If you are following along in our Hope for Homemakers journey, you are likely getting up a little bit earlier than you were a couple of weeks ago. You may be only getting up 15 to 30 minutes earlier, but you are an earlier riser (not a necessarily happy, early riser). And you may be still struggling to make those few extra minutes count. You may also be getting tired earlier in the evening. If you are listening to your body and heading to bed, you are doing great! We didn’t start rising earlier just to feel sleep deprived and exhausted, but to get a couple of extra things done while the house is quiet.
The next step in our process of organizing and gaining/keeping momentum in our homes is to create and keep morning and evening routines. In the book One Bite at a Time, these are projects three and four. I love the perspective Tsh offers regarding making these routines a priority and a habit in our lives. Regarding a morning routine, she writes:
A methodical morning routine is a great way to treat yourself to a little soul care. Instead of starting your day by responding to the stimulus around you, you’re proactively creating the day you want to have.
And regarding the combination of a morning and evening routine, she encourages us in this way:
When you bookend your days with a simple routine, they’ll feel less chaotic, and you’ll be more in control. These routines will be a salve to your soul.
I have been brainstorming the things that I would like to get done before my head hits the pillow in the evening. I have also been brainstorming what I would like to accomplish in the morning.
But let’s define some terms here:
I am thinking of evening routine as a bedtime routine. I am thinking of it not as a series of chores I do before I go to bed, but as the process of slowing my body down before I lay down at night. I am tempted to say that my evening routine will include doing the dishes and wiping down the counters and sweeping the floors and, and, and… BUT we already created those habits through our 28 Days to Hope Challenge. So, this new routine is all about winding down my day in preparation for the next day.
I am thinking of a morning routine as something new for my day as well. I am not talking about a list of chores to get done before the noon hour. Rather I am thinking of a routine for tending to the personal aspects of my day. These are the things that tend to get left behind in the busyness of the day: taking a shower, exercising, and the like. I am not saying I don’t want to accomplish other non-personal things in the day, but I desire to focus in on getting these things done before a certain time in the morning. Since I get up around 5 AM each morning, I am setting a goal of having my morning routine done by 10AM.
Now you may be wondering how these things have anything to do with organization and momentum in our homes. But I think they are linked. I think if I feel put together, well-rested, and energized for my day, I will behave in a more organized way in other aspects of my world. As I create my morning and evening routines, I will likely find areas of my life where I can be more organized. If I am just focusing on establishing and keeping these routines this week, I can also take a few minutes to put it all in order, to make the completion of the processes more likely.
As we establish these morning and evening routines this week (and keep them in the weeks to come), I will be writing more specifically about each of my routines and will share at least one organization challenge. You don’t necessarily have to get up early to establish these morning and evening routines. So, if you are still hitting snooze a couple of times in the morning before rolling out of bed, don’t worry! No matter what time you get up in the morning or go to bed at night, you can follow a set of steps to make your day easier. Choosing how to you begin and end your day will make a huge impact on how you work through the rest of your day.