I hate using the "F word" but fall is in the air. The leaves have started to change color, the days are shorter, and the mornings are cool. The kids are back to school and the chaos of summer is a distant memory.
Fall is my favorite season, I feel like it’s a natural time to reset & reintroduce routines. If you are a control freak like me you love routines, to do lists, and schedules.
It makes me feel in control.
But if you are like me, routines fall by the wayside during the summer as we try to make the most of every minute.
Are your mornings peaceful or completely chaotic? Are you always exhausted, hitting snooze over and over again, leaving you late and scrambling to get out the door?
Do you wake up check your phone and immediately your mind is flooded with all the things you need to do paralyzing you panic?
Are you racing around waking up children, getting breakfast, making lunches while everyone seems to be taking their lovely time and in no rush. So you lash out at your partner for not doing X, and run out of the house with your coffee in hand not sure if you remembered everything. On the way to dropping your kids off you put your hair in a ponytail and finish your make up while driving to the office.
This is no way to start your day!
Let’s face it we are all busy, have a lot of responsibilities and obligations, and often feel strapped for time. I can hear you saying to me, "Shasta, I don’t have time for a “F’n” routine. It’s just going to create more stress and guilt in my life when I can’t follow through."
Ok, I hear you…… let’s just start with baby steps.
Let’s just look at the BENEFITS of it.
Science states that a morning routine can make all the difference and has numerous benefits such as:
Prepares you for your day
How you spend the morning will influences your mindset for the rest of your day
Increases your productivity
The organization and focus used to start your day creates a sense of value regarding your time that helps you from wasting it
Makes you feel in control
aka soothing that nervous system
Lowering your stress
Routines help you organize your time and responsibilities decreasing worry & rushing
Managing stress improves your emotional & physical health by decreasing your risk of developing burnout, mental illness, heart disease, high blood pressure & diabetes
Developing Healthy Habits
When you have mastered your morning routine, it’s much easier to avoid bad habits and to develop healthy ones
Boosts your energy levels
Prevent you from hitting snooze and the routine itself gets you up and going
Improves your relationships
Lowers stress & frustration which leads us to snap at our loved ones
A morning routine also makes the schedule known to everyone and lays out everyone’s responsibilities clearly
When you have the same routine every day, it’s much more unlikely you’ll forget something
Improves your confidence
When you’re calm and collected, you naturally feel more confident. Plus, better time management means you can accomplish more and take time for personal care without rushing. Giving you time to do you hair & make up, or choose the right outfit for the day which makes you feel great and improves your self esteem
There are varied ideas on the types of daily habits to include in your routine, but most agree that how we begin our day has a tremendous impact on how the rest of the day goes.
Let’s talk about PURPOSE!
A morning routines isn’t about getting up at 5:30 am so you can cram more into your day. It’s about allowing yourself to begin your day with confidence, peace, and a positive attitude.
What that looks like is up to you.
First, we need to understand out WHY.
Knowing your WHY helps us understand out internal motivation.
A strong WHY is essential for:
Giving us a reason to get out of bed & keeping us motivated
Developing successful habits that help us achieve our goals
Keeping us going when we face road blocks or challenges
You might already have an idea of what routine you want to try but below are some examples of WHY's and their potential habits .
Make your bed
Wear something you love (nice panties)
Recite self affirmations
Give yourself a High Five in the mirror ( Mel Robbins)
Write your to do list
No screens in the morning for at least 2 hours
Taking your morning supplements
Get out in the sun
Drink a big glass of water in the morning
Read something inspiring
Write a Gratitude list
Now let’s talk STRATEGY!
How do we start a new routine and have it stick?
We have all been there, it’s Sunday night and we have created a plan the following plan:
Get up at 5 am
Exercise for 1 hour
Make a health breakfast
Meditate for 30 mins
Shower & get ready for work
Plan daily schedule/to do list
Get kids ready for school
School drop off
And do all of this with a smile on your face and with a Zen like attitude!
The reality is that we don’t even make it through the first day and we give up and feel frustrated. So how do we do this realistically? If you haven’t read Atomic Habits, I highly recommend it. Here are James Clear’s tips on how to build new habits/routines.
Start small, like tiny
Just start with one new habit at a time, once that becomes automatic then add something new
Make it stupid easy
So easy you don’t need motivation or willpower to do it.
Don’t overwhelm yourself & set yourself up for failure by creating unrealistic goals/expectations.
3. Focus on the 1%
Rather than trying to do something perfect at the beginning, start small and gradually improve.
Focusing on improving by 1% per week
Eg.. start walking once a week
4. Build habits into chunks
Don’t overwhelm yourself by increasing your current habit, instead break it down.
Eg. Instead of meditating for 20 minutes – do two 10 minutes sessions
5. Habit Stack
Pair your new habit with an automatic habit or a reward (like watching your favorite show while on the treadmill)
6. Prepare for failure (it will happen)
Let go of all or nothing mentality
Identify what situations will through you off track and then create a plan to prevent this
Identify your excuses
Show yourself Self Compassion – just get back on track
The key is to not miss more than 2 days in a row
7. Be Patient, do things you can sustain
Do less than you originally planned
Habits are the foundation to Success!
Habits should feel good!
Habits should bring you peace, confidence, and a positive attitude.