Office Space is my all-time favorite movie. I can practically quote the entire movie, start to finish. I have found myself in similar “Milton” situations where my working space was moved so frequently, I ended up on a folding table in a hallway. My husband’s response? To buy me a red stapler. (Funny, right? No? )
But one of my favorite characters is actually the secretary, who walks over to the protagonist. As he is being grumpy, she replies “looks like someone has a case of the Mondays.” This sentiment can be felt by so many working moms across the country. Yes of course we have bad Mondays. And Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. The only day that tends to go OK happens to be Fridays.
Here’s how I tackle mornings, with a morning routine, so that I show up to work happy, healthy, and far from grumpy.
Wake Up Earlier Than I Should
I am the type of person who is compelled to stay in bed as long as possible. In fact, my pillow has a magnetic force that pulls me back to it whenever I try to lift my head. Yours, too? Crazy how that works.
To combat this supernatural force, I set my alarm to 15 minutes before I’m “supposed” to wake up. I also set my alarm for the appropriate time.
By giving myself a bit more time to wake up, I’m not thrown into total panic mode when I wake up.
I can instead, roll over, grab my phone and watch a funny YouTube video, or catch up on last night’s Facebook happenings. I allow myself the extra time to gracefully wake up without purpose.
When the second alarm goes off, that’s my cue to put the phone down and get going.
Have a Morning Routine
I’m sure you’ve heard all the research about creating a routine for yourself. I, too, will share in the advice and say its my saving grace. Instead of having to think about my next step, I’m now on auto-pilot.
What does that look like for me?
5:30 – First Alarm Goes off, grab my phone
5:45 – Head into the shower
6:05 – Dry off, and pick out my outfit for the day and wake up Mini Me
6:20 – Blow dry hair
6:30 – Put on makeup
6:45 – Check jewelry, shoes and accessories
6:50 – Grab bag, computer, and off we go!
You may notice I don’t eat breakfast, nor do I work out. I eat breakfast at the office or just grab a cup of coffee when I get in. Working out? Well… I’m not the best at adding that to my routine like I should. Its more of a focus in the evenings.
I keep my morning routine very simple.
I also corral my kiddo, but with her being more independent (yay for 12-year-olds), I typically check in with her several times in the morning (get in the shower, get OUT of the shower, do you have everything for school, etc).
Wake Up With Gratitude
While I am walking through my routine, I try to keep my thoughts positive. Whether its going through my day’s itinerary or running through yesterday’s events in my head, everything I think about has a sense of positivity. I am extremely grateful for my career and my family, so anytime I am thinking about things I might dread doing, I change my thoughts. I find ways to be grateful, even telling myself how lucky I am to get to do something I love or how grateful I am for a supportive family.
Keeping my mind on the positive things going for me helps my mornings get off to a great start.
Find the Fun in Mornings
Mornings are not fun, at least for non-morning people like me. I try to find ways to instill fun in my morning routine. Whether its binge watching a Netflix show while I do my makeup, or watch last Saturday’s SNL skits, I turn on my iPad and enjoy the nice distraction.
Laughing my way through the morning sets me up for a better day.
One thing you may notice a lack of in my morning routine above, is checking my work email. I try really hard not to look at my emails in the morning. I realize some mornings I break that rule, but if I can put off reading them until I get into work, I’m better off. (Less dread, less focus on what I have to do when I get in, etc.)
I once had a boss who gave me great advice about my career: you are NOT saving lives – you can take a break from your work.
Take moments to not be so driven, and instead, enjoy your morning.
Spend Moments with My Daughter
I try really hard not to create conflict in the morning with my daughter. She is also NOT a morning person (moreso than I), so stirring up conflict can become disastrous for her day. I weigh the options of whether what I want to fuss at her about will truly be worthwhile.
Instead of criticizing her on clothing choices, I find ways to help her during the morning.
These moments where I make her day go smoother become opportunities for us to bond. Conflicts with Mini Me will create a bad mood for me going into work. I choose to reduce the conflict and keep a positive attitude for both her and I.
I definitely do not dread going to work like Peter in Office Space does. I really enjoy my work. But it is hard to not have a “case of the Mondays,” when you create chaos instead of have a solid morning routine. I choose to have a simple, morning routine focused on positivity.
What does YOUR morning routine look like? Do you enjoy watching TV, or find another distraction that helps ease you into the day? Leave a comment below with ways you tackle mornings.