Woke up late today. Missed my work out. Was rushed and frustrated while getting the kids dressed. My pants where wrinkled and I spilled smoothie on myself. Having a bad morning sets the tone for a bad day. So when we have a morning that doesn’t go as planned how do we correct ourselves and stop the downward spiral of negativity that could make our whole day a wash? I have had a morning like this one too many times. Here are 5 steps I am taking to make my mornings brighter, happier and more productive.
1) Get up early- I know, I know… your bed is so warm and cozy. Just a few more minutes? I was not having it either. I wanted to stay in my nice comfy bed, but my 4-year-old son had other plans. No matter what time we put him to bed he was up at 5:30 am, sometimes even 5:00…yes 5:00 am. I was not a happy camper. For about a year I fought against the little tyrant and rose each morning angry and grumpy. Then I finally decided to go with it.
By making it intentional a whole new world opened up for me. I was no longer getting up pissed off. I was getting up on purpose and found that I could fit in a working out. This intentional rising made me better prepared, more focused and with a much brighter outlook for the day.
2) Do your most arduous chore first thing in the morning – That’s right I said first thing. Get it over with. The longer you wait the more likely you will be to avoid getting it done. Then it becomes a project for tomorrow. For me, this task was working out. When I didn’t get it done in the morning, I would spend the day dreading my workout and found every excuse not to do it. No one likes the ominous feeling that accompanies procrastination. So before you ever get the chance to make an excuse , just get it done. This will go a long way in adding peace to your day by knowing, whatever your dreaded chore is, it is crossed off your to-do list.
3) Stop and rest (or meditate) – This is a little hypocritical for me seeing as I don’t meditate. I have tried but don’t get the restful effect that suppose to accompany it. I do understand the benefit of pressing pause on the hectic, rush rush pace that usually accompanies most mornings. Even if it is just for a few minutes or on your car ride to work. It helps to just sit, clear your head and reset your mind. If you can be still and close your eyes, just for a few minutes. Most importantly, slow down and remove yourself from the frenetic mind frame of the morning. It will work wonders towards facing your day more relaxed and at ease.
4) Set yourself up for success – By this I mean prep for the next day. Especially during the school year. I know it is so much easier to settle in on the couch and watch some TV after a long day of work. Trust me, you will be thankful. Prep the kids lunches the night before, layout your gym clothes (or heck, sleep in them), iron your work pants. Whatever it is get as much done as you can the night before and your morning will go a lot smoother.
5) Stay off the Internet! – It is a total time sucker. I know we all say we will just hop on to check our email or glance at the headlines, but two minutes can easily become 15 minutes. Before you know it your are running late.We have all been sucked in by the need to stare at a screen, update Facebook, send an email or finish an news article. But when we take an honest look at the media we are consuming, is it really very positive? Do we really want to hear about the political fights, international chaos, and tumbling stocks first thing in the morning. Don’t worry all the negative news will still be there in the afternoon. Why start your day off that way?