How to Create a Morning Routine

How to Create a Morning Routine: Free Printable Worksheets

It’s no secret that I enjoy my mornings. After making a few changes almost two years ago, I finally created the early morning habit I always wanted. Today I will share a few simple steps to help you create a morning routine that works for you. There are even a few worksheets to help you plan it out!

How to Create a Morning Routine: Free Printable Worksheets

What would you include in your ideal morning?

Let’s first get an idea of what your ideal morning would include. As you approach this, remember that this ideal morning is just your starting point to plan your mornings and figure out what changes you need to make to reset your mornings. Grace and flexibility in your schedule may be necessary, but we do need to start somewhere with our ideal schedule.

Start by thinking of the activities you would do during your ideal morning. List everything below. There is no need to be realistic with this list. Do not think of your schedule and time constraints. List it all!

Here are a few ideas:
•Exercise
•Start a load of laundry or another chore around the home
•Read your morning devotion
•Shower
•Prepare and eat breakfast
•Tidy your home for 15 minutes
•Read a book
•Work on your side business or blog
•Write a list of 3 things you are grateful for
•Spend 30 minutes working toward one of your goals
•Write something or journal
•Listen to a podcast
7 Habits to Add to Your Morning Routine

List what you would include in your ideal morning. (Sign up to get the worksheets below!)

Then go through and star your top priorities.

How to Create a Morning Routine: Free Printable Worksheets

Plan your ideal morning routine

You need to decide how much time you could have each morning for your ideal morning activities. (Even a few minutes can help you be refreshed and ready for your day!)

When do you need to be available for your children? When do you need to get out the door for work? When do the requests and demands of others start to come in? I will call this time the END time of your ideal morning.

Based on the time the requests start and the amount of time you want each morning, decide what time you need to get out bed each day for your ideal morning. This is the BEGINNING time of your ideal morning. Once you have your set times, focus on staying consistent. One of the keys to waking up easier is to have a reasonable and consistent bedtime and wake time.

Write down your starred top priorities from the list above. Next to each priority, write down the time it will take each morning.

Make a schedule for your morning

Now that you have your beginning time, end time, and priority list, let’s put together a sample of your ideal morning. It’s not enough to give yourself an hour and plan to get your top 5 priorities in every morning. It’s important to look at the realistic amount of time for each priority and allow for extra or transition time.

I find it most helpful to write out a schedule for the morning. Once habits are in place, this may not be necessary. When initially making big changes and resetting your morning, it’s key to write this down.

Based on your priorities and the time you want for each, create a morning schedule to get started.

First list your daily habits, which are part of your daily routine. Then list your specific goals and priorities for the morning. This second list is more of a to-do list for the tasks that may change from day-to-day. After your lists are made, put the tasks into your schedule.

Grab your worksheets to help you plan your morning routine! I hope your new morning plan makes you refreshed and ready for the day!

How to Create a Morning Routine: Free Printable Worksheets

Subscribe below to receive the printable worksheets: How to Create a Morning Routine



How to Create a Morning Routine: Free Printable Worksheets
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Stop by to see where I link-up my posts each week: Link-Up List

8 Ways to Drink More Water Every Day

8 Ways to Drink More Water. With free printable water intake tracker.

Do you want to make changes to your health, but don’t know where to start? If so, watching your water intake can be the perfect place to start. It’s a simple, small change, but has so many benefits. Just to name a few: Water gives you energy, your skin looks better, your kidneys work better, it helps keep away headaches, and so much more. Your body just works so much better when well hydrated!

8 Ways to Drink More Water. With free printable water intake tracker.

If you need to be reminded of the benefits of drinking water, check out the following links:

Why can staying hydrated be so hard? If you have trouble drinking enough water, I have a few tips to share with you. Here are…

8 Ways to Drink More Water Every Day:

Set a Goal

Decide how much water you want to drink each day. Read this article if you are having trouble figuring out how much water you should drink. Your weight, exercise intensity and frequency, environment (you’ll need more in the hot summer!), and other situations will come into play. Don’t get stuck on the actual amount. If you don’t want to think too hard on this step, you can start with the common eight 8-ounce glasses of water because it’s simple to remember.  

I find it easiest to set just one goal for the day and then break it out by my desired number of ounces. If your goal is 64 ounces and you have a 16-ounce water bottle, think of your goal as 4 water bottles for simplicity’s sake.

If you need to take the goal further, set a goal to drink a certain amount at set times during the day. For example: drink 8 ounces as soon as you wake up or drink 8 ounces of water before each meal (this can also curb calorie intake if that interests you).

Track Your Progress

Track your progress on paper. Here is a printable tracker for you to use:

8 Ways to Drink More Water Every Day with printable water intake tracker

Track your progress on an app. Here are a few apps to try: Daily Water Free, Water Drink Reminder, iDrated, or Waterlogged.

Get a water bottle that helps you track your progress. This water bottle even has an alarm to remind you to drink!

Get stickers to add to your current planner or notebook.

 

Find a water bottle you’ll actually use

Have you ever purchased new workout clothes to help motivate yourself to workout? This is the same thing. If you are excited about your new water bottle, you might be more likely to carry it around with you all day.

I currently use Ello BPA-Free Glass Water Bottle with Flip Lid.

I used to have the Thermos Intak Hydration Bottle with Meter. This water bottle has a rotating meter on the lid that helps you monitor your daily water consumption.

If you enjoy infused water, you could try out Asobu Flavor It Glass Water Bottle With Fruit Infuser.

Keep water with you at all times

Now that you have a water bottle you like, keep it with you all day. If you don’t have water easily accessible, it’s easy to forget to drink up. It’s much easier to fill up when your water is nearby. Keep water at your desk at work or keep a glass of water by your bed.

Add flavor and find a water you enjoy

If you do not enjoy the taste of plain water, try making infused water. It’s quick, simple, and can be inexpensive. I don’t mind the taste of water, so I used to think it was a waste to spend ANY time or money to make infused water. It was easier and cheaper to just drink from the tap! But…this summer I tried cucumber water and I am sold. It is so refreshing!

Check out this post for ideas or follow these simple steps to make cucumber water:

  • Scrub the cucumber (or peel it) if you do not use organic. You will want it super clean if it’s floating around in your water.
  • Slice up the cucumber and place it in a pitcher.
  • Pour water over the cucumber and put in the fridge for a few hours.
  • Drink up!

Eat your water

If you have trouble drinking enough water, consider focusing on water-rich foods. Watermelon and cucumbers both have a high water content. Here are 15 foods to help you stay hydrated.

Get your children involved

Find a water bottle your child enjoys using. If they have a water bottle to carry around, you may be less likely to forget yours. My girls love their Klean Kid Kanteen Stainless Steel Bottle.

Dilute your sugary drinks with water or ice.

This may take some getting used to. If you drink juice, lemonade, or other sugary drinks on a daily basis, consider diluting your drinks to cut down on your sugar intake. You will still enjoy the sweetness of the drink and it will be healthier than drinking so much sugar and calories. Once it’s diluted, you can drink more! If I give my girls juice or lemonade, I always water it down a bit. They don’t even notice and still think it’s a treat!

Don’t forget to print off your printable to track your progress. Share on Instagram for social accountability!

8 Ways to Drink More Water Every Day with printable water intake tracker

I hope you find these tips helpful! What tips and tricks do you use to stay hydrated?

8 Ways to Drink More Water. With free printable water intake tracker.

Drinking more water was my Mini Goal for July. I would love to have you join the 12 Mini Goals Challenge. Sign up for my mailing list if you want to be e-mailed the challenge each month. If we get to a month where the goal doesn’t fit into your life, you can always tweak it to be a mini goal that works for you.

If you want to focus on Health & Wellness and want to record your goals and track your progress, check out my Health and Wellness Printable Planner.

Use the Health and Wellness Planner to:

  • Plan and track your fitness, nutrition, and wellness goals and habits
  • Create action steps necessary to fulfill your goals
  • Bring your new healthy habits into your daily schedule
  • Plan and track your workouts
  • Plan and track your meals
  • Track your vitamins, supplements, and other medications
  • List your favorite resources to aid and motivate you on your health journey

Health and Wellness Printable Planner.

Hold yourself accountable with your health goals with this printable planner. The Health and Wellness Printable Planner includes 9 pages. Use them all or pick and choose based on the plan that works best for you. The entire planner is undated so you can start using the planner at any time throughout the year. 

This post contains affiliate links.

Stop by to see where I link up each week: Link-Ups

How to Develop a Pleasant Tone with Your Tribe

How to Develop a Pleasant Tone with Your Tribe

I would like to welcome Ruthie from Rear. Release. Regroup. I enjoy the wisdom that she shares on her blog and in her new book:
Count to Nine, 9 Liberating Steps for Mom Anger and Frustration

How to Develop a Pleasant Tone with Your Tribe
by Ruthie of Rear. Release. Regroup.

How to Develop a Pleasant Tone with Your Tribe

Do you have a pleasant tone of voice when you speak to your children or give them a directive? (Are you rolling your eyes at me right now?)

I will admit right up front that I’ve always struggled with this one. My tone of voice is awful when I’m irritated or even just focused on my own “plan” (quite possibly mowing others down in the process).

Proverbs 12:18 (NKJV) says:

“There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword,

But the tongue of the wise promotes health”

Does your voice sound like claws on a chalkboard when you speak to your kids?

I hate the way the first part of this verse sounds.

I don’t want to figuratively pierce my children’s hearts.

But I LOVE the second half of the verse!

I want a wise tongue that promotes health and healing! Don’t you?

Plan of Attack

1.) CHECK your tone before you speak. Take a few breaths, put your hand over your mouth if necessary (Proverbs 30:32)

2.) PRAY quickly and ask God for help

3.) PRETEND your child (or husband) is someone who just called and you automatically changed your tone so they’d think you were nice (SEE??? We ARE capable of it)!

4.) CREATE lists. Lists were my very best friend when getting my kids to do their chores or help with spring cleaning. If they didn’t have to hear it from me, somehow it went better! Kids love checking things off and getting it done! (Doesn’t everyone?)

5.) SPEAK HEALING to your child each day. Find ways to compliment for a job well done, a rare moment of sharing, or anything positive you can find. Make sure you’ve done this at least once before going to bed at night. And be SURE to always say, “I love you”!

As always, the best way to cut out old habits is to establish new ones. We must replacing our negative tone of voice with positive speech and affirming words. Even if we do slip up in a moment of anger (and let’s face it, we all do), if we make a practice of graceful speech, it will go a long way with our tribe.

Scripture Pillar

If you have been foolish, exalting yourself, or if you have been devising evil, put your hand over your mouth. Proverbs 30:32

Did you see that??? Sometimes, I just need to put our hand over my mouth. What about you? What a practical suggestion straight from God’s Word!

How to Develop a Pleasant Tone with your Tribe. Count to Nine, 9 Liberating Steps for Mom Anger and Frustration

My new book, Count to Nine, 9 Liberating Steps for Mom Anger and Frustration, presents nine essential steps to overcome anger. Offering Scripture Pillars (ACTION verses), Scripture prayers, a plan of attack for each chapter, this book will set you on the road towards recovery. The book is full of key Biblical strategies to help you parent gracefully and learn the Biblical approach to anger.

How do I know? I teach this method to a group of moms, and they are seeing wins and overcoming their anger by implementing Scripture Pillars (ACTION verses)!

At just $7.00, this book is a small investment to make toward a big difference in the dynamic of your family. Are you ready to take the necessary steps to freedom and let God control your anger?

Processed with VSCO with m3 preset

Ruthie Gray is a wife, mom of four, Gigi, and caregiver, living in the sandwich generation and blogging to keep her sanity. When she’s not snacking on plastic drumsticks with her two-year-old grandson, The Tiny Tornado, you can find her coaching other moms on how to raise responsible kids and enjoy them at RearReleaseRegroup.com.

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Thank you to Ruthie for sharing with us today! Stop by and check out her blog: Rear. Release. Regroup. or consider checking out her book: Count to Nine, 9 Liberating Steps for Mom Anger and Frustration

Count to Nine, 9 Liberating Steps for Mom Anger and Frustration (2)

This post includes affiliate links.

Stop by to see where I link-up my posts each week: Link-Up List

How to Develop a Pleasant Tone with Your Tribe

Monthly Goals – July

Monthly Goals - July

My Monthly Goals…Why do I set them? Why do I share them here?

  • Setting goals helps me remain focused.
  • Sharing my goals helps to hold me accountable.
  • I hope that it may inspire you to set goals for yourself.

Are you new to goal setting? Here are a few posts that may help or inspire you:

Monthly Goals - July

Sleep

June: If you have been around my blog for a while you may know that I originally started it as a way to create an early morning habit. Read more about My Morning Motivation here. Due to the sleeping issues with one of my daughters and pregnancy exhaustion, my mornings reverted back. I still would get up a little before my daughters, but I was missing the hour or so I used to have every morning. My mini goal for June focused on resetting my mornings. My goal was to get up at 6 AM every morning.

I did a decent job on this goal for the first half of June. Then vacation, pregnancy tiredness, and books that kept me up too late stopped the early morning waking. I’m not going to beat myself up over this as I know when I need to get more sleep, but I want to get back on track in July.

July: I want to focus more on getting to bed at a decent time. I would also like to wake up at 6:30 every morning. This won’t allow for much time before my girls get up, but it’s better than nothing!

If you have trouble making sleep a priority, check out these helpful resources: Sleep It Does a Family Good and Make Over Your Mornings.

Exercise

June: Cardio 3-4 times per week. Try to walk or run (I’m done with running this pregnancy!) at least once per week. DONE. 

July: Cardio 3-4 times per week. Try to walk at least once per week. Do you need tips on getting exercise into your daily life?

Weekly “date” night with hubby

June: One movie, game or date night per week. Done for the first few weeks of June, then vacation happened.

July: Continue one movie, game or date night per week. We have been using VidAngel to watch movies at home. It’s just $1 per movie, we don’t have to leave the house to find a Red Box, and it’s not a subscription service. We have watched well over 20 movies with it and are happy with how easy and cheap it is. I wrote a post about VidAngel if you are curious how it works.

Monthly outing with our family

June: Plan one fun activity for the four of us in June. All 4 of use didn’t get to the Farmer’s Market like I hoped. Just the girls and I made it to the market. We had an almost week-long trip to the cabin and a family wedding so that counts as quite a fun outing for us!

July: Plan one fun activity for the four of us in July.

Habit from my 12 Mini Goal Challenge

June: In June, my goal was to reset my mornings and get up at 6 AM every morning. I did a decent job on this goal for the first half of June. Then vacation, pregnancy tiredness, and books that kept me up too late (I couldn’t put down The Light Between Oceans!) stopped the early morning waking. I also stopped tracking my bedtime and waketimes. Because I started to ignore writing anything down on my goals calendar this became less of a priority. I want to get back on track in July, so I will be carrying this over to July.

Read more about my 12 Mini-Goals Challenge.

July: Drinking water is not the habit it used to be. Because it is summer (and I’m pregnant), I often have a feeling of thirst and know that means I am dehydrated. In July, I am going to try and stay on top of my water intake. Join me and get the printable tracker to record your water intake in July!

12 Mini Goals Challenge (4)

Faith

June: Read Daily Devotional New Testament: Through the New Testament in a Year every morning. This daily devotional includes two readings from the New Testament, a short reflection, a portion of the Psalms and a thoughts for prayer section. I enjoyed reading this devotion every morning. I have spent the last year or so changing up my daily devotion and I liked just having one that I go to every morning.

July: Continue to read Daily Devotional New Testament: Through the New Testament in a Year every morning.

Morning devotion with my girls

June: Read a daily devotion or bible story with my girls at breakfast each morning. Because I slacked on waking up early midway through June, our morning routine went out the window. I stopped tracking this goal and forgot about it towards the end of the month. I will need to get back into writing down and tracking my goals.

July: Read a daily devotion or bible story with my girls at breakfast each morning. I wrote more about this new morning routine here.

Books

June: I finished Brooklyn. I read the Amazon reviews when I was 100 pages in and not that into it. One reviewer said they didn’t appreciate the book until the end. I thought it was ridiculous to keep reading if I wouldn’t like it until the end. But…I finished it and I’m glad I did. I completely agree with the reviewer as I appreciated and enjoyed the book more and more as I approached the end. The movie is enjoyable too!

I read The Light Between Oceans. Whoa. The emotions in this book. I highly recommend!

 

July: Read one book.

Girls

June: Get the girls outside to play at least 5 times per week. We had no trouble with this goal.

July: There is no need to keep this goal around as we are spending plenty of time outside. I will probably be adding it back in during the fall. When the baby is here and it’s chillier, I may need more motivation to bundle the girls up to play outside.

Home

July: Backup pictures on my computer.

Monthly Goals – July Monthly Goalsetting and accountability.

June Blog Goals

  • Post new printable. – Check out my Travel Planner Printable!
  • Promote Ultimate Homemaking Bundle Flash Sale. – Complete.
  • Clean up mailing list. I am using the free account through Mailchimp, which limits the number of subscribers. I cleaned up my list a few month ago but keep approaching my 2,000 subscriber max. I need to clean up my list to delete old, inactive subscribers. – I decided to bite the bullet and sign up for Mailchimp’s paid account. While I try to keep my blogging expenses minimal, I think this a good decision. I can now focus on growing my list and can use the additional paid features within Mailchimp. 
  • Once room is opened up for new subscribers, add a content upgrade to 10 Habits to Add to Your Evening Routine. – I am switching gears on this goal.
  • Send a survey to readers. – I sent my survey to my newsletter subscribers. I received more responses than I expected. If you filled it out, thank you!! The responses were both interesting and helpful. I now have an idea of what direction I should go on a few ideas I have. *The survey is still open if you want to fill it out.
  • Look into adding CommentLuv for commenting. – After a bit of research, I decided to keep my commenting as is.
  • Get a better Boardbooster plan. – Not done. I am going to skip this goal and call it good enough for now.
  • Set up sharing schedule for new posts. Possibly make a printable for this? – Not yet done.
  • Set aside time to plan next printable workbook or other printable project. – A small amount of time, but yes.
  • Schedule new morning time three times per week to work on above goals. – Complete during the first half of June. 

July Blog Goals

Because I tend to create a long list of blog to-dos, and don’t have the time to do them all, I am giving priority to the goals above and will move onto the goals below once they are done.

  • Set aside time to plan next printable workbook or other printable project. Possibly based on the survey responses.
  • Set up sharing schedule for new posts. Possibly make a printable for this?
  • Update About Me or Start Here page. 

If you blog about goals, I would love to have you stop by the first Wednesday (at 7 AM EST/6 AM CST) of each month to linkup your goals post. We look forward to reading your posts and encourage you to look around at the other posts linked up here.

Please join us to share your goals and progress for the week, month, or year. We are all about building a positive community; please remember to read, comment on, and share the post of others. 

Monthly Goals - February. Stop by to link up your goals post on the first Wednesday of each month...With Grit and Grace...a monthly goals linkup

Just a reminder…
  • All forms of goal posts are welcome. They can be for a specific area in your life, or your general goals for the day, week, month, or year. We love to hear updates on your progress too. Please only link up posts involving goals.
  • Make sure to use the URL specific to your post and not your blog’s homepage.
  • Link back to With Grit & Grace with our image or link in your post or party page.
  • Comment on the post prior to yours in the link-up. Support others through comments and shares.
  • By linking up, you give us permission to feature an image on our blog and social media. Proper credit and links will be given.
  • Join in on social media with: #withgritandgrace.
  • We want to support you! Please follow your hosts in some way.
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Stop by to see where I link-up my posts each week: Link-Up List and Blog with Intention

July Mini Goal: Drink More Water

12 Mini Goals Challenge (4)

This post is part of my 12 Mini Goals Challenge.

Small daily habits can make a big difference over the course of a few weeks, months, or even longer. In 2016, I am going to focus on a new habit or mini goal every month. In January, I focused on Daily Movement or Exercise. In February, I focused on cutting down on evening snacking. In March, my goal was 30 days of pilates. In April, my goal was to clear my kitchen counters every night. In May, I attempted to clear out my closet 3 items at a time. In June, my goal was to reset my mornings and wake up earlier.

I know the importance of drinking water and I used to not have any trouble staying on top of it. When I worked a desk job a few years ago, I would guzzle water all day long. I probably reached the water recommendations by the time I left work. I never was thirsty because I was on top of my hydration.

Now that I am home with my girls, I don’t have a water bottle with me every minute of the day and drinking water is not the habit it used to be. Because it is summer (and I’m pregnant), I often have a feeling of thirst and I know that means I am dehydrated. In July, I am going to try and stay on top of my water intake.

My July Mini Goal: Drink More Water (80 ounces of water per day)

How will I do this? I will follow these steps:

  • I will drink 8-16 ounces of water right away in the morning. This will be before my morning coffee. 
  • I will keep my water bottle close to me during the day. This is the water bottle I use and love.
  • I will track my progress in 8-ounce increments. Printable below!
  • I will reevaluate the goal of 80 ounces throughout the month. Because it is summer and I am pregnant, 80 ounces may not be enough water, especially on days that I am outside in the sun or on days that I exercise.

July Mini Goal: Drink More Water with printable tracker

Your July Mini Goal: Increase and track your water intake. 

If you need to be reminded of the benefits of drinking water, check out the following links:

If you want to join me, print off the July Challenge Tracker. Place an X in each box as you drink your decided amount of water. I also track multiple goals on my calendars, and the calendar leaves room for additional notes each day. It’s nice to have them written down all in one place. Use the hashtag #12minigoals on Instagram to show me your progress.

 Mini Goals Challenge for July: Drink more water

Let me know if you decide to join! How much water will you be drinking in July?

If you want to focus on Health & Wellness in July and want to record your goals and track your progress, check out my Health and Wellness Printable Planner.

Use the Health and Wellness Planner to:

  • Plan and track your fitness, nutrition, and wellness goals and habits
  • Create action steps necessary to fulfill your goals
  • Bring your new healthy habits into your daily schedule
  • Plan and track your workouts
  • Plan and track your meals
  • Track your vitamins, supplements, and other medications
  • List your favorite resources to aid and motivate you on your health journey

Health and Wellness Printable Planner.

Hold yourself accountable with your health goals with this printable planner. The Health and Wellness Printable Planner includes 9 pages. Use them all or pick and choose based on the plan that works best for you. The entire planner is undated so you can start using the planner at anytime throughout the year.

 

July Mini Goal: Drink More Water with printable tracker

 

I would love to have you join the 12 Mini Goals Challenge. Sign up for my mailing list if you want to be e-mailed the challenge each month. If we get to a month where the goal doesn’t fit into your life, you can always tweak it to be a mini goal that works for you.

This post contains affiliate links.

Stop by to see where I link up each week: Link-Ups

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