Organize your attitude #17
by Kara Anderson of Quill & Camera
For a very long time, I have aspired to have Big, Grand Mornings.
And so last year I started setting my alarm unbelievably early so I could wake up to a quiet house and have at least an hour of peace and solitude.
I’ve heard this sort of time described as “finding myself before they (the kids) find me,” and that definitely applies here.
I want to be available for my kids when they wake up. I want to be Ready for the Day!, but I also really love a little time alone to properly caffeinate and figure out where I am.
I’ve found that when I get that chunk of time in the morning to get a cup of tea in me and read something encouraging, those days go so much more smoothly. I’m the kind of mom I want to be – more patient, more kind, more likely to serve a hot and wholesome breakfast instead of loading everyone in the car and going for doughnuts.
My goal is always to read a little, write a little, meditate, pray and think a little. If I am really going strong, I will move a little, but let’s not get crazy.
That’s sort of last on the list.
Of course, there are mornings when it just doesn’t work to wake up early – mornings when someone else wakes up too, or a pet has apparently exploded overnight; there are dishes in the sink and the gas man is pounding on the door.
And these days used to feel like a loss to me.
They used to feel like a mess and a failure, and a few mornings in a row like these were enough to upset the delicate morning ecosystem entirely.
Before I knew it I would be back to waking to a busy house – the train was already leaving the station and I was chasing it in my PJs.
And so if last year was about learning to have a good morning routine, this year has been about being OK with a less-than-perfect one.
On my best mornings, I cycle through my little basket of books and I read and journal. I listen to good podcasts or an audiobook. I take a walk or do a short yoga class, or at least I do some deep-knee- bend-thingies while filling the kettle.
But on those not-so-great mornings, I still try to do something now, even if it’s just reading that day’s devotion in my copy of Savor. Even a little morning routine can make a difference.
And whether I am scrubbing the stove or trying to figure out what melted in the toaster, I try to breathe a little, and set a simple intention for the day – maybe it’s to be patient and kind, maybe it’s to have genuine fun with my kids. Maybe it’s to go get doughnuts not because we are having a crisis, but because doughnuts just sound really good.
Even when whatever is happening around me is out of my control, I try to take just a few minutes for a compressed and far-less- than perfect morning routine.
And it still helps. It’s better than nothing at all, and it’s far better than feeling like the day is already on a hopeless crash course at 7:30 a.m.
I’m learning that a little morning routine is better than none at all.
A little intention can save the day.
Being OK with little is changing my mindset.
Maybe it could change yours too?
Kara S. Anderson is a writer and homeschool mom, driven by an unknown force to write everything down, which most recently includes how her family studied history this year. Connect with her at her blog or on Facebook.