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How to Create a Daily Routine

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“You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily.  The secret of your success is found in your daily routine” -John C. Maxwell

I used to not really have much of a routine when I first became a SAHM.  My son was on a crazy schedule because he thrived that way, but personally I was a hot mess.  I would do some chores here and there and visit the park, but mainly I’d watch TV during nap time and be in my jammies until 10 or so.  There’s nothing wrong with that, but my life felt like Groundhog Day.  While I was a great, attentive mom, I was not productive at all, did nothing for myself and was definitely NOT the best version of me.

I started looking at the holes in my day and how I could better fill them, even looking up routines of successful people to try get ideas. First thing I did- turn off the TV.  I didn’t realize how much I watched until then.  Then I sat down and decided what I ultimately wanted to accomplish… what specifically I needed to change.

  1. Get organized.
  2. Stop feeling frumpy.
  3. Increase productivity
  4. Regain my identity.

I got lost after having my kids.  I went from taking a full load of college courses and working full time, to suddenly being a stay at home mom.  I had always been a student and made my own income; now I relied on someone for the first time in my life and also had babies relying on me.  I was scared to death of failure and no longer had dreams that existed beyond loving and supporting my family and paying bills.

Change didn’t happen overnight, but I worked hard at creating a new routine to set myself up for success.  Here are some of the ways I turned my life into what I wanted it to be.

Plan out your day the night before.

  • Make a list of everything that HAS to get done and add things that you WANT to get done.  List bills that need to be paid, chores that have to get finished and always something that you can do that will push you toward a goal.  For example, I enjoy writing my blog, but I don’t have much free time for it, so I will put as a task for the day “shoot exercise video”.  Obviously to complete the entire project will take much more work than that, but at least its one step closer to my overall objective.  If your goal is to lose weight, you could add “meal prep lunches” or “go to the gym” on your list.  It’s very exciting to cross things off and that keeps you working and on task.

Budget your time.

  • I can’t clean my house top to bottom every day, it’s just not realistic.  I split my chores up throughout the week and deep clean one section (bathroom, kitchen, etc.) every day.  I also do a “guest is coming over” clean to all the rooms each day.  You know that speed at which you rampage through your house making sure everything is picked up before a guest comes over?  I do that for a few minutes in each room so the house is never ridiculous. My chores take like an hour or two a day this way, so that leaves me plenty of time for other things I want to do.  Of coarse my house could always be a little cleaner and more organized, but I need/want time for my kids and myself too.

Make your health a priority.

  • Nutrition- Make your nutrition a top priority.  If I know my week will be too busy to make every single meal, I will meal prep what I need.  In 1 hour I can create an entire week’s worth of food if I have to.  I don’t want to eat a bunch of processed garbage because it makes me feel bloated and tired, so I don’t.  For me, it’s important to eat well, not just for weight management and to feel less frumpy, but for how it helps mentally.  I have more energy when I eat clean, which makes me more positive and productive.
  • Exercise-  It helps me clear my head and feel centered for the rest of the day. I can get rid of negative feelings which gives me more patience with my kids. I have a specific time that I workout every day.  I don’t skip it.  I plan my day around it.  Yes, I do have the advantage of owning a gym, but even before that I had a gym membership that had daycare.  My kids got to socialize for a couple hours and I got to workout.  If they were sick and I couldn’t take them, I would exercise at home while they napped. Just like with nutrition- it’s important to me, it makes me feel good, and that’s why it will always get done.

Surround yourself with positive people.

  • Being around negative people will make you feel more negative.  The best thing I could’ve ever done for myself was make my core group of friends people that are ambitious and positive.  I look up to my super mom friends, not for competition, but for inspiration.  We all cheer each other on and push one another to be the best versions of ourselves.  It doesn’t hurt that we all enjoy wine nights 😉
  • My husband will always push me and back me.  In his mind there is nothing I can’t do and he also has high expectations of me, just like I have in him.  We create goals together and work as a team to accomplish things.  I picked a great partner <3

Set and revisit your goals.

  • I create goals for everything.  Ex:  I want to lift X amount.  I want to do extra cardio X times per week.  I want to take the boys on at least X adventures per month.  I want the business to make $X this year.  I’m going to compete in X days.  I want to read X list of books this year…. whatever is important to me at the time.  Check out this post on how to set goals!
  • There is always something that I am reaching for.  I used to not have goals and I felt like life was stagnant.  I want to be more, do more, learn more and constantly improve myself.  Every time I make my daily checklist I ensure that I am taking steps closer toward my goals.

Start a morning routine.

  • Plan something that will make it easier for you to get up on the right side of the bed.  On non-work days I like to get my kids ready and make them breakfast, start the laundry (I do one load every day), then sit and peacefully drink my coffee.  My kids aren’t on top of me because they are fed, so I can take the time to revisit my checklist for the day and plan how I want to get things done.  I also take this opportunity to brainstorm and write my ideas down for whatever projects I’m working on.  After my coffee I get dressed (I count workout clothes as dressed lol) and get to work on my list. 

Do something nice for a stranger.

  • It is in my head that every day I WILL go out of my way to add some positivity to a stranger’s life.  Maybe I’ll compliment somebody or help a senior with their groceries.  Chase down animals to return them to their owners.  Let someone cut me in line if they have less items than I do.  Tons of little things can be done to brighten someone’s day.  Although I try to help people as much as possible anyways, making a conscious effort to acknowledge to myself that I am helping others in my sometimes chaotic life makes me realize that I’m being the person I want to be even if I don’t always feel like it. 

My to-do list typically is longer than the amount of hours I can accomplish those tasks, but every day I try my best to complete it.  Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t, and then I just transfer the leftovers to the next day.  Also, I like to work, but I’m not a workaholic.  On Sunday we close down the gym and have a family day.  There are also times where I need a break and I don’t make a list, I just watch Netflix in my jammies all day.  Establishing a balance and learning about yourself is the key.  I know when I need a break and I know when I need to step it up and push harder.

I hope this has given you some ideas on how to create a routine to improve your life.  Dreams don’t happen without work and work doesn’t accomplish anything if it’s not organized and productive.

What else would you add to your daily routine?

xo-jessica-signature

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