! A place to dream your dreams. I love journaling time and I try to do it every morning.
It doesn’t matter if you prefer to do it on the computer, or if you are a hand written journal type of gal. The important thing is to just get your thoughts out on paper.
Everyone has a preference when it comes to journals! Some like lined pages. Others want blank pages. People that like to be driven crazy like the pages with those little dots on them. Try and see what is best for you! These all come in such cute colors and are hardcovers!
- Paperage Journal Blank Page Notebook
- Paperage Dotted Journal Bullet Notebook
- Paperage Lined Journal Notebook
Read a fun book. Not one about parenting, or making myself better, or how to run a business. An actual work of fiction that I love to read. This can get tricky though! If the book gets really good, it’s SO hard to put it down when it’s time to get going for the day.
Or maybe you DO actually want to read a self-help book. My stack I keep handy includes the subjects of parenting, losing weight, time management, running a business, potty training, and gardening. I have a huge stack and I just rotate around as needed or desired. Usually, the fiction always wins though!
My Favorite Self-Help Books:
I use the Headspace app. It’s a guided meditation, and I find that it helps me stay calm(er) through my days and relaxes me in the morning. It usually takes about 10 minutes or less. This might not be for everyone. More than once, I’ve definitely fallen asleep doing the mediation! The app has a few free meditations within the free part of the app, and beyond that, you can subscribe to more specific areas that you might want to further develop. I like to do the stress management and healthy eating meditations on the app.
Sometimes I’ll simply watch a TV show by myself. There are some shows my husband isn’t a fan of and doesn’t want to watch with me. I get it – he’s got a few favorite shows that I’d rather stick a fork in my eye than watch. So sometimes I’ll catch up and watch a show or two. Or a cooking show. Food Network is my favorite thing. I can watch someone else make all the things I’m never going to take the time to make!
Maybe a little yoga, pilates, or some simple stretching. I keep it light and easy for sure. I save my cardio for later in the day for a quick work-out video or a walk with the kids. But you do whatever you want! It’s your time!
Sometimes, I end up going back to sleep on the couch – and that’s ok too!
Sometimes, I take time to write and work on this blog. Supermom Shuffle is my happy place and it’s my passion. So diving into this world first thing in the morning seriously fills my bucket in such a good way.
In short, do anything you want!
This time is yours. Do whatever you want. Whatever relaxes you. There’s no judgment. No rules. No guidelines. There is NO idea is too small or dumb. It’s YOUR time. You are going to be the one drawing peace and strength from it. So you sure better make it your own!
Take it from this reformed snoozer, once you get in the habit, getting up a little earlier isn’t even all that hard. It’s all about the routine that your body gets used to. Start with 15 minutes earlier wake-up times and increase it by five or ten minutes every few days. Within a week or two, you’ll be at your desired wake up time!
Wrap Up – Save Your Sanity With an Early Morning Routine
I truly believe that you can save your sanity with an early morning routine. It’s the time of the day I cherish and look forward to each day. I guard my routine and keep it consistent as often as possible. Even in the mornings when getting out of bed doesn’t feel like it’s the thing you want to do, I always feel better for having gotten a little time to myself. I hope you’ll give it a try and see how it works for you! Now, go save your sanity and start planning your new morning time for yourself!
- Daily Self-Care Routine Checklist
- The 5 Doctors Every Woman Needs To See
- Overcoming Overwhelm: A Mommy’s Guide
- There’s Just No Time for Self Care