Ultimate Morning Routine Checklist (that Changed My Life)

Creating a great morning routine has made such a difference in the way my days go.

morning routine checklist ideas

Because I’ve found that the rest of my day is usually a result of the way I started my morning – especially as a busy mom to two small kids!

Starting your day in a frenzy affects your mindset as much as it impacts the people around you.

And I’ll be totally honest with you – this was probably the reason, I used to lose track of time and struggle with being late for just about everything when I was younger!

If that sounds like you, I have a feeling you’ll find this post helpful too.

Keep reading for tips to:

  • create a good morning routine list
  • choose the best morning habits
  • my example routine with two kids
  • pinnable checklist

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links and I could earn a commission if you make a purchase using them. This comes at no additional cost to you and all opinions expressed are my own.

Ultimate Morning Routine Checklist (that Changed My Life)

Here are some ways to plan a morning routine that works.

How to create a good morning routine list

All good routines have a few things in common.

They’re consistent

Developing habits takes time.

You need to be intentional about your behaviors to turn them into habits that stick.

Atomic Habits is a must-read for diving deeper into this one.

They make you feel good

A great morning routine is one that you look forward to doing every day.

It doesn’t feel boring because you actually can’t wait to go to sleep and do it all over again!

They’re realistic

If you want to get several things done before the kids get up, you need to plan accordingly and wake up early.

I say this after a lot of personal experience with not giving myself enough time!

They offer room for growth

The more you practice the behaviors you want to make habits of, the better you’ll get at them.

And the more you practice the same sequence of events, the more efficient you’ll become!

More ways to have a productive day:

Example morning routine checklist

Here’s what I do every morning:

Wake up early

This one completely changed my life.

As a homeschooling mom of two young kids ages 6 and almost 3, I need to be really intentional about my time and find that I’m at my best first thing in the morning.

I used to make the mistake of staying up late and waking up just before the girls did but by the end of the day, I was completely fried and lacked the will to do activities that require brainpower (writing and working on my business, for instance).

Instead, I’ve started regularly waking up at 4:45 a.m. and have a solid 3 hours to myself each morning!

Testing different times made a difference for us.

For some reason, I found that my kids are more likely to wake up with my 5 a.m. and later alarms but apparently moving it just 15 minutes earlier was the sweet spot for all of us!

Try different times to see what works for your family and when you feel like you’re at your best!

Pro Tip: If you struggle with snoozing, place your phone or a basic alarm clock across the room from you so it forces you to get up and turn it off!

It’s a lot harder to crawl back into bed once you’re already up and out of it!

Make bed

Our environment has a direct impact on our state of mind.

So when your home is messy and scattered, you can expect your day to feel that way too.

Clear space, clear mind!

Pray or meditate

Life is full of blessings, big and small.

I’ve made it a habit to thank God for each new day every morning and to pray about the day ahead.

When you make the effort to feel His presence and experience the way He works through the people and things around you, you’ll never see your days the same again.

Philippians 2:13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.

Make a cup of coffee

Start your morning off right with your beverage of choice!

Purchase your favorite coffee or tea (this coffee is amazing) and savor the peace and quiet as you enjoy a slow start to the morning.

Write a daily to-do-list

I write my to-do list in a simple notebook like this one but use my agenda (I can’t recommend this one enough!) for activities and listing homeschool lesson plans.

My to-do list usually looks pretty similar every day.

That said, I tend to expand on my goals.

For instance, I like reading two books at a time and usually try to read a chapter of one or both with my coffee.

So, my to-do list includes “read chapter X of book 1”.

I’ll also break down our homeschool schedule and write each lesson number of each topic I want to cover with my oldest plus any additional activities for the day.

morning routine to do list

Read something inspiring

Speaking of reading – I have two suggestions for you!

Avoid social media and news first thing in the morning (I’d avoid mainstream news altogether, at this point though).

The last thing you want is to experience negative emotions shortly after you wake up – it sets the mood for your entire day.

Instead, choose an inspiring blog or book to start your day.

I love starting mornings with this devotional.

And like I said in the previous section, having two books on the go is a wonderful way to give yourself options.

You can choose the one you feel most drawn to and watch as you quickly make your way through more and more books more and more quickly.

I think I’ve read more books over the past year than I have in 10 years and wow, does that feel fantastic!

morning routine read


I love getting in a spin session and some weightlifting before the girls wake up – ideally, I like to aim for 45 minutes to an hour.

This bike is a fantastic and solid alternative to the more expensive Peloton we used to have.

As much as I still love Ben’s classes, I just can’t justify over $60 a month when I can get the exact same workouts for half-price on my alternative bike and iPad setup.

Drink water

This is another one of those easy tasks that you can accomplish while you do something else – i.e. while you work out.

I like this size water bottle because it holds enough water for a tough cardio workout and actually keeps it cold from start to finish!


There’s nothing like a nice warm shower after moving your body.

Soothe those muscles and get yourself squeaky clean to start the day off right!

Get dressed for the day

Even if you work at home – DO NOT, I repeat, do not put those pajamas back on!

You’ll feel so much better and prepared to take on the day ahead if you dress like you mean it.

Plus, you’ll be ready to run errands later on, and available for unexpected visitors that drop by – Europeans do this a lot, haha!

Eat a healthy breakfast

I don’t know about you but I’m the type of person who could drink bottomless cups of coffee all day long.

Making an effort to eat something healthy first thing goes a long way though and will help you feel satisfied between meals.

Personally, I found that when I skip breakfast, I have a tendency to snack more later on.

Plan your meals and choose high-quality foods!

morning routine breakfast

Pro Tip: Do your chopping and prep work in the evenings and use glass containers like these so you can quickly find what you’re looking for at mealtime.

I love using them for fresh fruit and vegetables and just scoop out what we want for me and the kids at breakfast, lunch, and dinner time.

Fruit salads filled with a variety of delicious choices like strawberries, mango, avocado, and blueberries are a nutritious and filling choice.

Brush teeth

This is such an easy but often-forgotten step for some of us.

Take care of your teeth and give them a good clean first thing in the morning.

Don’t forget to floss!

Pinnable checklist

Be sure to click here to pin the checklist below on Pinterest.

morning routine checklist

Final Thoughts: How to Create a Morning Routine

If I had to pick just two

I hope you found this guide helpful and wish you success in starting your own routine!

Tomorrow is the perfect time to start 🙂

Happy planning, friend!

text reads nikki xo in pink font

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