Mornings are hectic in many households. The scene plays over and over, day after day; parents trying to get ready for work, kids not wanting to go to school, trying to grab breakfast before making sure that each member of the family gets to where they need to be with everything they need to have.
I often liken the busy morning rush in our homes to that of a busy highway that is packed with anxious, stressed out drivers. Each of the drivers has a different destination and a different goal for the day, yet they have to get there first, which means battling rush hour traffic.
So here are five quick tips to making your home's morning rush hour battle a little more organized:
- Be Defensive: If you know mornings are a challenge at your house, take steps to make them less challenging by doing some tasks the night before. For example you can easily take time each night and: lay out clothes for yourself and younger children, make kid's lunches, pack your briefcase for work, make sure you lay out what kids will need for lessons the next day, etc... Anything you can do tonight to take away from your morning rush will save you energy and stress.
- Allow Extra Time: Even just an extra 10-15 minutes can make a big difference in your morning. Set the alarm back just a few minutes and give everyone in the family a little more breathing room. Keep in mind... this may mean hitting the bed a few minuets earlier too.
- Control your Road Rage: Fights in the morning between family members, set the tone for the entire day. If Mom and daughter have a fight in the morning- they both stay upset all day about it. So try to pick your battles wisely in the morning... is it really worth getting upset if your son wants to wear the red shirt with the green pants?
- Organize the Traffic Grid: Having an organized system for where children know to place items like backpacks, school books, library books, sports bags, etc... will save you from frantic last minute searches for the other soccer cleat as the bus is honking.
- Organize Fuel Stops: Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and often the most chaotic! Menu planning can help ease the stress of the morning meal. Decide what you are having for breakfast the night before and prepare ahead. For example if you are having cold cereal- set the boxes on the table with bowls and spoons. If you are serving muffins or pancakes- make them the night before and warm them up to serve to your family in the morning.
I know first hand that mornings can be difficult... but I also know that implementing these five steps has helped transform my family's morning chaos into more simple, organized sanity. Good luck!