Thursday, March 21, 2013

The challenges of early rising {Maximize Mornings Challenge}

Now that Levi is older, and we are more set into our routines, it is time for me to make the most of my mornings.

Since in the past, I used to be up with Levi during the night, I would just wake up for the day when he would.

Now that I am not up all night (thank you Lord!), it is time for me to be back in the habit of earlier rising and making the most of that sweet time.

How early are we talking here?
It all depends on your schedule!
For me...Levi is usually awake around 8:30, so 7:30 will give me a good hour.
You need to have the kids out the door at 6?
Consider waking earlier, maybe around 5.
Start with an hour before the "day starts" and see if you have plenty of time to accomplish what you'd like.

Why are mornings important?

Whether you stay at home, work out of the home, or work from home... it's all true that once the family is up and running, the day easily gets away from us.
New things come up... new challenges arise...
and soon Plan A for the day has become Plan B.

The mornings, before the rest of the family is awake and no pressing responsibilities arise, you can have sweet peaceful time to be the best woman you can be for your family, and ensure a smoother day and a more calm spirit.

The Bible is also pretty clear on the importance of early rising.
If you do a simple google search on 'morning bible verses' there are many more than I realized!

My favorite one (and my inspiration)

I want the morning to set the tone for a day of joy and gladness.
This starts with time with the Lord.

What will I do with this extra time?

The first goal, should be spending quiet time in God's Word and in prayer and study.
I know for me, if it isn't done at this point of the day, it won't ever get done.
Once Levi is up, there are diapers to do, food to prep, a toddler to chase after, a home to clean, work to go to, etc...

So, first thing...find "your spot".
A spot in your favorite chair, your couch, make "your spot".

Have it equipped with your bible, pens, highlighters, a notebook, book of study, warm drink, etc.
But don't make it too comfy....otherwise you'll be right back to sleep!
Spend as much time as you are able praying and studying.
Listen to worship music on your iPod.
Help gain perspective on what is truly important on this blessed day.

So...I've finished my study time...and still have time...
What a huge blessing!

Here are my remaining goals when I have extra morning Mama time.
Go over my plans for the day.
See what I can do to be an extra blessing to my home or family.
{Extra load of laundry, a snack made, shirt mended, etc.}

I also prep for dinner
{chop the veggies, throw things in the crock pot}

disclaimer: I don't do this...but need to. Early morning is the perfect time to pop in an exercise DVD and start your day healthy.

 Resist the urge to get back in bed.
The best way to resist, is to make the bed as soon as you get out.
You'll be less likely to get back in, seeing how pretty it is. (at least for me!)

If you need to...take a nap when the kids are napping.
And adjust your bedtime so you are getting enough sleep.

Pretty soon, your breakfast date will be awake and your day will be off and running!

 A great additional resource is at Inspired to Action.
Kat has a free e-book all about Maximizing Your Mornings that you can get if you sign up for her email newsletter! It is great!

So ladies, do you maximize your mornings? Have any great tips? Or are you attempting to make a change and make the best of that sweet time, like I am?

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