Create Your Own Mom Morning Routine Checklist
Most of us know our mornings would go smoother with a daily morning routine. Maybe you even have a morning routine for your kids- but you get pulled in every direction and the morning flies by and you wonder where it went and why you’re so exhausted (and where you put the coffee you reheated three times already).
Creating a mommy morning routine can feel impossible, though- at least in my house with littles around, mornings seem to start as calm as a tornado at a dance party. Everyone wants breakfast, needs a diaper change, is trying to start school, arguing with their siblings, wanting snuggles, wants the OTHER cup for their milk, can’t find a shirt they like….all within the first few minutes mom walks out of the bedroom.
Eventually it all gets done and everyone is fed, happy, and starting homeschool…but what can easily get lost in all of this is the Mommy– and the things I need to do for myself and the house to start the day well.
Maybe if your kids are a bit older (or sleep past 6…unlike mine…) your mornings aren’t as crazy, but we can still all benefit from a good mom morning routine, right?
Psst if you want to skip to getting your own checklist template, put your email in here for the Mommy Morning Routine Checklist!
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Set Up for Your Mommy Morning Routine the Night Before
As I’ve talked with other moms about this concept of having a mommy morning routine, the consensus is that the “morning” routine has to start the night before.
If you don’t go to bed until 3am, I don’t care how good your plan is….you’re not going to want to get up and be productive! And on a similar note, if you get up but have no plan…you’ll be fighting an uphill battle to get it all done as you try and figure out your priorities while the day starts spinning around you.
Set yourself up for a productive morning routine with sleep
I am preaching to myself here because this is such a struggle for me- I get the kids to bed and I just want to do all the things I couldn’t do earlier in the day when they were awake- I want time that is my own for a little bit! But then I end up staying up too late…then waking up too tired…then having a long day because I’m tired…then starting the cycle all over again.
Here’s a few tips to make over your morning with good night’s sleep:
-Practice good sleep hygiene
-Clean your stress area the night before.
-Spend a few minutes doing some relaxing bedtime yoga or stretches to down-regulate your systems into a better sleeping mode.
Create your Mommy Morning Routine Checklist
Being rested is the first step, but you also need a plan for your mom morning routine. I like to plan out my next day the night before- because while I have many things I basically always do (my morning routine checklist) there seem to always be a few things I need to add in or take out based on the day, so it helps to have the “game plan” in my head before morning comes.
As you plan out your morning/day, you’re essentially budgeting your time and telling your time where to go so you don’t have to get to the end and wonder where it went. And by doing it the night before, you’re freeing up your brain from laying there awake trying to think through what you need to remember for the next day.
This isn’t to say you have to have a strict schedule and not deviate from me- I mean, that’s not even realistic with kids! That’s why this article is about a “routine” and not a schedule. What it does mean is you’ll have simple achievable goals for yourself that you can reasonably get done in the time you have- and you’ll figure out the ones you want to do the same each day and what needs to be different for different days.
Below I’ll detail some pieces of a morning routine that I find helpful in creating my own routine- knowing that yours will look different from mine. In fact, because yours will look different than mine, I’ve created a printable morning routine checklist template for you to make your own- just enter your email below!
Begin your Morning Routine with the Right Mindset
One of the first things on your mommy morning routine checklist should be creating the right mindset for your day. As someone who has a nightmare disorder, I know how hard it can be to have a positive attitude some mornings!
To start my mornings off with a positive mindset, here are some of the things I do (and how I achieve them):
-put limits on my social media. My phone comes with a feature that allows me to limit/turn off apps before a certain time of day. So for the first 20 minutes or so of my day, I keep those apps limited. 20 minutes may not seem like a long time, but it’s enough time for my first activity not to be browsing Facebook.
-start my day by reading Scripture or a devotional. This adjusts my focus and helps me prepare my heart for the day.
-the next part of my day is getting my shower, so I add in prayer/meditation time by praying in the shower. I’m easily distracted, so I actually assigned different shower tiles to be different things I want to remember to pray through each day.
Make time for Mommy in Your Morning Routine Checklist
Once you’ve gotten your mind in the right place, it’s time to do care for your body. Included in your mommy morning routine checklist should be basic hygiene for yourself. If you’ve got a really little baby or lots of kids, I realize this might get boiled down to the very, very basics- but include it if at all possible!
For me, this includes my shower, brushing my teeth, taking my anxiety medications, taking my supplements, brushing my hair, and putting in some earrings.
I also am a big fan of dressing like you mean it. I don’t mean you shouldn’t wear yoga pants and a mom bun– the opposite, in fact. My personal opinion is that you should dress intentionally for the day ahead- and if the best outfit for the day is yoga pants, so be it!
If your goal is to get outside and go for a walk with your kids later that day- dress for that! How many times have you ended up not going somewhere or doing something fun because you’d have to change your clothes? Or maybe that’s just me. Anyway- think about your day and dress for it!
Include the kids in Your Morning Routine Checklist
Some parts of your mom morning routine you’ll have some control over- and some you won’t. We all know the kids are going to be a wild card- some days they’ll wake up sweet and charming and other days you’d really rather send them back to bed.
So what are some things we CAN control to help set the tone for the day with our kids and give us the best chance of a good day together?
First, I am a huge fan of music in the mornings to start the day. In our house it’s Seeds of Worship! Fun and uplifting music has a way of getting into our hearts and adjusting attitudes subconsciously.
Next, think about your kids and how they receive love (if you’re not sure, read up on their love languages. Intentionally take a few minutes to fill their tank first thing (or close to first thing) in the morning. You don’t like starting the day on empty, and they don’t either- though they may not have the words to say it.
For my kids it’s usually a few minutes of snuggles and chatting in the bed or chair before breakfast. It takes intention to slow down and just be with them on their level- but it makes so much difference in our day!
Finally, feed them a healthy breakfast! This requires some planning ahead for your meals but we all know that starting the day with a good solid breakfast (with good protein to avoid that blood sugar plummet!) helps everyone’s attitudes.
Invest in Your Day in Your Morning Checklist
Speaking of investing in good attitudes- we all know “if Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy” so making sure that YOU also have a good nutritional start to your day is equally important as giving your kids a good breakfast!
How you eat will affect a lot of how you function during the day, so taking that extra time to make yourself something good (instead of just eating the leftover cake) will go a long way in setting yourself up for a good day.
Along with this, make it a part of your mom morning checklist to make sure you take any medications or vitamins you need- as moms we tend to be great at giving those things to our kids and not so much to ourselves.
Remember- how you treat your body is modeling and molding how your kids’ treat theirs! So even if you don’t feel like doing it for yourself (I know some days I just don’t want to care), do it for the little eyes watching you.
Along with a good breakfast, I like to include a nice dopamine boost- do something for yourself that makes you feel good! I include it here because for me, that’s a homemade chai tea latte….that I usually end up drinking cold, but still…it’s something I don’t have to have that I do to show love for myself.
You could include this anywhere in your mommy morning routine checklist, and it can be anything that makes you feel happy (need some ideas? Check out this post for 100 of them!). That bit of a happy-boost for your brain is a great way to start your day right!
Use Your Morning Routine Checklist to Prepare for the Day
The next batch of items on your morning routine checklist should be going over your plans for the day. Up to a certain point, most mornings will likely look similar (hence the mommy morning routine…), but after that plans for the day will shape how the rest of the day plays out.
Look at your list (which ideally you’ve made the night before!) and talk with your family about what to expect for the day. Generally speaking, most kids like to know what to expect, and when clear expectations are laid out it usually helps to reduce tantrums and resistance when it’s time to move onto the next thing.
Along the same lines of keeping things flowing smoothly, this part of your mom morning routine is a great time to pack your bags for the day (one of my favorite mom tips)! Pack a bag for each place you’ll go so you don’t have to rush around last minute (and if you need to leave first thing, consider packing what you can the night before!).
Pro-tip: Keep a bag for each major activity so you only have to make small adjustments each time! In our house we have a bag for play dates, a bag for church, a bag for the museum, and a bag for going to the playground. Some things they all have (like diapers and wipes) and other things are specific (like a coloring book for church or a change of clothes for the museum), and each bag is appropriate for the location (backpack the kids can carry for church, bag that fits in the stroller for the museum, different backpack for play dates, etc.) so I don’t have to constantly shift bags and hope I got everything.
Your Mommy Morning Routine around the house
While a lot of housework will depend a lot on what the rest of your day looks like, there are a few things I recommend doing each morning- these are things I do and it’s made my mom life so much easier!
First, clean the kitchen. I usually do this while I’m eating/making breakfast. I run the dishwasher the night before and unload/reload in the morning. This starts me out with a clean space to make meals for the rest of the day and eliminates the frustration of not having what I need to cook later because it’s dirty, etc.
Second, and very related, prep for dinner! Whatever you can do ahead of time, I highly recommend doing it in the morning when you’ve got more energy. Chop veggies, mix sauces, cut up meat, or even get the whole meal in the crockpot- anything that makes your meal less effort later in the day. Maybe if you love cooking (I don’t) this isn’t as big of a deal, but for me, I need as little to do as possible by the afternoon!
Third, start a load of laundry. I know not everyone does their laundry schedule like this, but I like to do (at least) a load a day. So to keep that up, I start a load of laundry in the morning, switch it mid-morning, and then in theory fold it later in the day…or the next day…
Finishing up your Mom Morning Routine Checklist
One last piece of your mommy morning routine checklist: Breathe and smile. You’ve got this, Mama!
I hope you’ve enjoyed thinking through how to have a positive morning routine checklist! If you’ve been inspired to make your own checklist, be sure and put your email in below to get my free printable template to make your own beautifully designed Mom Morning Routine Checklist!
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