Crystal over at MoneySavingMom.com has written some great time management tips on how to develop a morning routine, which I’ve roughly adopted.
I work full time as a RN in a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and I do 3 back to back 12 hour shifts overnight. Then I ‘flip schedules’ the rest of the week when I’m off and have a normal sleeping schedule. This means that I’m really busy for a couple of days in a row and basically only work, eat, and go to sleep, then I have a long block of uninterrupted time to catch up on everything that has piled up while I was at work. Since my days off don’t have any imposed structure, it’s easy to let the day slip away in a blur of Facebook, Pinterest, and Real Housewives marathons.
I’ve found that following Crystal’s advice and setting up a morning routine has helped me increase productivity, both with my blog and housework. I’m somewhat embarrassed to say that when I first started my blog, I worked really hard at developing my following and spent almost all my free time slaving away at the computer. Now that it’s somewhat established, I’ve restored the balance to my life and having a morning routine has helped me stay focused.
Here is what works for me:
1. Feed the dogs and let them out, eat a light snack and hydrate, and check emails.
2. Go for a run and stretch afterwards. I like running first thing in the morning for several reasons: it’s cooler out, I only like to shower once, and I love the burst of energy it gives me to get through the rest of the day.
3. Water the trees and plants (every other day for most of our plants).
4. Shower and get dressed.
5. Plan my to-do list for the day. I split this up into categories for blogging, household chores, personal care, and errands.
6. Prepare for dinner in advance if necessary (I usually menu plan in advance – check out my weekly Menu Plan Monday posts)
7. I aim to write and promote at least one blog post early in the day. Then I alternate between blogging and housework the rest of the day, until my husband gets home. Then I try to close up the laptop and focus on our time together and the dogs the rest of the evening.
I find this routine helps make sure that every area of my life (health/fitness, blogging, household) gets equal attention.
Do you have a morning routine? What works best for you?