Greater peace in your home can be achieved when you create simple morning and evening routines and follow them every day.
Are you looking for a tool that you can use to make each day even better? There is a simple solution that, when used consistently, can transform your day. This solution will help you to be more productive and feel accomplished each day as well.
So, what is this tool that you can use? Simple morning and evening routines, also known as AM and PM routines. Your morning routine gets your day off to a great start and your evening routine closes your current day and sets up your next day.
Does this sound too easy? Something does not have to be complicated to be effective. Morning and evening routines are key sections of your day that you can use to your benefit.
What is a routine and why should I use one?
What a routine is
A routine is a tool to help you live your best day ever day. It is a way to keep you on task and focused. A routine can help you automatically get things done so you are not thinking about these things all day long. A routine is freeing.
What a routine is NOT
A routine is not a straightjacket. A routine is not a dictator over your life. You are not a failure if you don’t follow your routine to the letter every single day. A routine is not stifling.
Why you should use routines
As a mom, do you often feel pulled in many different directions at the same time? Do you feel unfocused sometimes during the day, reacting to what is going on rather than being intentional in how you spend each day? Do you reach the end of the day tired, yet wondering what exactly you accomplished?
Routines can help you with all of that.
If you often feel pulled in many different directions at the same time, routines can help you to loot at one task at a time. If you feel unfocused or reactive rather than being intentional in how you spend each day, routines can give you a focus in your day and a purpose in what to get done. (This includes time for rest and play, too.) If you reach the end of the day tired, yet wondering what exactly you accomplished, routines can solve this because you can look at your routine list and know exactly what you did that day.
Does a routine sound like a good idea, or are you still skeptical? Read on for more.
How do I create a routine?
Creating a routine is actually simple to do. There are two different ways you can choose to start. Pick the one that makes the most sense to you.
Option 1-Pick one thing.
Think of the ONE THING that will get your day off to a great start. Write it down as your AM routine.
Some ideas: Perhaps starting a load of laundry in the morning will get your day off to a great start. It could be eating breakfast, getting dressed before you leave your bedroom, or spending time in prayer first thing in the morning that has you feeling accomplished each morning rather than feeling like you are playing catch-up the rest of the day.
Think of ONE THING that will get your next morning off to a great start if you get it done in the evening before you go to bed. Write it down as your PM routine.
For a PM routine, perhaps laying out your clothes for the next day gets your morning off to a great start (and prevents you from tearing through your closet or drawers each morning in a rush). Maybe it is spending time with your spouse at the end of the day to reconnect is how you want to end your day on a good note.
Reevaluate after a week.
Pick one thing you want to do every AM and one thing to do every PM and implement them every day for a week.
After a week, reevaluate. Are these the best tasks for you, or should you choose something different? Perhaps you have these two items running smoothly after a week and are ready to add one more item to each of your routines. Make any necessary changes. (Start by making small changes. Don't go overboard!) Implement these changes every day for a week and reevaluate again after a week. Keep repeating this reevaluation process until you have your routines working well for you.
Option 2-Start with a list.
Create a SHORT list of tasks that you want to accomplish in the AM and in the PM. By short, think 3-5 items for each routine.
It is important to remember that your routine is not a to-do list. It is a short list of items to accomplish every day to help you to stay focused and intentional each day.
For your AM routine, write down tasks that, once accomplished, will get your day off to a great start.
If you are not sure of what items you should have on your list, think of what you may say to yourself each day. Do you say at 3;00, "I forgot to get that chicken out of the freezer for dinner!" or say "I should have started the laundry earlier"? If these are what you find yourself saying, then there are things you can put in your AM routine: Check the day's dinner menu and get any items out of the freezer to be defrosted. Start a load of laundry. You could add checking your meal plan for the next day and getting items out to defrost to your PM routine.
A sample AM plan: Pray a Morning Offering, get dressed, make the bed, start a load of laundry.
Create a SHORT list for PM tasks, just 3-5 items. The items in your PM routine are things to do that will close out today and set you up for success tomorrow.
What do you need to do tonight to get your day off to a great start tomorrow? This may include making sure all dinner dishes are washed and put away, the kitchen counters are wiped down, and making sure laundry is put away. It may include checking your calendar to see if you have appointments the next day. To help you to get ready faster in the morning, laying out your clothes for the next day can be a great morning timesaver.
A sample PM plan: Make sure the kitchen is cleaned up, make sure all laundry is put away, lay out clothes for tomorrow, pray. (Psalm 28, Psalm 23, Prayer to my Guardian Angel, and Suspice are some evening prayer ideas.)
Keep it short and sweet.
These lists are also not for tasks that will take a long time. They are not for tasks that will take 20-30 minutes or more. If you have a task that you want to do as part of your routines that will take a long time, you can add it to one of your routines for a limited time, like wash dishes for 15 minutes.
How do I implement a routine?
Begin. Don't spend so long in planning to start a routine that you don't actually do it. You can simply begin with one AM task and one PM task. Reevaluate after a week and then make any necessary changes.
Don't let the attempt at perfection prevent you from taking action.
What do I do if my routines don't work?
If your routines are not working for you, find out why. Did you not pick the best tasks for them? Are you trying to do too much? Are you trying to do too little? Do you need to do the items in your routines every day, rather than a few times a week?
Remember that your routines are to serve you; you are not serving your routines. Make changes to create routines that will work for you so that you can accomplish what you need to get done and feel peace when these things are done.
It is okay to make changes. In fact, you will probably need to make changes in your routines as your family grows, especially when your kids are able to help with things like laundry and dishes.
Create simple morning and evening routines to transform each day.
The purpose of a routine is to set you up for success each day. When you create simple morning and evening routines and do them every day, you can transform each day to one of greater focus, peace, and joy.