11 strategies for a morning routine (when you can NOT wake up before the kids)

I think the most common issue moms share is sleep deprivation. Personally, before having children, I assumed severe lack of sleep was limited to the early infant months. Little did I know just how long the broken sleep goes for while raising kids.

Between middle-of-the-night spooks, bed wetting, bathroom trips and sick days—most mamas are not clocking in anywhere close to the 8-10 recommended sleep hours.

So I began to feel that familiar struggle between what I call “my ideal and my real.” My ideal was to both be well rested and have an intentional morning routine—and if possible, one that begins on my own terms, preferably before the kids wake up.

My real was chronic nights of sub-par and broken sleep and a complete abandonment of attempting any morning routine at all.

This is where I needed a strong dose of my own medicine. I believe that as mothers, we need to kick ideal out the window and come to terms with the life we are living in order to create strategies that actual move us forward… instead of waiting for the perfect conditions to exist.

The old familiar all-or-nothing trap is one I fell into for a long time. Since I was already sleep-deprived, I put off creating a morning routine that would set a cadence for my day in a way that I wanted.

And as it often happens—while I was teaching one of my courses, a light bulb went off in my own life.  While it may not be the most perfect scenario, I could still create a robust and effective morning routine with my kids awake and around me. 

I began to explore different ways that I could bring in intentional calm, clarity, and joy to my mornings as a means to help my day follow suit. Here are 11 ideas you can begin to play around with during your morning hours that can be done with or without kids underfoot.

1. Breathing

Simple deep breathing practices can literally take one minute, and will shift your whole biochemistry into a calm, alert state.

2. Prayer

No doubt about it, if I don’t have enough quiet, solitary time in prayer I start to crave it—but there are many types of conversations I have with God through the day, even when noise and action surorund me. Staying in the presence of God during our busy times is just as important as during our quiet times.

3. Music

There’s hardly anything that can lift your spirits and set you back on the right path as effectively as music that moves you from the inside out. Make a playlist of your favorites and include some music time in your morning hours.

4. Techniques to get you in a healthy energy flow

We are energy beings at the core (not to get too quantum physics on you), and when your energy is high and vibrant, your whole day follows suit. Energy techniques work under philosophies similar to acupuncture and reflexology, which keep a healthy flow of energy running through your body. Here’s a quick stress-reducing technique video I created.

5. Nourishing breakfast

When you wake up, a healthy hormone system will cause a rise in cortisol (the stress hormone) to get you moving and grooving. Once you’re going, it’s important to help your body shift out of a stress metabolism and into a calm metabolism—and a robust, nourishing breakfast is a critical way to do that.

6. Read inspirational quotes or Scripture

Set your mental focus at the start of the day by filling your mind with inspiring words, scripture or meaningful quotes.

7.  Essential oils

Work to engage all your senses for a calm, clear, and energized start. Choose essential oils from the citrus or mint families, and either diffuse them through the air or rub them in the palm of your hands. Take in a few calming deep breaths.

8. A luxurious face-washing routine

Small acts of pampering can go a long way—create a simple morning routine where you clean and moisturize your face with a bit extra care. My favorite is a natural baking soda and coconut oil scrub I make, which leaves me refreshed for very little cost and time.

9. Simple stretches, or stress-reducing yoga positions

If you don’t have time for major exercise or activity, you can still greatly benefit from moving your body and stretching stiff or sore areas. Here is a great short video by a friend and colleague of mine, Dr Sara Gottfried, for a quick stress-reducing yoga posture. I regularly get my kids to join me on this one when we could all use a cool down.

10. Prayer of thanksgiving with the family before breakfast

Taking a moment to connect as a family and to set the day’s tone together is powerful. One of my favorite things to do before a meal blessing is to hold hands and take a family breath together. You’d be amazed at the energy difference this one act makes.

11.  Rambling pages or journaling

One of my favorite morning activities is rambling pages. This is such a fantastic way to get all your chaotic swirling thoughts out of your head, onto paper, and to open up space for processing and clearer thinking.

Clearly, this list is not exhaustive, nor does anyone need to do eleven things to have an effective morning routine. But these are ideas to get you started. Best of all, they’re easy to implement, even when the house is bustling and you have very little time.

Perhaps you could choose one or two that resonated with you—plan to work them in tomorrow morning just to experiment with how it feels.

And if you’re inclined, I invite you to learn more about my signature course, Designed for Wellness, which is starting in a couple weeks for a summer group run.  It’s proof positive that small shifts can make a huge difference in a busy mom’s life and well being.

This post was first published on June 13, 2012.

Lisa Byrne

Lisa is the bestselling author of Replenish and founder of WellGrounded Life. She's got a big-hearted vision of a world where moms are fully equipped to live calm, healthy, and vibrant lives. She lives in New Jersey with her husband, three kids, and 110 pound yellow lab.

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  1. This was so me. All-or-nothing when it came to my morning routine. My kids are young (4,2, and 1 on Friday), and while they are overall good sleepers, we still have lots of getting up for various things.
    One thing I’ll add that helps me is to drink a large glass of water. Even before my coffee. The water seems to give my hydration and helps me get it going in the morning!
    Thanks for some great ideas!

  2. These are great tips. I am not one of those unfortunate souls whose kids wake up super early. (I hear tell of kids who arise at 5 am. Shudder!) So I’m able to get up a good hour or so before mine. Even still, there have been times in my life when I wasn’t able to, usually due to first trimester fatigue or some other issue. I’ll keep these in mind if and when that comes up again.

    • That me…one of those unfortunate souls, though mine only wake at 5 in phases. Not sure what sets it off, but they’ll wake everyday at 5-5:30 for months and then go through a period where they sleep till more like 6:30 or so. Everytime I convince myself that I am going to just set the alarm and wake at 6 everyday, they seem to move into the 5:00 phase shortly after and I just end up disillusioned. No matter what time we wake up, though, I do insist that I get to eat my breakfast all the way through and without any little ones on my lap. If I don’t at least have this, I am done for the day.

      As a family, we often do little projects or science experiments in the morning since we have SO MUCH time before the day really begins. I have a collection of our early morning experiments on my blog under the link “Seven O’Clock Science” (

  3. Oh, I’ve been there! In that stage when I absolutely could NOT get out of bed before the kids, I relied heavily on a second quiet time. When the baby went down for a nap and the big kids had rest time, I’d make myself some coffee, do some devotional reading and review my to-do list.

    This second quiet time plan worked so well for me. If the morning had gone smoothly, this was bonus time. If the morning had been distastrous, I knew I had a do-over coming in a few hours!

    • Oh I love it! “Second quiet time” = a built in do-over!!

    • WOW! I love the idea of the do-over 🙂 I tried it this morning and let’s just say it helped me breathe much easier while getting my girls (3 &4) ready! I knew that regardless of what was in the present, I would have a future mommy time out. Thanks 🙂

    • I have loved a later quiet time sometimes too. With my first two under two and getting up during the summer months at 5ish after a night broken sleep, I too adopted the nap time as my quiet time. It really did help for that season, and then of course things changed and so did our routine. Now both kids sleep through the night most nights and we live in an odd time zone so they don’t usually get up until at least 8 or later, but that all will change soon again.

      I am expecting number three in the fall and know that this new little one will have a rhythm all its own. I think I am more at peace with that this time around knowing that He gives grace to find ways to make it through any season of life and that they really do change so quickly.

      I think that is some of the best advice for new mothers, it doesn’t have to be perfect to be a wonderful time in your life, and this too shall pass, little ones change so fast the next season of life is right around the corner.

  4. Gosh, the ONLY thing that works for me is to get up… before the kids. As much as I HAAAAAATE to. I would so much rather stay up til 2am, but then my whole household falls apart the next day and I’m SO grumpy from lack of sleep.

    Think I”ll go back and study your list again…

  5. I try to get up before my daughter but it definitely doesn’t always happen. Thanks for the reminder that I can change my mindset and have a good morning regardless. And thanks for the tips.

  6. My kids do get up really early (and fortunately, so does their dad), and my favorite way to get going without stress is to just spend a few extra minutes in bed, thinking or praying. Nothing big, but it makes a difference.

  7. Mornings are chaotic here. I always feel like I am playing catch up. Thanks for a reminder to step back and live the life I have, instead of getting caught up in what it should be.

    I love the music suggestion! It’s getting implemented tomorrow morning.

  8. Shana H says:

    This is great- just what I needed! Thank you! Could you post your recipe for the facial cleanser?

  9. What terrific ideas. I love the idea of being able to do a quick yoga routine first thing in the morning.

  10. This is definitely where I’m at right now. My kids wake up anywhere from 5-6 am (1 year old and almost 3 year old) and I just can’t get up earlier than that right now. Most nights I’m not getting very good quality sleep and I feel like a zombie most of the day. I’m so frustrated by not being able to get some time to myself in the mornings before the kids are up and clawing at me (literally!). I’ve basically given up on having any type of morning routine because I feel like no matter what I try, it just never works. This is what I needed to read to inspire me to make it happen no matter what! Thanks for the uplifting post!

  11. Great tips! Good to know I’m not alone. I appreciate the “get up before the kids” idea, and I’ll do that later… But now my 3 yo wakes between 6-630am which can be rough after waking up 3+ times at night with my 8 mo (can we say sleep regression?)

    This article is timely since DH, who usually feeds DS3 breakfast while I “sleep in”, is going away for work for 2.5 weeks.

  12. I love the “real” vs. “ideal” concept. I sometimes spend so much time lamenting the fact that the ideal is not happening but I really need to just accept reality sometimes & go with it! Thanks for the great tips!

  13. Perfect timing – I am just working on starting my morning routine and wondering how to make it work with a 2.5 year old and a 12-week old. This has some great ideas. PS – What proportions do you use for the coconut oil & baking soda face scrub?

  14. I am really working on getting to bed on time and getting up before the kids, but when this doesn’t happen (often), I have found that getting dressed right away really helps me.

    I also try to read some scripture, but I don’t usually get much in when the kids are up. Any little bit helps, though. We love music around here, too. I’m going to try some of your other ideas. I might try the stretches/yoga right now. Thanks!

    • Your comment made me think that many of my “kid-friendly” morning routine ideas are actually really helpful for my kid’s themselves- they love the music in the mornings, the stretching, the breakfast ritual…We all need a good start to our day!

  15. Christina Y. says:

    This is a great post, especially for the summer months when we all like to sleep in a bit later! I also like to start my day with a huge glass of water… it really energizes me!!

  16. Thank you for the reality check.
    It seems that whenever I brouse online for ideas to tweak or refresh my morning routine, the inevitable answer to all of my morning routine woes is: get up a half hour earlier and improve yourself in this way or that way…
    No can do. I have one precious hour available to me before the kids start trickling down and if it has to be more than that, everyone ends up suffering in the long run. So, as in all things, there are trade offs. If devotional time and exercise take up the whole hour, well, then, I’ll have to be stinky, pony-tail mom until naptime. If I need to be presentable, exercise gets cut or moved to later in the day.
    I would LOVE to git ‘er all done before the kids get up (and appreciate those who can pull it off), but for this household, in this time and place, that is pure fantasy.

  17. It was nice to read a useful list that didn’t include “helpful” hints like setting your clothes out the night before. When I first went back to work after my son was born, my mom actually suggested I forego my makeup routine if I was pressed for time (uh, no). I do find that stretching helps get me moving, I’ll definitely try some of the other suggestions!

  18. I like the concepts of the ideal and the real — very freeing.

  19. Love your reasons for #5. I struggle with wanting breakfast…don’t really like breakfast food. HOWEVER, I’ll do ANYTHING to reduce my stress level. (Well, anything healthy, that is). Thanks for pointing out the WHY behind how breakfast lowers stress.

    My littles and I (ages 2, 4 & 5) do a sitting yoga position as well…along with deep breathing…then we add a simple ‘Jesus Prayer’ (Jesus Christ, have mercy on me, a sinner.) and we’re all in a much better frame of mind to face the day!

  20. Great post!
    I don’t have kids running around yet (first one due Sept 8th!!) but I’ve found setting the table for breakfast before I go to bed is amazing for helping with the morning. It’s such a small thing but it makes a huge difference. When I wake up, it feels as though someone else has set it for me. So nice! lol
    (also laying out clothes the night before)

  21. “I believe that as mothers, we need to kick ideal out the window and come to terms with the life we are living in order to create strategies that actual move us forward… instead of waiting for the perfect conditions to exist.”
    This quote is so perfect and exactly what I need to remember! I am usually able to wake up before my toddler and enjoy a few minutes of quiet time with just my coffee and the latest episode of Real Housewives.

  22. My kids get up pretty early – 6 to 6:30. Usually, I’m up before them, drinking coffee with my dh and then going for my run.

    On the days when I run late and don’t get that early morning time in, I make sure I drink my coffee and water. I always try to get a shower in to help me feel better. I also make sure I eat a good breakfast. I also monitor myself and remind myself about priorities. It’s easy to get frazzled if I don’t stay focused on what HAS to be done before the kids go to school.

  23. I was never able to get up before my kids until they were pre-teens, and now I’m the one waking them up! Before then, I had to let the shower go until later in the day. My “routine” was to brush my teeth — usually with a small audience — and shuffle to the coffee pot. Both kids were, thankfully, good at waiting for breakfast until I’d had those first few life-giving sips.

  24. Yes, please share your recipe for cleaning your face. Thank you for an awsome post.

  25. These are such super ideas. My kids are older now, but how I wish I’d had these helpful tips back when they were beating me out of bed at 6:00 a.m., which they did every day! I love the fact that you encourage moms to just read a little devotional reading in the morning – maybe while they’re making breakfast or while their kids are eating. One way I’ve encouraged young moms to make this work is to pull a few Bible verses or inspirational quotes that particularly speak to them right now and write them on 4×6 index cards and put them in a small photo album. You can keep that album in the kitchen and pick it up to read through it, really meditating on those few scriptures or quotes, while you’re boiling an egg, waiting for the toast to pop up or waiting on the coffee to brew.

    • Beautiful idea Kay! And I also like to scotch tape inspiration to my kitchen window (above the sink) so it is there for me to read through the day!

  26. Thanks for these tips. We all have days that just don’t start well, and I often notice it’s the days we don’t sleep well. If only there was a “do over” button to redo our night’s rest!

  27. Can we get the recipe for the baking soda coconut oil facial scrub? It sounds wonderful!

  28. I love the joint yoga idea. With a 3 and a 1 year old, mornings are nothing if not loud and we could all use something to slow us down. Thanks.

  29. Kristin says:

    Love this! I dream of the day I’ll feel rested enough to get up before the kids, but these ideas are wonderful for now. Thanks! What is your coconut oil/baking soda scrub? Would love to know the ratios! 🙂

  30. THANK YOU! I felt guilty for so long reading all these posts from people about getting up before your kids and how it kinda solves all of life’s problems. My attempts to do so really messed up our family routine – the little ones got up even earlier (which I didn’t think was possible!) and everything just went nuts. Like you I finally made peace with reality, quit reading the guilt-inducing posts, and have been working on my own “kids-underfoot-morning-routine”. It has been so good for us all. There really can be joy in embracing your own way of doing things.

  31. Thank you for this. I have been having the hardest times in the morning, for a very long time (possibly ever since I had kids). Usually I am still in bed when the kids get up and I convince them to come cuddle with me for even longer before I make it out of bed. I really want to try to get up even just a little bit before them.

  32. The face washing scenario sounds so simple but it really does help me. And I’m wanting to try more with the essential oils … I keep hearing a lot about this and the mood boosting effects.

    • Catherine Marie says:

      Lemongrass essential oil. Amazing, I find! I was putting it in my homemade laundry soap but now I think I’ll not feel guilty and strange rubbing a bit on my palms, as the author suggests. We need good smells to balance out the yucky ones, hey? = ) And good music to balance out the whining. = P

  33. William says:


    I love your blog, and even though the majority of the content is more parent-focused than specifically mom-focused, I have to admit I find myself grumbling in the familiar “active dad’s don’t get any credit” vein at times when I’m reading it. Obviously, it is a blog called simple mom, and it makes no rational sense for me to think “she’s just not talking to dads at all!” because, um, it’s called simple mom, so, duh, William. I’m probably just grumpy because I’m sleep deprived. Anyhoo, and forgive me if I’ve somehow missed this in another post or area of your site, but can you recommend a similarly curated and written blog for dads? Maybe a father’s day post listing some good choices? I would really appreciate it. Us really involved, really caring, really devoted and sometimes far too fallible dad’s could use this kind of talk but with more puppy dog tails. Thanks so much for your hard and high quality work, and please don’t allow any of my just-struggled-the-kids-through-bedtime angst to imply even one iota of derision towards your terrific site. Also I’d have sent this via your contact form but it didn’t how up correctly. Thanks so much!

  34. One of my favorite parts of our morning routine is the way my son gets a bit of time alone with each of us (and, alternately, each parent gets a little time alone). I know my son especially likes eating breakfast with dad while I’m showering & dressing–it’s their thing to do together before dad heads off to work.

  35. Oh I love this post! I also have struggled with the reality of waking up bf the kids. It’s taken a while for me to not beat myself up about it, and sometimes it still happens.

    For sure what makes the rest of the day flow is a time of prayer and Bible reading with the kids. I’ve been reading a chapter from The Message each morning either during or right after breakfast. If it doesn’t happen my 4 yr. old usually reminds me. My kids pretty much wiggle and squirm during the time I pray, but I love that I get to show them something that I wish I saw my mom do more in front of me. Parents are really the best roll models.

  36. Frazzled mom of three toddlers. Had a breakdown last week. Sooooo good to read all the posts and feel like I’m not alone. I often go through my day feeling lost but giving it all I got and then still feeling like a big ol loser at the end of the day like “I’ve got to do this all over tomorrow?”. Well thankfully I have a God who has me like mush in his hands because I’d be on total shutdown without him and good friends who support me and sent a link to this site. Very encouraging. Thank you.

  37. My DD wakes up around 5.30! Now that she’s out of her crib, she comes to my bedroom herself and I nurse her 15 min or so. Today I decided to try doing my exercise (spinning bike) first thing even if she’s with me and it worked. I put a cartoon on dvd, gave her a snack and we both watched together. She didn’t bug me at all (she’s usually not much into TV time) and I exercised for 30 min. It felt great!

  38. Arie Farnam says:

    I’m sorry but these simply are not tips for a morning with children already awake, not my children or any others I know well, at least. Perhaps, if you have kids with calm and obedient temperaments, who are not constantly bent on destruction or in some real need of care, you can do one or two of these with them present. I doubt most parents without household help and significant outside resources can.

    Last winter, I implemented a complete morning routine and it works wonders. It simply requires that I get up before the kids and have only 6 hours of sleep, which isn’t sustainable for me but that’s how it goes. I then implement about half of the things suggested here in the morning before my kids get up, and I function well, do the things one is supposed to do with children and so forth. I probably have less patience than would be ideal, due to sleep-deprivation, but the difference between before and after I implemented the routine is great, none-the-less. Oh, and one condition for the success of the routine was getting hubby on board with an evening routine that includes dishes and decluttering every night. Without that it would not have had such a great effect.

  39. Shelley R. says:

    Well, even this morning I felt like a rain soaked log attempting to sit up. It is rare that I am awake before one, if not all three of our precious kiddos. And honestly, I’ve thrown a morning routine out the window for I’m up “after them” and enter into go-go mode before I can breathe. I’ve never thought about including them, or simply setting a routine that they could be invited into as well. There’s hope! Thank you for the encouragement today!

  40. Thanks for sharing this one. I got a lot of insights that I could be able to use every morning to wake up. All I could say these are perfect routines to start a beautiful day.

  41. I co-sleep with my 22 month old. Getting up before him merely means he gets up earlier too. Our routine upon waking is to immediately change his diaper/clothes (his pajama top gets left on because it he frequently ends up with breakfast all over it. We change it for the day after breakfast.) Then I go get dressed/bathroom routine – this is very quick. While I’m dressing he’s normally talking to the dog or following me around. Afterwards, we both go into the kitchen and breakfast is prepared (generally oatmeal in the microwave, muffins or pancakes out of the freezer with fresh fruit.) We sit down at the table together to eat. I do tend to bring my laptop with me to check email/blogs. He’s always finished faster than me. I take a break and get him down/hands wiped. He plays around the connected living room while I finish eating/computering. Sometimes he crawls up in a dining room chair near the window and watches the cars/buses go by. He asks to nurse at this point if I’m taking too long. When I’m finished we carry the breakfast dishes back to the kitchen/clean up any mess/check our meal plan to see if anything needs to be pulled out of the freezer or placed in the crockpot. Then depending on the day and the weather we move on with our morning – Fridays we grocery shop, other days we might do some housework/cleaning. I try very hard to get us outside for at least an hour in the mornings before peak sun hours start. If it’s a cold or rainy day, we usually spend time playing around the house.

    The biggest help to me was letting go of expectations – my own for myself are the highest of all. I’ve found I feel more ready for the day when I get dressed right after waking. I keep our commitments very low. I use my son’s nap time (generally 1-2 hours depending on the growth stage at the time) as my personal time. My son likes to help with household chores – pushing the laundry basket down the hall, unloading the silverware from the dishwasher. Involving him in what I’m doing means he’s not off somewhere getting into something he shouldn’t.

  42. Jennifer says:

    I completely understand the sleep deprivation and that it doesn’t end with the early infant months—ugh! It’s so true, you just never know when you’ll be awaken in the middle of the night even with “good sleepers”!

    I am definitely going to look into the essential oil tips as well as the homemade facial scrub. ***thanks for the idea!

  43. Do you mind if I quote a couple of your posts as long as I provide credit and sources back to your website? My blog is in the exact same area of interest as yours and my users would certainly benefit from a lot of the information you provide here. Please let me know if this okay with you. Thank you!

  44. Elizabeth says:

    Thanks for sharing the yoga link, I have been praying to find something simple to do at home!

  45. Queen of Chaos says:

    Just wanted to say I’m so glad someone posted this. My daughter and I happen to both have the same “prime” wake-up hour, and instead of battling with myself to change and beat her waking, I learned to embrace it awhile back. I still feel the occasional guilt that I can’t force myself to get up before her, but really that’s only on the days that we can’t seem to fall into routine, so I feel disoriented all day. Frankly, I’m sure early risers have days like that too though! Different life seasons have required slight variations in our routine, but I always get my morning shower (so important to me, I’d take it over any of the ideas listed here!) and we sit down for breakfast at the table together. I think the key is determining your personal essentials and going from there. For me, it’s my prime sleep hours, shower, and breakfast. It works for us, and I shouldn’t have to feel guilty that I stay up late for my personal time instead of rising early.

  46. I’m a nurse and I work the evening shift, 3 – 11:30 p.m. I make it into bed by 12:30 a.m.; there’s no way I’m getting up before my kids in the morning! I’m very fortunate that most days they sleep until 7, but during the summer when the sun is up early, they get up earlier. I’m so thankful for my husband, who helps me get everyone going in the morning before he’s off to work. The very best days are when I get to squeeze my shower in before he leaves, but at the very least, he helps me get the kids breakfast and get dressed.

    Thanks for more ideas for how to make the morning go even more smoothly.

  47. Oh my goodness. Thank you. I have been a mom now for over 18 years and have been having babies all this time. I get very weary of reading that a morning routine must start before the kids awake because this does not mesh with our style of parenting at all. All 7 of our kids have joined us in bed in the early morning (usually around 5am) where they have had a nice nurse and spent the next hour or so cuddling between mom and dad. If I was to get up at any time during this cuddling time, the baby/toddler would simply wake up and join me.

    This is an excellent post that will be very helpful to many moms. 🙂 Well done!!

  48. Great tips! I already incorporate music into the morning routine. The number one reason is that it gets my kids moving around with positive energy. And it prevents me from repeatedly asking them to brush teeth and put on shoes because they are glued to morning cartoons.

  49. This morning when I rustled, I brushed my hand against something that wasn’t there when I went to sleep. It was a little kid-drawn happy face on a popsicle stick, stuck in a toy milk carton. Nothing says “Have a nice day” like waking up to that, right? My five year old is always getting up before me and showing up in my room with a Transformers mask or pirate costume. Once he even put a bucket over my head so I wouldn’t hear the noise from construction on the property next to us. Ha! While I would prefer to wake before him, I just can’t match his early-bird/morning-person ways. But I find if I can get a simple glass of water and sit and read my Bible in bed for even ten minutes, I feel a lot better about what’s ahead for the day. It’s simple, but it helps!

  50. i cannot seem to get up before my kids, but i have found that if i have my coffee or tea and read a little bit of the Bible, even with them swarming around me, i get a much better start to the day. sometimes i read it aloud to them and other times just quietly to myself. i remind them to let mommy have this little bit of Bible reading time because it will make for a much happier nicer mommy for the rest of the day. it is true that we need to let go of ideals and really live in the life God has given us right now. i find myself often longing for ideals but then i realize that they really aren’t real and keep me trapped in ungratefulness for what i have in my life. i appreciate all your suggestions on this list.

  51. abandonment of attempting any morning routine at all.

  52. I really like your tips. Mornings are always hectic for everyone. I believe I like the essential oils and reading some inspirational quotes the best.

  53. So glad to have stumbled upon this!! Trying so hard to get a routine, up and ready to meet the day before the kids (1 and 3). But the baby is not sleeping through the night and they both are up at 6am, every day. So discouraged that I can’t get it to work. This article met me right where I am and made me realize it doesn’t have to be all or nothing. Thank you!!

  54. This is great- just what I needed! Thank you!

  55. I really like your tips. Mornings are always hectic for everyone.

  56. Great tips! I already incorporate music into the morning routine.

  57. I found that getting to bed on time really helps my morning routine. That’s probably a topic for another post, but a bedtime routine set me up for a successful morning routine. Also, eliminating caffeine completely made it easier for me to wakeup in the morning without crashing later.

    I like the idea of music in the morning. That would get the day started in a fun and happy way.

  58. All these ideas are wonderful. Although I usually get up before my kids, I’ve realized that my kids need a new morning routine – one that energizes all of us. There are so many ideas on this list that we could do together.

    I especially like the devotions – I usually have time to get mine done before the kids get up, but I really like the idea of doing them with the kids or at least in front of the kids…it’s great thing to model to our kids.

    Right now my kids are still asleep, but I’m eager for them to wake up so we can try some of these.

  59. Wow, I’m not sure I do ANY of these things in the morning, except of course eat a good breakfast. Like others have mentioned, though, naptime is my real lull, my own quiet space. My youngest is about to give up her nap, and she may be ready, but I’m not sure I am.

  60. Weakness, thy name is getting out of bed. I cannot do it. And I know it’s the key to so much. It’s like my clutch. The warm bed, the quiet before the chaos ensues.
    Good post. I’ve gotta get my head into this.

  61. Grace from London says:

    The antidote to “all or nothing” is this advice that I was given about 20 years ago: “If something is worth doing, it’s worth doing badly”. How true! I might not have the prefect morning routine, but if it’s worth doing, then I will carry on imperfectly. And if that includes not getting out of bed in time to be ahead of my kids but rather have my 7 year old bring me a cup of tea in bed, that will do too!

  62. Wow. Seriously ladies, the trick is to get to bed as early as you can at night and get up before the kids to start the day, no matter what the routine is. I call it “morning team” and I wake my kids up myself between 5 and 6 AM.

    Oh btw my wife stays in bed while I take charge of the morning. She misses all the fun and gets up grumpy. So sad.

    Good luck !

  63. jack spretzen says:

    I just get out of bed … the rest takes care of itself.

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