How many times have you found yourself feeling flustered, frustrated and stressed trying to get your kids up, dressed, eat breakfast and out the door to school?

Mornings are notorious for being some of the most hectic moments of the day in any family’s life. By implementing a few key strategies, you can have a relatively relaxed morning and get out of the house on time with happy, relaxed kids. Here’s how.

The key to a relaxed morning is organization. It really is as simple as that. The better prepared you are ahead of time, the easier your morning will flow. A little planning and preparation will make your life so easy, you will ask why you have not been doing this all along.

1. Lay out your child’s clothes the night before.

2. Pack lunch the night before and have it ready to grab in the morning.

3. Have all homework done and permission slips filled out the night before and the backpack waiting right beside the door.

4. Make sure your child has enough sleep by having the appropriate bedtime that your child really needs.

5. Get up an hour or so before your children so you can start your day, get dressed, have coffee or tea and be in a great mood. When you have the time to do what you need, you are relaxed. Children feel your relaxed attitude and they can also feel when you are hurried and stressed. Your attitude counts.

6. Get enough sleep yourself. Moms always have a lot to do. Set yourself an approximate bedtime, enjoy some relax and unwinding time and then go off to sleep. You need sleep to be in a good mood and to be productive and happy. Sleep deprivations lowers our frustration threshold, makes us irritable, hurts our concentration levels, and can even provoke headaches. So get your rest.

7. If you are a working mom and will be gone all day like your children, put dinner in the Crockpot. It’s a no stress way for a relaxed dinner time that is coming back with a vengeance. Vegetarians can enjoy Crockpot meals in abundance and you can even make cakes and breads in the Crockpot now!

8. Tidy up the house for just 15 minutes before you go to bed each night. This way, your house will seem clean and decluttered and free your mind. An untidy home makes us feel like we have yet another thing to take care of and it weighs us down. Set your timer for just 15 minutes and tidy each evening before your relax time. Make it part of your bedtime routine.

9. Check your calendar the night before so you and your children are fully aware of what they next day holds. It’s the last-minute stuff that stresses us.

10. A load a day keeps the laundry monster away. Whether you work or stay at home, doing just one load a day helps you stay organized and clean clothes are there when you need them.

11. Wake your child up with a kiss and a hug. Since you now have more time, enjoy the time you have. A kiss and some cuddles go an awfully long way to generate a happy attitude in your child in the morning.

12. Put on your child’s favorite music to start the day. A study last year published in Nature Neuroscience showed that listening to your favorite music prompts the brain to release large amounts of dopamine – the feel good chemical. Dopamine sends signals to the rest of the body which promotes motivation.

Now you have some fantastic tools to keep your mornings running smoothly and stress free.