This post is by Sarah Johnson.
I really didn’t want one more person telling me my life would be so much better if I rose an hour and a half or more before my kids to fit in prayer, Bible study, other reading, exercise, a shower, et cetera, et cetera.
Would it be glorious to get all that done first thing and with no children calling my name every five minutes? Yes! But if I wanted to get up an hour and a half before my kids, I would have to wake up somewhere between 3:30 and 4:30.
No, thank you.
I am not about that.
What I wanted was to start my day on the right foot, connecting with God, but without having to get up earlier than I already do and without any expectations of fitting in All The Things.
Enter the 3-minute morning. A perfect solution. I take a minute to pray and thank God for bringing me to another day. I take a minute to consider the day ahead of me. And then I actually get out of bed.
But, obviously, I need to seek God elsewhere in my day and make time to study his word. I need to plan more thoroughly and look not just at the day, but at the month or more ahead. I need to actually exercise my body.
I have learned to make time for these things that are important to me elsewhere in my day. I have 6 kids who are home with me nearly all day, every day. Making time is hard, no matter how many kids you have. So many things are vying for and deserve our attention throughout the day.
There is a meme I see shared every now and then that is the image of a triangle. It says “Pick Two” and each corner of the triangle is an option: your sanity, a clean house, and happy kids. It’s funny because it’s kind of true.
As moms and parents and human beings, we have to be really thoughtful about how we organize our time and what we prioritize, because most of the time when you choose one thing, you have to give up something else. But having a little time to do something for ourselves like talk to God or exercise is really important.
I have one suggestion if you need to grow your morning routine (but not in the morning): look for even a little bit of space somewhere else in your day, and draw boundary lines around it.
I could go all day long taking care of the kids and the house and hardly have a minute to pee, much less anything else. But my soul would probably die. (Highly sensitive person and introvert here.)
I have two time boundaries in my day. The first is what we call “quiet time” in our home. When my oldest two began dropping their naps, I knew that we all still needed a little rest time. They didn’t have to sleep, but they did have to do something quietly in their rooms for X amount of time.
The second time boundary is at the end of the day. After we have read to our oldest kids and told them good night, Mom and Dad are Off Duty. We do not clean or work anymore after they go to bed. This down time at night has been so important for me, as a person who needs more alone time than the average bear, and for us as husband and wife.
Daily quiet time and downtime at night have allowed me to have time to do things that are important to me, without feeling like I am sacrificing relationships or important time with my kids. And, as an added bonus, without giving up precious sleep!
Sarah is a stay-at-home, homeschooling Mom to six kids, two dogs, two cats, and one husband. You can find her trying to keep it real on Instagram @callingupsarah and her blog, http://www.callingupsarah.
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