Jumpstart Your Day With A 'First Thing' Routine

Jumpstart your day with a first thing morning routine

One thing I wish I would have started earlier in life is maximizing my mornings.

Here’s what my mornings used to look like…

  • Rolling out of bed as late as possible

  • Starting the day half-asleep and annoyed

  • Meeting everyone’s requests/demands for breakfasts, shows, tasks, etc.

  • Scrolling on social media and getting totally sidetracked

  • Scrambling to find everything we need before we get out the door, only to realize a shoe ( or keys, phone, bag, homework, etc.) has gone missing

These days mornings are almost my favorite time of day.

There is nothing like getting to 9 AM and feeling like I’m ahead of the game.

I love that moment when I look around and realize it’s still early but the house is picked up, my inbox is clear, I’ve had time to stretch, read and relax and everyone is fed, dressed, prepared, and off to school.

The rest of my day can be focused and productive instead of scattered and reactive.

The switch for me was making a habit of a ‘First Thing’ Routine.

Doing a few key things right away can make all the difference. So if you feel like your mornings need a makeover, now is the time! Here’s what I do to start the day off right….

How I Jumpstart My Day

Set Your Alarm To Music

No one really want to wake up to the sound of an annoying bell, beeping, or a toddler saying, “Mommy! I’m hungry.”

Most of my family wakes up at 6:00 so even just setting it a few minutes before they are up is helpful for my mood. That way I’m fully awake and thinking straight before anyone needs something from me. Whatever time you get up, just make sure it’s early enough that you can take your morning SLOW. Give yourself up to an hour or two before you need to leave.

Also pick a good song for the alarm on your phone. If it makes you want to dance or smile vs. groan, you’re on the right track.

Morning Stretch - First Thing Routine

Stretch It Out

Taking 5 minutes to stretch is amazing in the morning. Touch your toes. Roll your shoulders. Stretch your neck.

If you’re a runner, this could be a perfect time to throw on headphones and get in a quick run. However I like working out at night, so I just do a short 5-minute stretch to get rid of that morning creaky feeling. It’s pretty calming.

Need workout inspiration? 8 Fun & Easy Home Workouts

Morning cozy space

Cozy space + Drink

It’s SO much more appealing to get out of bed if you’re trading one cozy space for another.

I get out of bed, stretch and then switch to a cozy chair with a blanket and bottled water. (Or make yourself a green tea, coffee, quick breakfast, etc.)

Then find a space that is slightly removed from everyone else for a little while to just be. My kids know to play quietly or do their own thing until breakfast. Then we start that part of the day together.

Morning devos - First Thing Routine

Get In a Good Headspace

Something chill like reading, devos, prayers, etc. is really good for me before I have to start meeting the demands of the day.

Most mornings I read my Bible because it changes me. There is nothing else that gives me new perspective, thankfulness and wisdom like the Word of God. It gives the day meaning and purpose.

So I spend a few minutes in YouVersion and do my Echo prayer app because I also like knowing the people I love are prayed over before the day begins.

Other times I read a really good book on Kindle just to give the day a peaceful vibe.


Morning Routine - Day plan

10-Minute Day Plan, News + Inbox

Once I’m in a good headspace, I check out my planner and list out the top 3 tasks for the day and my general schedule. Then I peek at my email inbox through my phone and spend 2-5 minutes clearing it out or just dealing with the urgent things.

I archive or delete anything I don’t need and then quickly answer any emails I can in 3 sentences or less. (Here’s why it’s 3.) Using my phone helps me to be brief.

I also get the Skimm (It’s a little biased, but I get the gist) and a few other news emails that fill me on what’s happening in the world without me needing to get too sucked in to social media or long articles.

Gather morning essentials - first thing routine

Line Up Essentials

Before we have breakfast, get dressed or any of that, I line up the essentials we’ll need to get us out the door.

I tend to always think I have more time then I do getting everyone dressed and ready but I hate scrambling out the door.

There’s nothing worse than not being able to find an essential when you need to get going.

So gathering everyone’s bags, lunchboxes, shoes, gloves, coats, keys, etc. right by the door BEFORE we get ready helps us to be able to grab it all and go when it’s time to leave.

Quick Declutter

Okay I’m not going to lie, cleaning usually gets saved for after I take the kids to school.

But if we HAPPEN to be a few minutes early getting ready for the day we do a quick declutter.

I try to just focus on clearing the main surfaces and putting things away. That alone makes a huge difference at our house.

If it’s before school, I have the kids help out by making beds, putting clothes in the basket, clearing their breakfast dishes, etc. (But like I said, it’s usually me doing the Roundhouse Clean or 30/30 App after I drop them off ha)

Want to start everyday with a clean space?

What things could help you feel more normal in the morning?

If you could get to 9AM with a clear head and mostly cleared plate, what would you need to put in your ‘First Thing’ Routine? Share your ideas below!