I was recently asked the most important part of my morning routine. The answer to that is COFFEE! Yes, all caps! It’s my morning alarm, sending me into the chaos of prepping for the day.
On a more serious note (not that COFFEE isn’t serious), I start my day the night before it begins. For me, all organization is done the night before. Clothes are picked out, lunches are made — and coffee is ready to be brewed. Being organized saves me time and money. Yes, being organized keeps me away from morning drive-thru coffee or breakfast. More importantly, it allows me to start the workday with a calm frame of mind.
But what is it that keeps others organized? Could I learn from the way others manage their mornings? I Googled this question and found a lot of advice on getting up early, eating a healthy breakfast, exercising and meditating.
There was, though, one thing that was consistently stressed: take time to choose the most important task of the day and do it first. Studies show, not surprisingly, that our energy and concentration is best first thing in the morning. So, that’s the perfect time to take on our most important work. Planning to address that work early in the day is key to feeling accomplished.
The other common theme I noticed is that many folks, like me, start planning the night before. This is a common theme on business blogs and organizational blogs. And it popped up frequently when I started to ask around the office.
Just today, I took an informal survey around the Hanscom Federal Credit Union office, and here are some of the answers to my question, “What is the one thing you do in your morning routine that you recommend to others?”
Bill: “If I make a list at the end of the day of things I need to get done tomorrow — review the list the following morning — I get so much more done in a day’s time.”
Sheryl: “I like to have a few minutes of quiet time, watch the birds and reflect on the blessings in my life. It helps to put me in a positive mood.”
“Patti: “It’s not so much what I do in the morning that helps. It’s preparing the night before: laying out everyone’s clothes, packing lunches and snacks, getting backpacks together and leaving them by the door, etc. I have been known to put everyone’s cereal bowl, cup and spoon out on the table the night before to save time in the morning.”
Samantha: “Every morning before work, my fiancé and I made scrambled eggs and toast and eat breakfast together. The days that we don’t get to have breakfast just never seem to go as planned!”
Delroy: “After my alarm goes off, I lay in bed for ten minutes to get mentally prepared for the day.”
Ferdousi: “I prepare the night before. I try to coordinate my outfit and all the things I need for my dogs in the morning.”
How do you prepare for the day? What advice can you share about your morning routine? Tell us your favorite tips below!