Monday through Friday my alarm is set to 5am. I usually get a wide eyed reaction when people hear that. Alone time is few and far between these days and if I have to wake up before the sun comes up to get it, so be it.
Honestly, waking up before my kids is the best thing I do for myself each day.
Being a parent is tough. I know I’m preaching to the choir with that one. When AG was younger, I would wake up when she did. She was my alarm clock. I’d get up, get her up and our day would start. From there on out, I was pretty much hers for the day. What I accomplished was usually based on her moods and how she slept. If she napped, I was able to shower. If it was a long nap, I may have been lucky enough to dry my hair. If she had a fussy day, there are chances my teeth weren’t brushed by the time hubs got home at night.
Around that time, I went from being a stay at home mom to a work at home mom, starting Simply Made with Love. My days became much more chaotic as I somehow had to figure out how to work, mom and wife all in the same day. I was exhausted and overwhelmed on a daily basis. I didn’t have much time for myself. I wasn’t finding the joy in everyday, I was rushing through it. It started all started to take a toll on me.
When I sat down and thought about why I felt the way I did, I determined it was because I was always rushed. From the minute I got out of bed, I was on the go. Doing one thing, thinking of what was next on the list, running around like a mad woman and a hot mess day in and out. During that time I was staying up until 11pm or midnight to work, which I know made me more tired the following day. I craved some down time and decided to try waking up earlier for some me time and to slow things down in the morning. I needed time to breathe, start my day with a clear head and a plan of action.
In the first few months, it was just 20 minutes earlier. In that 20 minutes, I showered and got dressed. That alone made a difference immediately. I felt better about myself, more put together, even if I was just in yoga pants instead of pajama bottoms. Some days I was even able to drink an entire hot cup of coffee. My microwave definitely felt neglected from me not having to reheat my coffee all morning long! It also helps that my husband gets up for Crossfit earlier than me. That is definitely added motivation to get my day started.
From there my wakeup time became earlier and earlier. I realized the more time I had to myself in the morning, the better my days started. Waking up early was the fuel I need to get through the day. Fuel for my heart, my mind and my soul. My saving grace.
Because of waking up early, I’m not as rushed so much throughout the day. I take more breaks to play with the kids. I get out the art supplies, build legit lego towers and don’t say no as much as I used to. Best of all, I have more patience with them.
Waking up early allows me to plan out my days and get focused. It also allows me to not have to work at night (most of the time) which gives me more uninterrupted time with my husband. Most of all, waking up early allows some time for me to focus on ME. In order to be the wife, mom, friend, daughter…I want to be, I have to invest in myself.
My Morning Routine:
5:00- alarm goes off- time to wake up
5:05- into my office with a hot cup of coffee and a Lara bar
5:15- Jesus Calling & Daily Planner
From there until the kids wake up, I get to work:
-email: I only allow myself 15-20 minutes in the morning for email. If I didn’t cap it, I’d spend all day on it. My priority is work email and then I go from there.
-blog post: This is my main goal in the morning. I try to have an idea of what to write planned out in my calendar. Sometimes posts will be started in my phone and others, I’m creating the entire post in the morning. If the kids wake up early, you may not see a post for the day. Blogging is a small part of business for me, but it is not something I have to do each day. I love that it is flexible and always shoot for three posts a week.
-social media scheduling: Most days I don’t get much time during the day to get on social media. Scheduling posts helps me stay somewhat active on my accounts but not taking away from my workday.
-TV Time: Let me just say that I LOVE how you can watch primetime shows with an app now. I usually have a show from the night before playing in the background while I work.
-Design Files: If I have time, I’ll design my first 2-3 shirts for the day and get them set up. It saves me a lot of time when the kids are up and the machine gets turned on.
-Get Dressed: When I hear the kids rumbling, I go get ready. I don’t shower in the morning because I workout either first thing or sometime before noon. I still get dressed and out of what I slept in. I’m telling you, that alone makes such a difference. I brush my teeth and put a little makeup on. The kids usually stir for 10 minutes, which is all the time I need.
Some days the kids will be up before 6. Some days they’ll sleep all the way until 7. It’s unpredictable but even if I have just 20 minutes alone, it makes a difference.
How do you start your day?
When do you make time for YOU?