Are you all ready and raring to go, or are you still reeling from your family’s morning routine, or lack thereof? Do you start the morning stressed out, or find yourself constantly running late?
If like me, you find yourself constantly on the run – here are my tips for tackling (and surviving) your mornings AND getting your family out of the door in an orderly fashion.
- Start the night before. Ideally, you should know what you’re wearing the night before. Your handbag and lunch should be ready to roll. All school bags should be packed and homework checked. This saves that 7.30 a.m. panic about suddenly needing an onion, 8 ounces of minced beef and a can of tomato sauce for food tech, which no-one EVER has just when they need it.
- Let your kids be responsible. From quite a young age, kids can remember that Tuesday is gym day, and pack their gym kit for that day. Do remind and encourage, but don’t make a habit of rescuing them every time. If they know that they will have to sit out gym when they forget their kit, they just might surprise you and remember it next time. Learning responsibility when it’s the easy things, like gym or library day, will make it easier for kids to keep track of the bigger things as they get older. You can help them by sticking a timetable up near to their school bag.
- Get up early. This seems obvious, but if you’re struggling every morning it may be that you and your family all need earlier bedtimes… And earlier waking times. Get everyone to bed a little earlier every night, until you find your mornings more chirpy and less sluggish.
- Breakfast rules! It doesn’t take that much longer for everyone to sit and have a healthy breakfast. A good breakfast of protein and carbs will give the whole family the energy and focus they need for a really productive morning.
- Start your time machine. Okay, we haven’t got one of those! But, I do have my big kitchen clock set five minutes fast, and that’s the time we go by in the mornings. And it works, especially for kids who are just learning about time.
- A place for everything. Schoolbags should have a spot. Keys in one place. Shoes always on the shoe rack. Ties on the hook behind the door. If everything is in its place, we avoid those long mornings of, “Where’s my tie? Where’s my chemistry book? Where’s my brain? MUUUUMMMM, I can only find one shoe!” I am sorry to say that certain members of my family have yet to master the art of putting things in their place.
- Hugs for all. There is always time for a hug before heading out the door. Studies show that when we give hugs we reap the benefits of oxytocin, the feel-good hormone. So start the day by lowering stress and telling your kids you love them. If nothing else, it’s a good way of checking that everyone has brushed their teeth!
What tips would you add?