Do You Have a Morning Routine?

So how do you start each day? Are you the kind who jumps out of bed before the alarm rings? Or do you hit the snooze button over and over again? Whichever type you are, once you are up and at it, do you have a morning routine? Not being a morning person myself, the whole idea of a morning routine has been a long-time coming for me. But I see the validity of so much and untold numbers of books expound upon this strategy.

Foundations

As a building’s foundation is the basis for the whole structure, so your morning routine is to the rest of your day. We’ve all had those mornings where something didn’t go right and it threw us off the remainder of the day. Sometimes it is bound to happen as we can’t control everything, right?

One of those books that has helped me the most is “The Miracle Morning” by Hal Elrod. If you need inspiration to develop a morning routine, I highly recommend you buy it and get started right away! One of his comments is:

“When we fail to make time for personal development
we are forced to make time for pain and struggle.”
~ Hal Elrod, “The Miracle Morning”

Hal’s book explains his method of “S-A-V-E-R-S” that he does each morning ahead of starting his day. If you enjoy self-improvement and personal development books, this is a great one to read!

Now Matters

One of my favorite phrases from Hal’s book is this:
“Now matters more than any other time,
because it is who you are becoming each day based on
the choices you are making and actions you are taking
that is determining who you are going to be
for the rest of your life.” ~ Hal Elrod, “The Miracle Morning”

I find that so very powerful!

Morning Focus is a journal I write in each morning for the “scribing” portion of the SAVERS process. It’s been tweaked as time goes by, but here’s some information if you want to start a similar journal.

Format Options

There are endless options for how you do your morning routine. When I first started, I had a separate page for each of the SAVERS topics where I wrote out the description of each. I also found a really pretty floral date stamp that I use on each page. Originally, I wrote whatever came to me that morning of the current thoughts and situations in my life. Putting those thoughts out on paper – the good, the bad, and the ugly – was a good start for me. Sometimes it was positive things, or thankfulness for a special event, or sadness over a disappointment.

Then last year, @Amy Hale on InstaGram shared her morning routine. I liked her format so much, that I it’s the one I use currently. For me, it gives a little more consistency in what I write each day. It also gets my thoughts started in a broader sense since there are specific categories to write about. Obviously, you can choose whatever fits your personal needs and preferences.

the morning focus moleskine is mainly writing in a few categories - no decorative stuff in this one

Praise

My Morning Focus starts with two short phrases of praise. As a cancer survivor, my first “praise the Lord” is always for another day, because each day is truly a gift. The second is something as simple as rain, or sunshine, etc.

Thanks

The next block is “Thanks”. This is where I write out specific things from the previous day that I am thankful for. That can be thanks for a person, something I accomplished, an event I went to, or all of those things.

Confess

Third is “Confess”. Sometimes this is very personal and other times it’s about things going on in someone else’s life I care about. Basically, anything that is heavy on my heart and I feel the need to express it. That can be very cathartic to write out those details.

Pray

The next topic is “Pray”. This is a great reminder to think of others and their needs. Sometimes writing these out can spark a thought of what I can do to help or reach out to someone.

Today

The last item is “Today” where I write out in short summary what my plans are for the day. Obviously, I use my weekly bullet journal for the specific details, so this is simply an overview of the day.

I keep this journal very simple and basic – there’s not even any washi tape – ha! However, I do add color to the flowers on my date stamp and then highlight each of the topic names. Then I go back and read/pray through each item just to allow everything to sink in a bit more.

That’s It

So that’s it! The scribing part of my morning process takes about ten minutes each day. I’ve found it’s such a great start to my day to get me focused on blessings, along with challenges. Taking time to think of others and their needs provides perspective before I start on the tasks of my day.

How about you – do you have a morning routine that gets your day started right? If not, I challenge you to read Hal’s book “The Miracle Morning” and then start your own morning journal. And just a little footnote, after you read that, be sure to get his newest book called “The Miracle Equation”. If you’re anything like me, it will be life-changing and I just finished reading it one week ago!

And speaking of new, be sure to read the next post: https://yourlifeinjournals.com/planning-for-new-growth

What Interests Call Out To You?

So what are you passionate about in this crazy busy world we live in? What interests call out to you? You may have several areas of life that particularly pique your fascination. If that’s the case for you as it is for me, then perhaps you will want several different journals. The bullet journal planner has worked so well for me to stay on track with what needs to get done. Because of that, I’ve actually expanded my use to include additional traveler notebooks for other specific topics.

Categories for bullet journals

Here are some ideas of other topics you could create a separate traveler notebook for:

artisan covers, known as traveler notebooks, for various topics of interest

1) Financial
~ one journal for cash spent daily
~ one journal for credit card purchases
~ one journal for specific projects or goals to save for

2) Inspiration
~ one journal for current Bible study or devotion
~ one journal for quotes or sayings
~ one journal for gratitude
~ one journal for Miracle Morning

3) Gifts
~ one journal for each grandchild
~ chronological covering birthday, Easter, Christmas for each child.
Someday this will be gifted to them and will be great fun for them to look back on when those gifts of childhood years have been long forgotten.

4) Garden – one journal where I write all plants I purchase in the Spring
then I track each work day in the flower beds
photos of each bed mid-season when in full bloom,
notes of what to do different next year, etc

5) Morning Routine – one journal for daily thoughts, gratitude, reflection, etc

6) Household – one journal for hospitality such as meals, guests, etc one journal to record info on appliances, or cars, or remodel projects, etc

7) Moving – this will be my new addition to my anthology as we start to plan for the next phase of life and all the preparation that will be involved

8) Junk Journal – for the crafty side of you or as a gift

9) Art Journal – for the artsy side of you

10) Christmas Planner – one or more inserts as you prefer for gifts, events, decorations

11) Lists – bucket, movies, songs, books, travel goals, trackers

What about you?

So what about you – what interests call out to you? You may be a museum aficionado who wants to keep track of all these ones you’ve visited and all those still on your list to see. Or are you a traveler and need a place to keep track of all the interesting places you plan to visit. The possibilities are endless – it’s up to you and what you are passionate about. Once you start using a bullet journal, I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if you end up adding to your collection like I have! For ideas on other journal topics, be sure to read the next post:
https://yourlifeinjournals.com/morning-routine

Are You Ready To Commit?

So, are you ready to commit to this new adventure using a bullet journal planner? I’m so excited for you to get started. Just in case you are a little fuzzy, here’s a recap of what you’ve accomplished so far:
1) You decided you need to get certain areas of your life under control
2) You decided what topics & events that you need to capture
3) You chose your size and style of planner/journal
4) Once you purchased your inserts, you did the first two steps of Create & Plan. You created your weekly, monthly, and notes insert journals.
5) Today’s challenge is to determine the actions you are going to take for the third step of your CPR, which is Record.

Record – when and how

The obvious best choice is to do this daily. Your greatest results will come when you make your goals daily and keep track of what you’ve accomplished. The main thing for you to decide is if you want to work in your planner in the morning, or afternoon, or evening. Which will be the best time for you to be consistent and make this a habit you keep up with? After all, who needs another half-used journal, right?!

So think these through:
~ Are you a morning person?
~ Do you work second or third shift and need to do this after you’ve slept, so
perhaps afternoon is best for you?
~ Or are you a night-owl and find that evening is best for you to plan the next day?
~ Also, are you going to print photos and save memorabilia to put in your journal?
If so, will you print your photos daily or weekly?
~ How about the memorabilia? Will you tape it in each day or will you wait until the
end of the week and enter all your photos and memorabilia at once?

It doesn’t matter what your answer is. It only matters that you figure out works for you so you actually DO it each day or each week.

Follow through

So there you go! Decide which time of day is going to be your best choice for a consistent time to make plans in your journal. Decide if you will write, or add photos, or memorabilia, or all the above.

Now start! It’s as simple as that.

Remember, there’s no right or wrong way to do this. Only that you do what you’ve committed to do.

If you record daily – that’s awesome!


If you decide weekly is best – great for you! Don’t look at what the daily folks are doing and allow it to discourage you.

So are you ready to commit? Make your own goal and stick with it. Let’s get your activities and plans set in motion, so you can follow through better than you’ve ever done before. Be sure to read the next post:
https://yourlifeinjournals.com/what-interests-call-out-to-you