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2 Ways to Build a Rhythm of Routine

rhythm of routine

As moms, we want to make the most of our days. We want to feel successful as we manage our homes, homeschool our children, shuttle kids here and there, prepare healthy meals, stay involved in our community, and keep relationships healthy. Although the job of being a mom can seem a bit overwhelming, instituting a daily rhythm of routine makes all the difference.

A good place to start is with listing all of the non-negotiable priorities in your life, then using that as a springboard for establishing a rhythm of routine that works for you and your family, keeping you all well-balanced and healthy.

Using a simple piece of paper, you can easily get your schedule going by breaking your day down into segments. Write Monday–Friday on the top of the page with 6am through 6pm on the left hand side, using one line for each thirty minute increment.

Or, if you aren’t a “by the clock” person, you can create time blocks, such as morning, afternoon, and evening. (Hint: This is actually what I recommend over a clock-based schedule, since it lends itself more toward a good rhythm of routine.) Start by creating space for weekly planning, planning and shopping for meals, cooking and feeding the kids, laundry, household cleaning, work, the kids’ education, and other non-negotiables. Then add any additional top priorities.

With a view of the entire week, you can begin implementing a weekly rhythm. Try out your new schedule for a week and then make adjustments. The goal is to find a rhythm of routine that works for your family. As each family is distinctly different from each other, here are a few tips to finding your rhythm.

Finding a Weekly Rhythm of Routine

Sometimes, predictability offers the greatest comfort. But that doesn’t have to mean a rigid adherence to a day-in and day-out schedule. Instead of creating a schedule that looks the same every weekday, look for your family’s weekly rhythm of routine.

  • Do you need to start strong? Then protect Mondays as a day to buckle down and attack the week.
  • Does the midweek hump reduce focus to nothingness? Regularly make games, field trips, or hands-on learning activities a part of the Wednesday or Thursday plan.
  • Do you find that at least one day every week tends to be “interrupted” by the need for errands, appointments, or interaction with friends? Turn the interruption into routine by planning for it! Pick a “running about” day for each week, and, as often as possible, try to schedule on-the-go activities for that day of the week.

Refreshing Your Rhythm of Routine

Is the routine getting a bit, well, routine? Focus more on paying attention to your family’s signals than on sticking to the daily plan. Perhaps today is the day to take school on the road, enjoying picnic blankets in the park instead of seats at the dining room table. Or maybe that history lesson will be better learned through a field trip or living book than through the normal lesson plan. Don’t be afraid to break the mold by shaking things up a bit!

It’s also helpful to keep your rhythm of routine light and flexible by incorporating a little play into your day. Use games instead of math drills. Turn housework into a lighthearted contest. Let some dance fun lighten up PE. Play not only makes the mundane more fun, it also solidifies learning!

Do you prefer to plan by the clock or in blocks? Take our Planner Personality Quiz to discover your planner personality type and find other tips for building a solid rhythm of routine.

With five kids in their teen and early adult years, Rebecca shares the many ups and downs of parenting, homeschooling, and keeping it all together. As the Well Planned Gal she mentors women towards the goal of discovering the uniqueness Christ has created in them and their family and how to best organize and plan for the journey they will travel.

  • Jennifer Jackson

    I struggle with following the plan once created. I’m great at creating my schedule and then not looking at it again, I’d love to get better at this and reduce some of the wasted time in our busy days

    May 9, 2022 at 8:46 pm Reply
    • Tiffini Gonzalez

      Oh my gosh. I’m so glad I am not the only one. I also am great with planning the day or month then the planner gets set aside and I forget to even glance at it.

      May 26, 2022 at 1:13 am Reply
      • Jenn Nigh

        Y’all are not alone! I make beautiful routines and plans constantly and then oops!!! ‍♀️ I have to get better at this!

        May 26, 2022 at 12:08 pm Reply
      • Angela Hughes

        Schedules are challenging, but routines are essential.

        May 29, 2022 at 6:04 pm Reply
    • Lynesa Bell

      This is me to a “T”. I am so excited to organize and schedule, but lack the motivation to follow through with my own plans.

      May 26, 2022 at 4:22 pm Reply
      • Shelby Tench

        Agreed!! I always feel like I’m so prepared, and then fall apart!

        May 31, 2022 at 2:12 pm Reply
    • Britni Stewart

      This is me too !

      May 27, 2022 at 10:11 pm Reply
    • Kirsten Edwards

      I too can create an amazing plan but then inadvertently derail my own plan.

      May 29, 2022 at 1:14 pm Reply
  • Paula P

    Some good reminders even for seasons homeschoolers.

    May 9, 2022 at 11:05 pm Reply
    • Mari-Lyn Mickles

      Love all of the resources you have to offer.

      May 14, 2022 at 2:52 pm Reply
    • Valdaree Van Doren

      I agree.

      May 29, 2022 at 1:29 pm Reply
  • Sara Owens

    Rhythm is so important for our kids to feel comfortable enough to explore throughout their days and yet have a solid base of expectations to return to!

    May 10, 2022 at 12:56 am Reply
  • Mariana Tsytovych

    Being a homeschool mom of 3 kids, full time employee, and full time student myself, having a routine/schedule is crucial for me in order to get things done. However, what I learned in a hard way, is that sometimes it’s okay to ‘fail’ – it’s okay if the house is not spotless, it’s okay to have mac-n-cheese for dinner, it’s okay if you are late for work (not too often, though :)). The most important thing is to pick family’s emotional needs over a deadline. It’s okay to not clean the house, but cuddle on the couch with the kids. And while I still look for ways to better improve my schedule/routine, don’t forget to be realistic of what can be accomplished. And the most important, don’t forget to leave time for emotional recharge!

    May 10, 2022 at 12:57 am Reply
  • Latasha Weaver

    I loved reading this, I need to get more organized myself.

    May 10, 2022 at 8:35 am Reply
  • Emily Casey

    Routines are so great for establishing a peaceful homeschooling environment.

    May 10, 2022 at 11:14 am Reply
  • Jennifer

    I am so thankful that there are such talented moms out there who are willing to spend their time helping others. This can be a tricky world to navigate properly, and your presence in mine makes me feel less alone. This blog post is just what I needed today. Thanks!

    May 11, 2022 at 1:49 am Reply
  • Melissa wood

    I’m hoping to get more organized this year which helps me keep my stress levels down. Good information

    May 11, 2022 at 7:19 am Reply
  • Amber Kisner

    Can’t wait to use on of your gorgeous planners! My life needs organized!

    May 11, 2022 at 12:09 pm Reply
  • Goldi

    I long for a rhythm to my day(s). I am a night owl so going to bed early would help me be more successful in creating and sticking to a home flow rhythm.

    May 11, 2022 at 1:37 pm Reply
  • Ashley wanschek

    I love this post, and it’s some great advice for me right now! We had a great routine going & then had a new baby in the house so it made things way harder. The flexibility of a daily schedule is one of my favorite things about homeschooling!

    May 11, 2022 at 1:55 pm Reply
  • Caroline Seliquini

    Excited to find your blog and for your giveaway ❤️

    May 11, 2022 at 2:14 pm Reply
  • Danielle Pinkerton

    This is definitely an area I need help in! We own a business, work from home, pastor a church, and homeschool 4 kiddos. The biggest area I struggle in is sticking to a plan! I can schedule everything out (usually in blocks), but then my husband comes up with other “plans” that throw the whole schedule out the window lol!

    May 11, 2022 at 5:24 pm Reply
  • Marcy Thomas

    Routine is crucial, but flexibility to adapt is also so important. Thank you for the reminder!

    May 11, 2022 at 10:16 pm Reply
  • Courtney Ford

    We are so spontaneous with our days that I struggle to stay on talk with our schooling specially with my preschooler. The quiz was really helpful and encouraging. The aspiring Planner is what I was and reading that my ability to adapt to the ever changing situation with a 3 year old can be a positive thing.

    May 12, 2022 at 7:22 am Reply
  • Jess kuhbander

    Planning for meal time has been a struggle for me this year.

    May 12, 2022 at 11:05 am Reply
    • Debbie Duty

      New to homeschooling. Excited to see what awaits us.

      May 23, 2022 at 9:31 am Reply
  • Rebecca Mansfield

    I feel like I’m never going to be able to get back into a routine.

    May 12, 2022 at 11:25 am Reply
  • Stephanie McClain

    I am so excited to use all these tips and products from now on! I am always looking for ways to improve our schooling. I am so glad I found this!

    May 12, 2022 at 1:45 pm Reply
  • Leslie Kerr

    Routine is key for us! Great tips

    May 12, 2022 at 3:20 pm Reply
  • Elyse Manion

    Routine is great

    May 12, 2022 at 4:24 pm Reply
  • Christine Torres

    I really need this. Thanks for sharing.

    May 12, 2022 at 6:57 pm Reply
  • Christine Torres

    This is really helpful. I need this. Thanks.

    May 12, 2022 at 6:58 pm Reply
    • Lindsay H

      Very helpful. These are all practical and not hard to do either. Thanks.

      May 25, 2022 at 8:40 pm Reply
  • Brandi Smith

    We don’t stick to a routine to much anymore. Each year we get closer and closer to fully unschooling.

    May 12, 2022 at 9:42 pm Reply
  • Shannon Neparko

    This year has been hard for us – between illness and unexpected loss, even routines are overwhelming. I’m learning grace in this season.

    May 12, 2022 at 9:44 pm Reply
  • Courtney Hays

    I have been struggling with routine, I appreciate the tips on how to stay on track. I am working on being intentional with routine as my kids seem to thrive on it.

    May 12, 2022 at 9:57 pm Reply
  • Tiara Cadena

    I am excited for this year!

    May 13, 2022 at 12:30 am Reply
    • Rachel Townsend

      Looking forward to being able to use all the information and tools Well Planned has to offer!

      May 20, 2022 at 10:14 pm Reply
  • Jeniffer Andrews

    This is great information. I have printed it off so I can start incorporating the ideas into my weekly planning while getting it in my mind to use these tips. Thank you

    May 13, 2022 at 8:41 am Reply
  • yollanda Morales

    Am so excited for this year’s School adventure last year was my first year of truly homeschooling my boys we were having such a struggle because I could not figure out what they knew and what they didn’t know since pulling them out of school. This year I finally got to know what they were lacking so I’m excited for this year it is going to be a lot better and I would love to be more organized. I can’t wait to check out this website and see what stuff they have for organizing and homeschooling tips.

    May 13, 2022 at 9:48 pm Reply
  • Stephanie Hodges

    Rhythms and routines have always proven to be so valuable for us. It seems like every time we hit a good stride a baby is born or we have a significant life moment happen!

    May 14, 2022 at 12:28 am Reply
  • Amanda Cox

    I usually end up planning in blocks or flying by the seat of our pants which gets us behind a lot. I want to try to ore organize this summer for next year

    May 14, 2022 at 3:23 pm Reply
  • Brittany Smith

    This is interesting, I myself need to get more organized.

    May 14, 2022 at 3:30 pm Reply
  • Stephanie Martinez

    Awesome! Thanks!

    May 14, 2022 at 4:07 pm Reply
  • Kathryn Manzella

    Thank you for this info.

    May 14, 2022 at 4:09 pm Reply
  • Angela H.

    Since I’m just getting started to homeschool this was a great article to read! I look forward to getting the day to day planner to use.

    May 14, 2022 at 9:43 pm Reply
  • Laurie Kiela

    This is great information and things to think about when we are trying to get into a routine. As a former public school teacher, it is hard for me to break out of the traditional school schedule model. This was my first year homeschooling and we have been trying new schedules and routines to meet our needs. Thank you for the info, I look forward to trying out this planner this year too!

    May 15, 2022 at 12:45 pm Reply
  • Jessica Villmer

    It’s always nice to hear tips from an experienced mama. I have six kiddos ten and under and always struggling to get a good routine down!!

    May 15, 2022 at 1:23 pm Reply
  • Caroline Speas

    Finding a daily rhythm is so important for my sanity, and gives our family a much more peaceful, purposeful dynamic.

    May 15, 2022 at 3:15 pm Reply
  • Elizabeth Smith

    Trying to get a head start on next year… I need more organization tools and ideas in my life!

    May 15, 2022 at 10:22 pm Reply
  • Amber Reites

    Time blocking is what I need to try! I have tried “by the clock” and it only makes me feel like a failure when life happens and the plan fell apart.

    May 15, 2022 at 10:25 pm Reply
  • Jamie Dullinger

    Can’t wait to dive into your products.

    May 16, 2022 at 11:41 am Reply
  • Jasmine Arseneau

    Love this!! Great advice. I’ve used both forms of time regulating over the last several years of homeschooling as our needs changed with our growing kids.
    Currently we are much more generally structured: morning, afternoon and evening, but there is definitely a part of my brain that is still thinking 30 minute time blocks!
    I would definitely prefer it for the younger grades, while the more independent they get seems to be more conducive with a broader schedule.
    Great observations! Thank you for sharing!

    May 16, 2022 at 2:58 pm Reply
  • Mandy Radtke

    Love having a good solid rhythm to always come back to in hectic seasons

    May 16, 2022 at 6:34 pm Reply
  • Andrea Hodgins

    I’m such a fan of making lists and organizing things with detail; so excited I came across your products!

    May 16, 2022 at 10:16 pm Reply
  • Micaeh Tice

    Having a routine is the best thing for myself and the kids! I’ve always been good at them for myself, so I’m grateful we were able to find something that works for the kids and their schooling. It definitely helps to change it slightly or freshen it up a bit sometimes!

    May 17, 2022 at 6:41 am Reply
  • Lauren Walters

    I needed this!! We are struggling with homeschooling!

    May 17, 2022 at 6:42 am Reply
  • Karyn weidenaar

    These are all really great ideas!

    May 17, 2022 at 6:48 am Reply
  • Callamina Marie Synth

    Totally needed to read this, it’s been tough since the fire and losing everything including all of our homeschool stuff. This helped reground me.

    May 17, 2022 at 12:57 pm Reply
  • Jennifer

    Really good tips! We try to schedule all of our appointments, errands and interruptions for one day of the week. It has really helped us.

    May 17, 2022 at 1:01 pm Reply
  • Emely Karnes

    We start out strong- staying on task but we fall of the train after a few weeks. My girls and I struggle with sticking to the plans throughout the day and ensuring that the task is complete so we wind up falling behind and becoming frustrated. So, looking for something that will help us.

    May 17, 2022 at 4:04 pm Reply
  • Kaylee Robinson

    Looking forward to learning new things with homeschooling and what great information you’ve given. Such a great role model !

    May 18, 2022 at 3:10 pm Reply
  • Kasey bridges

    Excited to learn more about homeschooling!

    May 18, 2022 at 7:34 pm Reply
  • Robin Wilson

    It’s hard for me to change the rhythm or even if we need a break, like an unplanned break, to get back into the rhythm!

    May 18, 2022 at 9:45 pm Reply
  • Shannon

    Just diving into the journey of homeschooling. As an adhd family I am looking for any tools that will help with structure, schedule and curriculum planning.

    May 18, 2022 at 10:27 pm Reply
  • Elizabeth Champagne

    I love the idea of rhythms versus rigid schedules. No two days ever go the same way, so having that flexibility is key for our family!

    May 18, 2022 at 10:45 pm Reply
  • Nicole Maltby

    I really enjoyed reading this, lots of great advice.

    May 19, 2022 at 9:02 am Reply
  • Sarah Engle

    The refreshing the rhythm is such a good idea!

    May 19, 2022 at 2:50 pm Reply
  • Katelyn Puls

    I’m looking forward to learning organizational strategies as I am just getting started with homeschooling

    May 19, 2022 at 9:58 pm Reply
  • Tyria Jones

    I find that I can’t get my rhythm and end up all over the place with no routine. That’s the hardest part of homeschooling for me.

    May 19, 2022 at 10:03 pm Reply
  • Kelly Campbell

    I find that each year I need a few weeks to get my bearings and a good system in

    May 20, 2022 at 5:21 pm Reply
  • Lindsey Pierce

    Excited for the blog and tips for our homeschool journey!

    May 20, 2022 at 6:36 pm Reply
  • Danielle Slager

    Great tips- I struggle with this!

    May 21, 2022 at 12:41 am Reply
  • Sarah Soroka

    Love this blogs, as I am new to homeschooling all of these are so helpful and I can’t wait to get started!

    May 21, 2022 at 8:02 am Reply
  • Angela Atwood

    New to this so I am all over the place

    May 21, 2022 at 9:47 am Reply
  • Chelsea Jones

    I love all of these tips ! Where have y’all been all of my homeschooling life ?!

    May 21, 2022 at 2:32 pm Reply
  • Ashley McCauley

    I can’t believe I just found you, I’ve needed to read this all year. I can’t wait to dive into more posts!

    May 22, 2022 at 7:13 am Reply
  • Brittany Culpepper

    Finding a routine and scheduling it out wasn’t hard, but sticking to it may prove to be a different story. This site seems to be proving helpful.

    May 23, 2022 at 12:11 am Reply
  • Felicia Bergan

    I loved the suggestion of morning, afternoon, evening. I often do time schedules but then I feel defeated when I’m off track by even 30 mins.

    May 23, 2022 at 9:29 am Reply
  • Janelle Beckwith

    Very helpful!

    May 23, 2022 at 12:43 pm Reply
  • Alicia D.

    I love this thoughtful, helpful approach to creating some consistency and routine for the week. I am adding a kindergartener who thrives from routine so I am definitely going to try had to implement this as we get going!

    May 23, 2022 at 9:06 pm Reply
  • Shauna Coulson

    I am always will intentioned on this subject. I have purchased so many planners that only got partially used. I definition need more ideas on ways to make it work. It definitely helps when I do it and stick to it.

    May 23, 2022 at 10:37 pm Reply
  • Brittany Holt

    I enjoyed reading this. Having a rhythm/routine has really helped me and my kiddos.

    May 24, 2022 at 6:17 am Reply
  • LaJonna Davis

    Some weeks we do really well with staying on schedule & others not so much. Our flow changes based on my husband’s schedule. Great reminders for seasoned homeschoolers.

    May 24, 2022 at 10:47 am Reply
  • Jessica hepper

    Routine that’s what we struggle with. Well sticking to it more like it. I came across this site after we ended for the year. So here is to the 2022-2023 year

    May 24, 2022 at 2:46 pm Reply
  • Mikki Sliger

    Your planners are beautiful . I have to plan our days very loosely or else I get overwhelmed. I truly do enjoy your products though.

    May 24, 2022 at 2:59 pm Reply
  • Kiesha

    I love the Hump day idea! I have adhd so planning is not my strong suit. Live your ideas.

    May 24, 2022 at 6:45 pm Reply
  • Christina Rivera

    The pressure of sticking to a timed schedule has been very discouraging and frustrating. I really like the idea of schedule blocks.

    May 24, 2022 at 8:46 pm Reply
  • BecaSweet

    Need to find my rhythm again. Starting g the next school session in august.

    May 25, 2022 at 11:03 am Reply
  • Amber H

    I am a planner at heart, so the hardest thing for me is when “life” gets in the way of what I had planned. I was a formal classroom teacher before I had my kiddo, so it had been an easy transition for me. But it’s definitely not the same with my own (single) kid and scheduling, planning vs. life. Lol.

    May 25, 2022 at 11:19 am Reply
  • Tina Crum

    Thank you for providing so many resources for homeschooling families!

    May 25, 2022 at 1:37 pm Reply
  • Rachel Catchings

    My kids and I have daily schedules we mostly stick to, but we all understand that there will be days we do things differently and make accommodations.

    May 25, 2022 at 2:06 pm Reply
  • Ruth C

    This is very helpful. I want to creat a better schedule for next year; then I just have to follow it.

    May 25, 2022 at 2:38 pm Reply
  • Pamela Welbourne

    Love your planner! I am going to have two boys I am homeschooling this year!

    May 25, 2022 at 10:12 pm Reply
  • Kaitlin Avila

    I like to schedule by the clock but I will try to start block scheduling so it takes off some of the pressure of doing it “perfectly”. Great advise!

    May 26, 2022 at 12:56 am Reply
  • Katherine Hunnicutt

    I love that you focus more on finding a rhythm, instead of feeling like you have to stick to a hard and fast schedule.

    May 26, 2022 at 12:56 pm Reply
  • Sarah

    I planned the whole year by quarters changing things up weekly but with this being my first year and adding a new baby everything went out the window. I used Charlotte Mason ideas and ambelside for inspiration to unschool my oldest but without an open and shut curriculum I struggled

    May 26, 2022 at 4:49 pm Reply
  • Kari Rhew

    I love rhythm and routine vs. hard core schedule. That fits so much better with our life.

    May 26, 2022 at 7:56 pm Reply
  • Priscilla Baize

    Newbie here! I’m scared to death but even more so to send them to school anymore so I’m going to give it a shot.

    May 26, 2022 at 9:29 pm Reply
  • Holly Buckland

    1st year of homeschooling for me this year, I never felt like we ever got into a good routine! Looking forward to doing better and trying some block scheduling as you suggested for next year.

    May 26, 2022 at 10:30 pm Reply
  • Grace Pat

    Such great advice!

    May 27, 2022 at 12:04 am Reply

    Good reminders. I’m thinking of how do change our routine for next year.

    May 28, 2022 at 9:30 am Reply
  • JackiLyn Chaplain

    This will be our first year. We’ve gone more the way of creating a routine as opposed to an actual timed schedule. And I think we’ll manage well enough because 2 of the 4 days a week we’ll be homeschooling, my spouse will also be home to lend a hand.

    May 28, 2022 at 10:12 am Reply
  • Anna reed

    I really struggle when we have surprise admissions to the hospital especially if what we need isn’t digital

    May 28, 2022 at 5:19 pm Reply
  • Christi T

    I really love planning my schedule – but find it so hard to stick with. But then when I can’t follow the schedule, my day feel like such a mess! I think this is one of my biggest struggles with homeschooling. I thrive on planning and scheduling, but being able to be flexible is a joy of homeschooling … I just need to find that balance.

    May 28, 2022 at 10:30 pm Reply
  • Victoria King

    This is great advice. We had a really hard time getting a good rhythm this year. I’m hoping next year will be better.

    May 28, 2022 at 10:44 pm Reply
  • Jennifer Pennington

    These all look so cool! Just finding out about these products. Can’t wait to see all that’s offered.

    May 28, 2022 at 11:00 pm Reply
  • Jeania Johnson

    Great resources!

    May 29, 2022 at 7:03 am Reply
  • Heather Picker

    Such useful advice and grace. Been homeschooling forever and down to the last year for my youngest. Really want to finish strong for him. This blog gives me some renewed inspiration to keep this ship on track!

    May 29, 2022 at 9:40 am Reply
  • Cynthia Hilton

    I’m so glad I came across this site – I wish I had discovered her wonderful products when I first started out homeschooling.

    May 29, 2022 at 10:14 am Reply
  • Jackie Gessner

    Everyone needs advice like this!

    May 29, 2022 at 7:53 pm Reply
  • Angela Lunceford

    One thing I recently heard Sarah Mackenzie talk about was planning out your year like you do your budget. It may be nice to go to Hawaii for. Christmas, buy a boat and put in a pool but you only have so much money. Start with what you have and plan from there. There are soooo many good homeschooling resources and wonderful things to teach your kids but we only have so much time. Start with the time you have and schedule in what is most important in your homeschool. This is going to look different for every family and may even be different season to season in the same family. She also talks about creating a Rule of 6 in your homeschool to really focus in on what matters to you just.

    May 29, 2022 at 11:14 pm Reply
  • DavetteB

    Time blocks are easier for us to work with.

    May 30, 2022 at 6:18 am Reply
  • Shayli

    Definitely saving this to come back to.

    May 30, 2022 at 9:51 am Reply
  • Lanie Crawford

    I need SO much help sticking to a routine of any kind!

    May 30, 2022 at 6:02 pm Reply
  • Kayla Will

    Love this. Personally I need to relax more…I’m pretty hard on myself when plans derail…have to learn to embrace the spontaneous 🙂

    May 31, 2022 at 6:16 pm Reply
  • Brandi Lawton

    I’ve honestly been mostly winging it these last two years but my sons curriculum allows for it to a degree. Definitely want to create more of a lesson plan for this upcoming school year, especially having 3 to school instead of 1 and a half.

    May 31, 2022 at 7:10 pm Reply
  • Alexandria Bass

    I have never come across a better planner or planning system than Well Planned Gal. I actually *look forward* to my weekly planning! My family is so grateful for Well Planned Gal, seriously!

    May 31, 2022 at 8:35 pm Reply
  • Karla Freeman

    I really tried to stick to the hour by hour but honestly this made me realize that time block Can and will work better for me and mine!

    May 31, 2022 at 10:52 pm Reply

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