We’re all about routines on The Feisty House this week. Yesterday we went through a complete breakdown of the elements that should be a part of your skincare routine, and today I’m sharing my morning routine and daily schedule.
I’ve known for a while that my usual morning “routine” (if you can even call it that) doesn’t work. It goes something like…wake up pressed for time at 8:00 (because I’m too tired and unmotivated to get up any earlier), hurry to get my blog posted to Facebook and Google+ by 8:30, rush to get ready for work by 9:30, never take lunch (because I have no time to make lunch), do a “phone, wallet, keys, Metro card” check at the door around 9:45 and pray that I’m sitting at my desk sometime by 10:15, which will give me about 10 minutes to prepare for my first morning meeting at 10:30. It’s awful. I start every morning way behind, so I end up at work until 7:00 or 8:00 at night (or later) just to make up for the fact that I made it into the office so late.
Last month I was lurking on a For Women to Women chat on Twitter and connected with Courtney of Think and Grow Chick (she writes a crazy amazing blog, by the way!) who shared her morning routine with me and then told me to get my life and figure out a routine for myself. So before I left for Thailand, I tried putting a morning ritual together. Slowly I started waking up a bit earlier, and I even exercised one morning, but I still hadn’t put pen to paper and scheduled my mornings.
Then finally while lounging in Phuket (an amazing place to get your thoughts together!) I was catching up on a few issues of Fast Company and read this amazing infographic: “A Day in the Life of Your Most Productive Self.” I mapped out my entire day (morning to evening) right then and there, and I’m going to share it with you right now for two reasons: (1) to encourage you to do the same, and (2) to keep myself accountable, as this week will be the first time I attempt to follow through with this new daily routine (so far so good).
My Morning Routine
6:00 AM // Wake up, complete a workout, eat breakfast
7:00 AM // Get ready for work
8:00 AM // Schedule posts from The Feisty House to go live on social media
8:30 AM // Leave for work
9:00 AM // Arrive at the office, take some quiet time for devotional
My Workday Schedule
9:30 AM // Do a quick scan of my emails, adjust my calendar as necessary
10:00 AM // Time to tackle the highest-priority task on my to-do list
11:00 AM // Check work email, check in on social media channels
12:00 PM // Begin the second priority task on my to-do list
1:00 PM // Have lunch, go for a walk outside the office
2:00 PM // Set aside time for a meeting, or spend time on another priority task
3:00 PM // Check work email again, respond to emails that need follow-up
4:00 PM // Catch up on recent research articles and news reports
5:00 PM // Check voice mail, write tomorrow’s to-do list, and review calendar/do light prep for the next day’s meetings
6:00 PM // Leave the office
My Evening Routine
6:30 PM // Arrive home and take 30 minutes to unwind alone
7:00 PM // Cook and eat dinner
8:30 PM // Blogging and personal email
10:00 PM // Shut down the computer, get ready for bed
10:30 PM // Read for 30 minutes
11:00 PM // Time for bed
After I scheduled my day, I was surprised by the amount of time I gained, especially at work. My workday used to just run away from me. But looking at this schedule, I have at least three hours each day to work on my to-do lists, plus time to read and analyze new reports and studies (which I’ve been struggling to keep up with as of late) and check email. Email is definitely where I waste the most time at work. That and meetings! This year I want to drastically reduce the amount of time I spend in meetings.
The other thing I love about this daily routine is that there’s a decent amount of “me time” in there. I have time to spend with the Lord, a break in the afternoon to go on a walk, some downtime when I get home from the office, and I can read before bed! Where did all this time come from???
Okay, needless to say, you can’t schedule everything. This doesn’t account for the time I spend on the phone with family and friends (and I want to get better at staying in touch this year, so I imagine I’ll be spending quite a bit of time on the phone), or for those trips to CVS before I head home, or doing any housework. BUT it is a pretty decent starting point, and I’m sure I’ll fall into a rhythm eventually. As you start to create your morning routine or daily schedule, remember that things may change, and you may find that you need to change things in the beginning. That’s okay! Just be sure stick to the routine once you find the rhythm that works for you. Soon it becomes second nature, and that’s what we’re aiming for: natural productivity.
Do you have a morning routine of your own? What are some of the things you do each and every morning? And have you gone so far as to schedule your entire day? Let us know!