wikiHow to Save Time in the Morning

Three Methods:Preparing in AdvanceGetting the Kids ReadyMoving Quicker in the Morning

According to a recent survey, the average American spends approximately five hours a week getting ready for work.[1] Since the Center for Disease Control has declared that insufficient sleep has become "a public health epidemic," this is time that would be better spent in bed.[2] Preparing for the morning can save you that sleep while getting you to work on time.

Method 1
Preparing in Advance

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    Shower at night. This will eliminate one of your most time consuming morning rituals. However, those with oily skin might look best if they shower in the morning. Cosmetically, there is also a risk that you'll wake up to untamable hair. If neither of these are concerns for you, you still want to be careful to shower at least two hours before bed. One recent study suggests that showering later than that is likely to make falling asleep more difficult.[3]
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    Pick out your clothes in advance. Watch the weather forecast to see what attire would be appropriate. If, you're really ambitious, use the weekly forecast to pick out your clothes for the whole week. Set aside your clothes somewhere, possibly a separate rack, from which you can easily grab them in the morning. Iron in advance.
    • If you're neither a morning, nor a night person, you might be able to save yourself the trouble of ironing by leaving your outfit in the bathroom. When you shower, the steam will remove many of the wrinkles.[4]
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    Set up the coffee machine. Fill it with coffee and water so that you can perk yourself up in the morning with the flick of a switch. If your coffee machine is fully automated, you can even set it to begin brewing shortly after your alarm goes off. This will save time, and, if you're having trouble pulling yourself out of bed, the smell of coffee can give you the extra push you need.[5]
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    Pack your lunch. Eating out for lunch won't require any preparation. But if you want to be frugal, save time in the morning by packing your lunch the night before. Anyway, chances are, your culinary skills are better at 8:00 pm than 6:00 am. If you have leftovers, packing some away in a small container for lunch is an easy way to prepare.
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    Have accessories packed and in a designated location. If you bring a bag to school or work, pack it the night before. If you plan to run errands, have your bag ready with shopping lists, library books, etc. If you are liable to need a coat, umbrella, hat, or other such accessory, keep it in a designated location. If possible, all of these items should be stored in the same location, preferably near the door so that you can grab them all as you leave.

Method 2
Getting the Kids Ready

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    Get your kids to bed early. They are most likely to be cooperative and conscious if they have rested the night before. A good night’s sleep for them might be much different than a good night’s sleep for you. A one year old child should get over eleven hours of sleep a night. Consider their needs and make sure they go to bed early.[6]
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    Wake up fifteen to thirty minutes before your kids. This will give you time to get showered, dressed, and composed before waking up your kids. Without your constant attention, your child might fall behind schedule or get distracted. Being ready yourself, will make it easier to be there to motivate your children.[7]
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    Allot extra time to connect with your children and/or be prepare if they have trouble. You need to save fifteen minutes in the morning in case your boy or girl has trouble waking up. Use what you can of this time to connect with your children, snuggling or holding their hands. If your children become accustomed to affection in the morning, they’ll be more cooperative.[8]
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    Prepare breakfast and clothes. As when getting yourself ready, make sure the things that your children will need are prepared in advance. Set aside their clothes some place that they can find. Have a simple breakfast prepared.
    • Have alternatives available if your child isn’t interested in what you’ve prepared for breakfast. Instant food is useful, as is something your children can take with them, like a sandwich, if they are not hungry when they wake up. [9]
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    Don’t drop your kids off at school. Obviously they need to go to school! But there are quicker ways to get them there. If they take the bus, it will save you a lot of time. Depending upon the circumstances, you might not be comfortable with that. An alternative is to create a carpool with several other local parents.

Method 3
Moving Quicker in the Morning

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    Wake up. As simple as this sounds, it often is not easy. Resist the temptation to hit the snooze button. Not only will it consume time, it will also make you sleepier.[10] The classic cup of coffee can pick you up. But it isn't the only way to make a clean break from the bed.
    • Let the light in. One study has shown that sunlight will wake you up and make you more alert than artificial light.[11] So, leave your blinds open and you'll have one more thing pulling you out of bed in the morning.
    • Play some music. Music will give you more energy if you are struggling to get up or get the energy to move. With music on, it is also easier to keep track of how much time has passed. [12]
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    Have a quick breakfast available. Because breakfast is so important to establishing your energy and metabolism throughout the day, you never want to skip it.[13] Throwing granola, yogurt, and fruit in a bowl together is a quick way to pull together a nutritious breakfast. You can also make a smoothie by placing all of the ingredients into the blender and leaving it in the refrigerator overnight. When you wake up, turn on the blender and breakfast is served.[14]
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    Brush your teeth in the shower. Keep in your brush and toothpaste in the shower. Brush as you wash yourself off. This sort of multitasking can save you a couple of important minutes in a rush.
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    Set a predetermined time to leave. It'll keep you honest and force you hurry up if you're running behind. Estimate how long it will take to shower, brush your teeth, and dress. Set a time by which you should finish each to be able to make it out of the house on the set time. If you fall behind this schedule, hurry up. [15]
    • If you have trouble remembering your schedule, write it down and tape it on your door. Consult it to verify that you are sticking to your goal.
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    Use GPS to find a route. It might be that the route your normally take to work is not as quick as you thought. Put the address of your destination into GPS or a mapping service like Google Maps to figure out if there is a quicker route. These programs can keep you up-to-date with traffic jams, adapting your route instantly to find the quickest way to your destination.
    • Keep your work or school preprogrammed into your GPS. That way you will not need to spend time imputing it in the morning.
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    Don’t stop. Make sure that you have eaten and gotten your coffee before leaving the house. If you need to stop for anything on the drive, it will slow you down and throw off the schedule you made.


  • Preparation is key!
  • Keep wallet, purses, and keys by the door in a basket or bowl.
  • Don’t stay up too late. It might make it difficult to get up in the morning.
  • Put a note on the door saying what you will need for the next day so that you don't forget.

Article Info

Categories: Routines and Habits