What are evenings like in your home? Are your evenings the moments of the day you look forward to when your day is finally quiet and calm or do your evenings seem to go on and on till you finally collapse in bed exhausted from another long day? If your evenings are wearing on you, here are some ideas to make an evening routine that works for you.
Daily routines make your day run smoothly and keep everything on track. When you don’t have the right daily routines, it’s easy to just go through your day feeling like you are a firewoman dealing with each crazy situation as they happen and never knowing what to expect next. When your day has no structure or systems, you will constantly feel unbalanced and stressed. That’s why daily routines are so important.
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My evening routine is one of my favorite times of the day. I would love to say that I can set aside 2-3 hours each evening to relax, sip hot tea and binge watch Netflix or read my favorite books. But that’s not usually how it works.
Evenings: My Daily Routine
My daily routine probably looks similar to your evening routine:
6:00-7:00 – Preparing dinner/eat dinner/clean-up
After dinner – Before we homeschooled, I would do prep for the next day right after dinner which included making school lunches, signing papers, prepping for the next morning (i.e. selecting outfits, washing if needed, packing diaper bags/school bags).
7:00 – 9:00 – Finish any school work that was done during the day/correct school work/home cleaning and pick-up. When the kids attended a school, we did homework during this time, and when we finished we would pack-up get school bags ready for the next morning.
8:30 – Kids get showers and ready for bed/time to start quieting down for sleep
8:30 – 10:00 – Here’s my favorite part. Today’s work is finally done. I wash my face, moisturize. I usually take a hot shower or bath. I love to relax by reading books, watching TV. I might also plan priorities for the next day during this time.
Since my kids are teens now, they like to stay up later (no 8:00 pm bedtimes anymore). I’m also doing some blog work in the evenings so I can sleep in (till 6:30 am or 7:00 am in the mornings).
Does this happen exactly as planned every evening? Of course not! But when I follow the routine, I am able to get more done and enjoy my evening.
The Best Evening Routine
The first step to having a great evening routine is to outline all the tasks you must to complete each evening like:
- Make dinner/eat/clean-up
- Finish homework/schoolwork
- Prep for the next day
- Quiet time/relaxation
- Kids activities (like sports, ballet, school clubs)
- Personal activities (hobbies, weekly Bible study, ladies group)
- Quick nightly pick-up/Cleaning
After you make your list of everything you need to complete each evening, define how much time each task will take you to complete so you can time block the evening.
Next, set priorities for tomorrow. Plan your day for tomorrow so you know exactly what needs to be done when you get up tomorrow. On the mornings when I start with a clear focus, I get so much more done than if I wait until the morning to start planning my day.
The Smart Focus Daily Productivity Planner is perfect to help you define your priorities each night. Just complete one page in the planner and you will have your daily one focus for tomorrow.
Last, allow yourself a little quiet time. A home with kids can make it hard to have quiet time but declare a nightly quiet time. It can be 30 minutes or an hour. During this time, everyone only uses soft voices. It’s perfect for personal reading time, journaling or a hot bath.
I like to write in my journal or update my year over year journal (just one quick thought, memory, Bible verse or something I’m thankful for).
Having a set time each evening to wind down helps me fall asleep faster. It allows me to feel like for just a few minutes I did something I truly enjoyed.
A set bedtime is also so important. Moms work hard and we need rest. So, don’t stay up extra late just because you want to watch TV or chill out. The best rest is a good night’s sleep.
When you are well rested, you can handle the day better. You will be less irritable and have better focus.
Even when you have a long to-do list each evening, you can still have a calming evening routine. The routine itself gives you structure and stability and takes away the chaos. And setting aside some time for quiet and relaxation will help you end your day well and be ready for tomorrow.
Make Over Your Evenings
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For a more in-depth look at evening routines, Make Over Your Evenings is a 14-day course that will help you maximize your evenings.
In Make Over Your Evenings, Crystal Paine teaches us how to use our evenings hours to prepare for tomorrow, set priorities and get the much-needed rest all moms need. This course helped me improve my evening routine and make my evenings a time to relax.
In this course you will discover:
- The importance of setting your priorities for the day the night before
- Preparing for tomorrow the evening before
- How to make sleep a priority so you are rested and ready for your day
- Admit your own character flaws and learn out to overcome them
- Create your own prioritized to-do list
- Being realistic with your evening routine
- Having a backup plan B & C
- And so much more…
How would you change your evenings with Make Over Your Evenings? Imagine better days, less stress and time to relax with right evening routine. Every successful day starts with planning and preparing the evening before.
What’s your evening routine?
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Marie-France Lamothe says
Great post! I always enjoy reading what others are doing! For me, my evening routine begins around 3:30PM when I’m done work and my 7 YO son gets off the bus around 4:00PM. A couple of nights a week, he has jiu jitsu classes, so we need to be out the door by 4:30PM, which means having supper around 4:00PM. It seems rushed, but there’s no way he would make it without having supper first! Haha! And thankfully, I work from home, so that makes it easier. We don’t get home until 6:30PM, and our usual evening routine with him starts at 7:00PM. He has a snack while we read for about 30-40 minutes. Then he says his goodnights to everyone, brushes his teeth and all that and then it’s time to get into bed. I’ll sing to him and we’ll chat and he’s asleep around 8:00PM. Then I will usually finish tidying up and either do some planning for the next day, work on my business or watch TV with my hubby. I’m usually in bed by 9:30PM and might read for a bit. But since I get up at 5:00AM, I’m usually pretty much ready to sleep!
That’s a great schedule. I like to read in the evening, too. It’s a great way to relax before bed.