A morning routine something important. For me when I stick to my morning routine, it means less screaming at the kids and way less stress for me. I don’t like to rush my kids or scream at them (who does!?!?). Whenever I do I spend the rest of my day feeling bad about it and I don’t think that it can be good for them to be yelled at. Which is why I try to wake up before my kids. That is my time to eat breakfast in peace and have some me-time. After I’m done I wake them up early so they have time to get ready.
My kids move so slowly in the morning and they take forever to get dressed because they get distracted by everything. That’s why I want them awake on time.
A good morning routine starts the night before. Everything that you can prep the night before you should prepare the night before. Think of lunch, breakfast, clothes, your bag. I can’t think clear early in the mornings so I prepare things I need to take with me in the morning the night before. For example the signed form for the kids’ school. If I don’t prep it at night I’ll forget it, or remember way too late and end up rushing.
Whether I wake up early or not, the sequence remains the same. So the individual steps don’t change. My eldest doesn’t cope well with changes, so the sequence of the routine stays the same, even if the time differ. He is also a very visual kid, so a routine chart is very helpful. I would definitely advice to have a routine chart. For little kids they can be made with pictures and you can make them yourself or buy them.
Sometimes I still run late. Either because I turned off the alarm clock, didn’t prep the night before or I run out of time, because I think I have plenty of time. If I wake up late I skip the me-time and wake them up immediately. A good way to make kids rush without actually rushing them is making a game of it. For example by making it a race: who can get dressed the fastest! Or sometimes I dress my kids even though the eldest can dress himself. For me this backup routine is lifesaving.
If all else fails I turn on the TV for them. I don’t like to resort to putting them in front of the TV, but it works. The alternative is rushing while my kids want my attention and that’s when the yelling and the stress starts. I prefer an educational TV show to that!
Of course there are also times that everything goes smooth and we end up being ready before it is time to leave. It doesn’t happen a lot, but when I does, I use that time to start my evening routine. I’ll start preparing the breakfast and lunch of the next day. That way I have less to do when I return from work. Yay!
So to summarize I don’t think a morning routine should very complicated. It just needs some elements:
- A good evening routine
- A backup routine for the times when you are running late
- The sequence of the routine must be the same and in my experience it also helps to have a routine chart in place for the smaller kids
- Make it a game for them to get dressed fast!
- If all else fails, you can use the TV. It is a last resort, but it won’t kill your kids to watch some TV.
What does your morning routine looks like? Do you even have morning routine? Please leave a comment below.