When you’re a mum, life can be hectic – on top of taking care of the little ones, there are expectations you need to keep your home in order, cook, and run the errands. Outdated, misogynistic, sometimes religious gender roles are slowly changing. Dads are starting to pick up the slack in some households, yet many mums are still carrying more than their fair share of the workload.
For working mums, the stress levels are often at a whole new level. You have to deal with meetings, email, phone calls, reports… When the workday is done, all you want is a hot bath and your cosy bed but unfortunately, that’s impossible. Your kids are waiting all excited to play with you and there’s a pile of laundry to be done.
Is it possible for busy mums to catch a break? Remember the good old days when you had a social life? It’s time for you to spend some time for yourself again. Below are some tips that can help you find more time in your day. Life is not a cookie-cutter. Some of these tips may work for you and others may not. Take what works for you and ignore the rest. We hope these tips help you save time and keep the demands on your life under control.
Learn to say ‘NO’
As a mum, you are probably overwhelmed with everything you need to do in a day. Do you really need to be a part of every event or volunteer for every charity? And do you absolutely have to sign up your kids for so many extracurricular activities? Violin classes, football, foreign languages… Choose to do only what makes you and your kids really happy and try to use the remaining time on yourself. Give yourself permission to say ‘no’.
No more wasting time
Are you wondering what might be a ‘time waster’? Many things! For instance, watching too much TV at night or spending hours on social media. Do you feel like you live in a brain fog? Technology is making us feel and mums are not immune. Detect what wastes your time and eliminate it. As a mum you may feel disconnected from civilization and social media fills that void for a moment but it can be a huge waste of your time. If you feel you are to social media. Try turning off your mobile data so when you are away from home and out of range from your WI-FI you’ll be disconnected. You may find these short breaks from social media helps you great the time-sapping habit.
Get up early
Don’t hate me for the counter-intuitive tip. Getting up early when you’re so tired doesn’t sound so good but it does come with many benefits. If you wake up before your kids, you’ll be able to have your morning coffee in peace or enjoy the silence and meditate. It’s a balancing act – like everything to do with motherhood. As a busy mum, getting a good night sleep is essential for your health and energy levels. Make sure you go to bed early (no TV or browsing the web) and get up 30 minutes before the kids. You’ll feel much more positive and energized, getting a head start on the day.
Take care of yourself
If you want to stay sane, make sure to find time for yourself during the week. Dedicate at least 20 minutes a week doing something healthy for you; yoga, taking a bath, or simply reading a great book – whatever makes you happy.
Get ready the night before
Preparing in advance can help you reduce the stress levels in the morning. Have your kids pack their bags, prepare their lunchboxes and clothes. You can also decide what you’re going to wear to work and get it ready. This will make morning routines much faster and easier.
Shop once a week
Doing grocery shopping with your kids often turns into a nightmare. They’re grabbing candy, crying for chocolates… it’s more than enough to drive you crazy. Who would want to do it more than once per week? Make a plan for the upcoming week’s meals, with a list of the ingredients you’ll need, and do all the grocery shopping in a single day. This will save you energy, money, and time.
Teach the kids to help
Depending on their age, your kids can all participate in the chores. For instance, ask them to collect their toys or make the beds in the morning. If they’re a bit older, they can do the dishes or the laundry. The younger the kids, the easier it is to teach them to help around the house. This way, they won’t consider chores a punishment and will learn to be independent. Yes, I know it’s hard to get kids to listen and participate to make your home as trash-proof as possible, making the chores easy on everyone concerned.
Clean ‘in batches’
No one likes cleaning but we all must do it. Make a list of cleaning tasks and start organizing them in batches. For instance, clean the floors in the whole house on Monday, the bathroom on Wednesday, and the exterior of your home on Sunday. Work out a schedule that is best for you and doesn’t get overwhelmed with all the cleaning all at once. Cleaning is maintenance work and it will never be complete, so relax knowing it’s all under control.
*This is a guest post