Guest post by Jenny Reyes
Being a Mom is overwhelming, not to mention all the other roles that we play: wives, daughters, sisters, working moms, bosses, entrepreneurs, confidants, friends, bloggers and so much more.
All these roles are important to us, yes, but they also keep us frantically preoccupied. As such we moms are the busiest and most tired bunch on earth.
If there is one thing I have learned in the four years of being a mom here in Chapel Hill, it’s to simplify.
Here are some of the tips & tricks that can help you maintain sanity:
1. Prioritize and Focus
Remember the days BC (BC = Before Children)? You could do anything, be anywhere and sleep anytime. That’s not so much the case anymore AD (AD = After Descendants).
Therefore it is important to prioritize time and energy, and focus on the urgent and important things that need to be done daily. As my father-in-law loves to say, “You’re no spring chicken!” Let everything else that’s not as important or urgent fall into the background.
The other side to this is making your priorities clear to those around you so they recognize a) where they stand in terms of your priorities, and b) can support you in your efforts.
2. Limit the Choices
Don’t try to fill your days and hours with activities, be it for you or for your kids. It could potentially drive you crazy.
Space your days out such that you are only committing to one thing for a blocked time period. Moving around with kids will definitely slow you down. Not to mention, there is a high probability that anyone below 5 will throw a wrench into your jam-packed day and rescheduling may be frustrating.
Here’s what I do: Monday is when we go to Target, Tuesday is when we have a playgroup, and Wednesday is music class. There is no way that all three activities will happen all in one day.
3. Make a List, Check it Twice
Following the first two items, put down necessary to do’s on a calendar or in a list. Tick off items as they get done. The list helps you remember and focus on the important things first.
4. Build a Routine and Stick to It
Predictability and consistency is every Mom’s best friend. When toddlers can predict what will happen next, there are less meltdowns, tantrums, interruptions and less stress for mom.
5. Allocate Specific Days for Specific Tasks
If you don’t cook everyday (Like me!), make three or four different meals on the days that you do, so that you have viand variety until your next “cooking day.”
With laundry, consider investing in enough beddings, towels and clothes that will take you through 2 washings a week instead of every other day.
6. Invest in Helpful Tools and Gadgets
Washing machines and dustbusters were invented for a reason. Kidswitches allow independent children to use the bathroom by themselves.
Sometimes having less people help out and more gadgets to get the job done makes stress-levels more manageable.
7. Take Time Everyday (or every week) to Just Breathe
Sit and do nothing while there is still so much to get done? Most definitely. We need these moments to be able to keep going for the long haul.
We live in a fast-paced complicated world. Simplifying and slowing things down could actually do us all some good.
Do we get less done over a given time period? Most likely. But we are also happier people because of it.
Jenny Reyes pens the blog, My Mommyology which is our featured blog of the month. She currently lives in Chapel Hill North Carolina, where she is a full-time student of the science of motherhood, with her two little girls as her prime teachers. She also moonlights as one of the partners in the marketing consultancy firm called Your Brand Story. Among other things, Jenny enjoys reading, traveling and scuba-diving.