If a day starts badly...usually it stays that way.
So why not take a few intentional steps to start the day well, and set the tone for a good day...and beyond?
Here are some simple things you can do...starting the night before:
- Have the things you'll need early ready to go the night before. This includes lunches, packed and ready; work and school supplies, organized and waiting in the entry hall; clothing, chosen and laid out. Do this, and all you have o do is collect gear and go.
- Get the kitchen ready for breakfast. Get into the habit of clearing the sink and the countertop of dirty dishes, either putting them into the dishwasher or washing by hand and putting them away. Make sure you have what you'll need, or suitable alternatives, to avoid the frustrated cries of "But I really wanted Rice Krispies!"
- Try to ensure there's enough gas in the car to get you where you need to go in the morning.
- If you've got a conflict with your spouse in the evening, settle it. The Bible suggests that you not let the sun go down on your wrath, and certainly you shouldn't go to sleep on it. If it's not a life-or-death situation, you might just...give in. let it go. Most marriage arguments are caused by bruised egos...and can you even remember the reason for your last fight? Let it go.
- Start the morning with a hug and a kiss. Not a perfunctory shoulder-squeeze and peck, but a hug and a ten-second kiss. No, don't hold a stopwatch over your spouse's shoulder, and don't set a timer, either. Just get used to how long ten seconds really is.
- If you start the morning with a shower, shower together. Not for sexual reasons, but to have a moment of mutual physical closeness.
- Banish the morning news. You can get weather and traffic on your smartphone, or on the car radio. Have breakfast together, without inviting in the Morning Show personalities.
- No newspapers at the table. Nothing's more depressing than taking to a sheet of newsprint...wait, does anyone still actually read them?
- No texting or calling or browsing during breakfast. Would you invite a friend over for a meal, and ignore her while you're playing with your phone? No? You've invited your husband or wife into your life...don't they deserve at least that consideration?
- No conflicts of controversy before parting. Don't leave an unresolved issue hanging. There is the small but nonzero chance that when you say goodbye, it will be for good. Bad things happen, and there's no reason to risk a life of regret..."Why couldn't we have parted with a smile?" is a horrible burden to carry down the years.
None of these action items is hard to implement...and if you need to make changes, you don;t need to make them all at once. Don't make it a crusade...but do make a better start to the day a priority.
You won't regret it.
Share with us - how do you and your spouse make sure your day starts well?