There's nothing worse than running around the kitchen with frazzled hair and an inside-out shirt on a mad dash for your missing keys, all the while being aware you were supposed to leave a solid 15 minutes ago. Mornings are hard, but there are morning hacks to get out the door faster that can help you avoid a stressful and insane morning. Just imagine actually getting out of bed on time and eating a calm breakfast in the kitchen. Or think of how it would feel to put on an outfit you enjoy and sashaying to the door without a care. This isn't just a fictional world in some Utopian movie — this can literally be your morning every weekday.
And all it takes is a little bit of planning. OK, it takes a lot of planning, but it doesn't exert too much effort on your part. If all you have to do is pack up your bag the night prior and store your breakfast in the fridge before heading to bed, surely the extra actions would be deemed well worth it. Below are 11 tips on how to stay on schedule in the morning and leave the house on time — say goodbye to your chronic lateness.
1. Change Your Alarm Tune
Mornings aren't too fun if you have a deafening blare for an alarm. "Change your alarm to a motivating song. Nothing will get you out of bed faster than a happy song you just want to jump out of bed and dance too," Rachel Ritlop, a Millennial Career & Business Coach from The Confused Millennial, suggests in an email interview with Bustle. That'll nix the "five more minutes" problem right in the bud.
2. Don't Play Around With Your Phone
It might be tempting to check your email notifications before you roll out of bed, but that can easily spin into 30 minutes of Instagram and cat memes. "I used to have a bad habit of checking my inbox and social media accounts first thing in the morning which led to me wasting time on my phone when I should have been getting ready. I quickly realized that since my alarm was on my phone, it was too easy for me to check my notifications," Kayla Hollatz, a Community Coach for Creatives, shares in an email interview with Bustle. The solution to that? Set your alarm on an actual alarm clock.
3. Pre-Select Your Breakfast
It might seem like a small thing, but choosing your breakfast (and prepping it) the night before can save you some major time. "I can't stress this enough, the fewer choices you make in the morning, the more time you will save. Either eat the same things each morning, or write out a weekly meal plan so you know each morning what you are doing for breakfast," Ritlop advises. If you don't have to stand with your nose in the fridge for 10 minutes, you can leave faster and stick to schedule.
4. Prep Your Outfit The Night Prior
Don't miss your train because you have nothing you want to wear that morning — plan it out the night before and the problem won't exist. "Instead of trying to coordinate pieces in your wardrobe in a rush, take a few minutes before you go to sleep to pick out the perfect outfit for the next day," Hollatz suggests. That way you don't end up wearing something you feel blah about and head out the door.
5. Pack Your Essentials In The Evening
Racing around your house trying to find your keys just as you're about to leave the house is not a situation you want to be in. "Pack your purse and other things you need for the morning," Ritlop suggests. Have it ready for you waiting by the door.
6. Write Your To-Do List The Night Before
Start the new day with a bang by already knowing exactly what you have to do the second you get out the door. "To familiarize yourself with the next day, check your digital calendar or paper planner the night before and create a quick to-do list with top priority tasks listed first," Hollatz advises. You won't waste time in the morning making these preperations, and you'll be able to jump into work without a hitch.
7. Multi-Task In The Bathroom
Shave minutes off your primping time by multi-tasking. "Multi-task like a pro by brushing your teeth while you shower," Ritlop recommends. Other things you can do is turn on your hair tools as you apply makeup, check your planner as you brush out your hair, or do your morning squats as you floss. Whatever works.
8. Create Playlist Timers
Not only will using an upbeat playlist bring your mood up in the early a.m., but it'll also keep you on time. "You can use a song to time yourself in the shower, but you can also use an entire playlist to time out your entire morning," lifestyle writer Patrick Allan at Lifehack suggested. If you're only brushing your teeth and the fourth song is already playing, you'll know you're behind!
9. Set A Bathroom Products Limit
While it's fun to reach for the contour brush every now and then, if you set a limit on products that you can use during the morning your beauty routine will be done in a finger snap. For example, agree to only use seven products for your face, and then set them out on the bathroom counter so you can grab them in a hurry. "Set the products and tools you plan to use out the night before so you know exactly what you’re doing when you wake up groggy," Allan confirmed. The process will go much more seamlessly.
10. Don't Reach For The Remote
It might seem like turning on some morning TV will help you unwind a little before a busy day of work, but it'll be the death of your morning. "The last thing you need is to get sucked into one of Jill's "Steals and Deals" segments on the TODAY show while you are trying to get out of the house," Ritlop pointed out. Just avoid it.
11. Schedule A Meeting First Thing
Whether it's chatting with a client or meeting your friend at the bakery for a croissant, knowing someone is waiting for you will help you leave the door on time. "Schedule something with somebody in the morning. Having “peer accountability” is one of the most effective motivators," lifestyle writer Michael B. Fishbein at the Huffington Post offered. And bonus points: You now get a pastry!
Mornings can be hard, but you can still fly out the door with little effort if you keep these tips in mind.
Images: Allison Gore/Bustle