SCHOOL MORNING...NAILED IT!!!
Today these beautiful little humans were full of love and joy and ready to go and own their day! Yesterday was a different story though…as were a few days last week.
Prior to today we’d had a run of 💩 school mornings in our house. This led to some head scratching and frustration by me and probably a whole bunch of confusion for the girls. Not a great way for any of us to start the day let me tell you!
Yesterday after school drop off I did some serious self-reflection. 'What the heck was going wrong?' our mornings used to be awesome. We had plenty of time for cuddles, laughs, even playtime outside before we'd head off to school. But recently something had a gone amiss.
MY INITIAL REACTION WAS THAT CLEARLY THE KIDS WERE BROKEN!!! Something was going on with their behaviour. They weren’t listening, they were dragging their feet, they were arguing with me and each other and it was affecting my mood and making me a bit crazy.
BUT when I actually took the time to pause, take a breath and look inward I quickly became aware of the issue...they weren't broken at all. They were and continue to be perfect! Me on the other hand...not so much.
See, some time back I'd figured out the perfect flow for our mornings. It was life changing when I realised that I was the one who's energy and intention completely dictated the course and feel of our mornings. Upon realising that I took massive action. I started getting up almost 2 hours earlier than I used to, I took time for self care and mind, body, soul alignment and a cuppa in peace before the 'school morning' began. That way when the kids got up I was overflowing with love and gratitude and ready to pour into them. I would stick to our morning schedule that both them and I knew worked and we would cruise through our morning with ease, love and joy. The kids would have time to play at home before we left for school and play again at school before the bell rang. It was awesome!
And then…I let things slip! I let TV creep into ‘breakfast time’, I let craft activities start BEFORE they were completely ready for school, I changed the order of a few of my morning tasks and then before I knew it our mornings were chaotic, rushed, shouty and overall…CRAPPY!
So how and why did I it happen? Well, it wasn’t intentional nor was it sudden. It was a gradual process of letting little things slide which eventually led to mayhem. The biggest factor was that I wasn’t being intentional and mindful about our mornings. I was no longer connecting with the feelings that those beautiful mornings brought to our home. I wasn’t taking the time to pause, be present and connected. I was looking outward, I was judging and blaming, and I wasn’t owning my part in the situation.
As soon as I took a moment to pause, look inward, hold myself accountable and own the chaos I had created I was able to turn it around.
AND TURN IT AROUND I DID!!! This morning was awesome! We found our flow again, we loved on each other, we played together, we cruised through the morning speaking with love and kindness and life was once again as it should be.
I got to send my precious babes off to school with beautiful smiles on their faces once again. All because I took the time to look inward rather than outward for the cause of the chaos.
This was another beautiful reminder for me that we all have the power to create chaos or calm. To live in overwhelm or flow. It’s as simple as tuning in to what we desire, making a choice to create it and then taking the required action to bring it to fruition!
If your mornings are mayhem and you want some tips on finding flow, then please read on!
1. Get up before the kids!
Now bear with me here.
I know for a lot of you reading this your initial reaction may be something like ‘no way’, ‘I’m not a morning person, ‘I’ve tried it and I just can’t do it’ etc. I hear you! I get it…I used to be exactly the same!
I would drag myself out of bed each morning exhausted, stroppy and in desperate need of a coffee before I could even begin to communicate or take the action required to 'get through' the morning mayhem that was about to ensue. I was chasing the clock from the second my feet hit the floor and was immediately bombarded with the morning demands from my kids. It kinda sucked!
BUT what if you started your day just 30 minutes earlier with a peaceful cuppa and maybe a good book, or a meditation or some journaling or…whatever YOU desire and decide is the best start to YOUR day? Imagine the flow on effect that could have on the rest of your family. When they get up your soul could be full, your mind could be calm, your brain could be ‘switched on’ and ready to own the day ahead. Surely that’s worth getting up 30 minutes earlier for right?!
Here are my tips to getting started and sticking with it:
~ Go to bed 30 minutes earlier at night (I use an alarm to remind me that I have 15 minutes to finish what I’m doing, pack up and get ready for bed)
~ Set your intention for the morning BEFORE you fall asleep. While laying in bed remind yourself of WHY you’re getting up early and what it will do for your day and that of your family.
~ Set your morning alarm and then place it somewhere out of reach from your bed. That way you have to get up to turn it off...no more snooze button.
~ Feel into it. When you get up and you’re sipping on your hot cuppa or you’re reading, meditating, scrolling on social media (I wouldn’t recommend this but if that’s your thang then go for it), whatever it is that you desire just be present. Enjoy it. Savour it. Acknowledge the fact that it’s YOUR time. If you can connect with the positive feelings and benefits of your early morning, you’ll be more likely to continue.
~ Push through the hard part. So, I’m not gonna lie…at the start it can be pretty tough. For the first couple of days, or even weeks, you might spend your early morning time in a sleepy daze wondering why this seemed like a good idea. This is normal and not the time to throw in the towel! Remember why you’re doing it and stay the course…It does get easier I promise. And once you start seeing the benefits you’ll wish you started years ago!
2. Be prepared!
Like a good scout…be prepared!
There are so many things you can do the night before in order to make your mornings flow (I personally do most things in the morning however, I do get up VERY early cos that’s my jam). But for those that don’t want to get up at crazy o’clock, getting prepared in the evenings is a great option.
~ Prepare school lunch at the same time you’re preparing the evening meal. You’re already in that meal prep headspace…and physical space…so why not smash it out at the same time!
~ Lay each child’s school clothes out in the location that they usually get dressed…This includes underwear, socks and shoes. That way your child can get dressed quickly and independently (assuming they’re old enough to dress independently of course).
~ Pack bags. Have hats, readers, library books, homework, school notes, news etc in their bags the night before.
3. Set alarms!
I use alarms on my phone ALL THE TIME!
I have an alarm that sounds 15 minutes before we need to be in the car leaving for school. As soon as it sounds everyone in the house knows it’s time to hustle. These days we're usually ready before the alarm even sounds but for those slower mornings this works beautifully.
You may even wish to set additional alarms in the morning to keep you in flow when you’re adjusting to your new morning routine. An alarm for breakfast time, teeth or hair brushing, getting dressed etc. In my opinion you can never have too many alarms when you’re changing things up. It truly makes the transition so much easier!
We LOVE music in our house! It’s one of the most powerful ways to raise our energy and flow.
Witnessing how quickly some good tunes can turn things around is pretty incredible so I encourage you to try it out, if you don’t already do it.
I have various playlists that I refer to for different activities throughout my days and one of these playlists is ‘morning motivation’. It comprises songs that are high energy with uplifting lyrics and are songs that the whole family enjoy.
5. Move closer!
Don’t get louder…move closer!
When we’re feeling overwhelmed and chasing the clock we often shout demands in the general direction of where we last saw our children. Of course, they don’t respond so we shout louder. Then if they still don’t respond we go and find them (with or without stomping and scowling) and then yell at them because we’ve been shouting out for the past five minutes and they haven’t responded. For them this could be the first time they realise you wanted them to do a particular task and they’re met with mumma losing her mind about it. It can be pretty confusing for them as you could imagine.
Also worth noting is that you’ve just wasted five minutes shouting at them and getting frustrated only to ‘move closer’ in the end anyway.
So I encourage you to PLEASE try this one out!
As the first step breathe. Then walk over to your child and ask them, with love, to please do a task (even though they’re required to do the same thing EVERY SINGLE DAY and it’s frustrating that you even have to ask them…I mean, they should just do it right?! But they often don’t so just accept it and it’ll make you way less crazy). If after you’ve asked them nicely, they still don’t do it go to them again and remind them, with love, that you’ve asked them to do something and they still haven’t. Also remind them that you really want to have a beautiful morning with them before they head off for the day, so you don’t want to keep reminding them of the same thing over and over because that will lead to you getting frustrated. Sounds so simple right? Perfect! No excuse not to do it then!
If you stay calm and bring love to your interactions your children are far more likely to do what they’re asked. Kids, as all humans, have an innate desire for happiness so if you create an environment of flow and love they will thrive!
I'd love to hear from you...
If your mornings are mayhem then please try these simple steps and let me know how it goes for you!
If you’ve already found your morning flow then please share your tips in the comments.
If the mayhem and overwhelm extends beyond just your mornings then please get in touch to see if I can support you.