How you start out in the morning can make or break how the rest of the day unfolds. With a new school year here, revamp your morning routine--or implement a new one--with Mighty Mommy's 6 key ingredients for a successful morning start.
Tip #2: Have Easy, Better-For-You Breakfasts Ready to Go
I used to be one of those individuals who poo-pooed breakfast because I was always in a rush to get out the door on time. I figured I could make up for that missed meal either at lunch, or with a donut or other sugar-filled snack once I got to work. Wrong!
In our household of 8 kids, breakfast time can be insane as we try to get out the door to school, but there are plenty of healthy and yummy ways to make sure your family gets this important meal in before they board the bus. Here are a few suggestions that we enjoy in our home:
- Belgian Waffles with fruit. One night a week, I pull out the waffle iron and make a few batches of honey-wheat waffles, and then I freeze them in halves in individual Ziploc sandwich baggies. I also cut up strawberries, and keep bags of frozen blueberries on hand for my kids to sprinkle over them, along with some low-fat frozen Cool Whip.
- Egg McMuffins to go. I always keep a package of English muffins in the freezer for our version of the infamous Egg McMuffins. We simply pull them out and throw them in the toaster as we scramble an egg in the microwave. In less than 3 minutes, we have a cooked egg, toasted muffins, and when we throw on a slice of low-fat cheddar, the sandwich is complete!
- Yogurt and granola parfaits. If you have a tub of French Vanilla yogurt on hand, you can put some in a small bowl and sprinkle ready-made granola on top. We like to add sliced banana, as well. Again, this takes less than a few minutes to prepare and eat.
Tip #3: Get Up and Get Moving
Exercise is truly one of the best ways to jumpstart your day. I never paid much attention to exercising in the morning until I started having kids. Even when I had sleepless newborn nights, I found that if I could get out and take a power walk for even 20 to 30 minutes, I would gather up energy I didn't even know I had deep inside of me.
Exercising in the morning also helps clear your mind, and enables you to have a more positive mindset. It's also great for your physical well-being. Now that my kids are older (ages 8 thru 21), I take early morning power walks every other day, within 20 minutes of waking up. These quiet morning walks through our neighborhood and nearby areas enable me to focus on the tasks I have ahead of me for the day, as well as put an extra "kick" in my step for the rest of the day.
Tip #4: Establish and Review "Must Do" and "Must Don't" Lists
If you can snatch 15-20 minutes of quiet time each morning, this is a wonderful opportunity to work on creating and reviewing the important tasks and "to do" items that require your attention.
During this sacred time, however, try not to get caught up in frittering away your time with social media and personal e-mails. If you must check e-mails, have a system to help you streamline your efforts so you aren't wasting that precious, early morning alone time by getting caught up in chain e-mails, or reading ads from local stores, or getting wraped up in gossipy or other unproductive social media doings.
I personally have a handful of folks I won't open e-mails from until it's later in the day. These particular acquaintances are known for draining others, and now that I know that, I wait until I'm well into my day before giving away any of my energy to their requests!