The magical morning routine ... doesn't exist!

If we STOP and think, slow down and listen when work and life gets stressful, we might be able to access the agility we need to get back on track quicker.

Mornings can be stressful

I'm forever searching for that magical morning routine, one that ensures that my kids and I are ready and out the door (well before the school bell) relaxed and looking forward to the day. 

This scenario rarely happens. Often I, or the kids (or both!) get sidetracked and the minutes escape into a black time hole leaving me having to do many small tasks (refocus kids from their playing, brush teeth, shoes on, last loos, pack bags, do hair) last minute which turns me into a 'monster mum' by the time we head out the door.

But what if I'm approaching it in the wrong way? Could taking a more iterative, flexible and task-focused approach help me get everything organised in the morning without having to turn into a robot or sergeant major! 

Slow down!

This morning I told myself to slow down. And do you know what happened? I became more aware and able to focus on my tasks and make the little adjustments to the routine needed to make it run smoother.

Not all mornings are the same so you can't have a one-size-fits-all solution. However many tasks you do are constant — have a shower, get dressed, have breakfast, make lunches, clear dishes, check schedule for the day etc. Some of these things need to be done in order, others don't. So if the bathroom isn't available for brushing teeth then put on shoes while you're waiting.

Using this approach

So how could this approach help in work and life in general? How many times do you feel like projects forge ahead, when taking stock and redirection is needed. If it feels too hard, there is probably an easier and better way.  

Take time to stop and think, slow down and listen. Perhaps go back to defining the key tasks and working out what 'flows' are critical and what can be rearranged? 

Life is not a action movie!

And even if you don't get the kids to school on time, or narrowly miss a deadline, remember you're not in the final moments of a blockbuster movie when you have only seconds to diffuse a bomb. Deadlines are good for focusing the mind and scheduling your workload, but the world will not come to an end, and isn't it more important to produce a good result?