During a recent client session, an area of focus was on how to create less chaotic, stress-free mornings.
Contrary to what you might think, the issue wasn’t about getting up earlier. In fact, most of the adjustments we made focused on what could be done the night before.
This article follows on from the principles in my last post – Be Prepared! Why Planning Is Not Enough – and expands on ways to make our mornings in particular run like clockwork, not a runaway train.
10 Things you can do tonight to create a stress-free morning:
- Preview – View what’s on tap tomorrow. Is it business as usual or is there anything that might require extra materials or preparation? Don’t be caught by surprise.
- Gather – Collect everything you’ll need to take with you and place it in a consistent prominent place at or near the door. If lunch is in the fridge, place a note on your briefcase to remind you.
- Plan Your Journey – Going somewhere new tomorrow? Don’t go to sleep wondering how you’ll get there. Map out your journey tonight and include a couple of alternate routes for contingency.
- Coffee / Tea Station – If your household is like mine, the day starts with coffee. The quicker the kettle goes on and I’m sipping java, the better. Prep a station for your favourite morning beverage so it’s ready to go first thing.
- Pack Lunches – Make it part of the kitchen routine following dinner – you’ll be in there anyway, so build in a few extra minutes and get it done. Don’t go it alone, if children are old enough enlist their help. Many hands make light work. *Plus if you have breakfast as a family, now’s a good time to set the breakfast table, another step saved.
- What to Wear – What is more frustrating than trying to piece together an outfit scattered all over the map, minutes before you need to leave? Prepare your complete attire from head to toe, inside out, including all accessories. Getting dressed will be a breeze.
- Workout Prep – Not making it out the door for that morning run or trip to the gym? Assemble your sport kit by your bed so all you have to do is get up, get dressed and off you go. One less thing to think about at dark o’clock.
- A Place For Everything – Nothing creates calm in the morning like a tidy orderly home. Do an evening sweep of your household and return things where they live. Done daily it should take minutes. Do it without fail.
- Wind Down – Mornings are better following a good night’s sleep. Allow time for your brain to shut down from the day with a pre-sleep routine thirty minutes or an hour before bedtime. You might read, relax, draw a hot bath, etc. whatever you like as long as it’s relaxing and signals sleep time to your body. Be sure to dim the lights and avoid looking at screens as they keep your brain awake – yes, put the smartphone, tablet, laptop down and slowly step away.
- Consistency is King – There will be times you won’t feel like preparing or keeping to the plan. But it’s the consistency in those efforts that will keep your mornings running smoothly and make all the difference in how you start your day. Don’t let yourself down, you’ll thank yourself in the morning.
What do you do that makes your morning run like clockwork? Leave a comment below!