inspired {morning maximization}

another update on my inspired to action progress. today, i'm talking about her concept of maximizing your mornings (the basis of her e-book, which is free, so go download it).

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i was already partially doing what she suggests...which is basically to get up early enough to have a daily "retreat" before your family is up. the days i go into the office, i get up at 5:00 so that i can have 30 minutes of "me time". i try very hard not to allow myself to do chores, etc. typically i'd spend this time reading the Bible and journaling based on devotionals. on the mornings when i work from home, i tended to sleep later, waiting for coleman to wake me, but now i'm changing that.

so, the big difference between what i was doing and what she recommends is how i was spending that time. she suggests dividing your 'extra' time between prayer, exercise and planning. and now that's what i'm doing. i spend 10 minutes doing a few exercises in my den, i read the bible for 10 minutes and then i plan/journal for the last 10 minutes. go here to read more about creating a morning routine. i know it sounds a little silly that i exercise for 10 minutes, but keep in mind that is 10 minutes MORE than i used to do!

i also totally stole her idea of using daily cards for planning. this is a totally new concept for me, but i liked it so i'm going to try it for a few weeks and see how it goes. instead of printing hers (which are in the e-book), i created my own so they could be personalized a tiny bit. i can print 8 on a legal sheet of paper - enough for one week plus an extra.

so, during my 10 minutes of planning, i jot down the date and circle the day of the week. i look at my calendar and write down any "planned" events (meetings, games, appoinments, etc). i fill in the three "to do" spots after looking at my master to-do list and choosing 3 things to tackle. these are not everyday chores like laundry and grocery shopping (i jot those down on the back, if i feel i need to list them). i note what topic i'm going to blog about, what topics i will focus on during prayer, and what i plan to make for supper. ta da!!!
at the bottom are 9 important items that i should do each day. at least three of them should be checked off by the end of my morning routine (bible, prayer, exercise). "water" means drinking 8 glasses (64 ounces). blog is checked when i do a post. journal is checked when i do any type of writing outside of my blog. cleaning is complete when i've done something to tidy up the house (pick up, empty dishwasher, laundry, etc). photo is checked after i've taken at least one photo. edit is complete if i spend 10-15 minutes working on my photo process. i love the idea of this concise planning tool!!!

inspired to action also offers a free prayer calendar download designed for mothers. highly recommend this as well (it's in the e-book).

in addition to the things above, this process inspired me to create two useful lists that i now keep in my notebook.

(1) list of supper ideas. we are often "in a rut" at our house when it comes to meals because there truly aren't that many things that all of us like. so, this is a list of any meal ideas for the family. i also have a list in our kitchen of meals which we actually have in the house at that moment. i've done this for a long time now and it makes meal time SO much easier.

(2) weekly prayer calendar. this lists each of the five weekdays (not weekends), and assigns specific prayer topics to each day. a typical day might include one immediate family member, an extended family, a family we are friends with, something we are involved in, and something "bigger". for example: tuesday is spencer + michelle & her family + the herron family + my job + the economy. obviously my prayers aren't limited to these things, but it's more of a starting point. i have considered doing this for a while now, inspired by this post.



  1. I LOVE this card! It is so type A and I LOVE that!

  2. Thanks for joining us in our journey, Holly! Seems like you already have a great start, and I hope you can lend inspiration to the group when we need it!

    m :)

  3. I love your card. I think I will borrow the idea if you do not mind. I caught on this challenge late but I am certainly joining in. Thanks for sharing

  4. joelle - i certainly don't mind :) if you'd like, i can email you the document. it's in word so you could edit it for personalization, if you wanted.
    just shoot me an email at