Here are some of my favorite ways to be more productive during the week, gain more “mommy time”, and get out of survival mode.
Kick perfection to the curb
Growing up in a Hispanic home, keeping up with appearances was an unspoken rule. You didn’t share personal life details with others, and you definitely didn’t put your “failures” out on display.
Even when I struggled with anxiety and postpartum depression, no one really knew what I was going through because opening up to others was not something I was comfortable with. Basically, I kept up with appearances and pretended all was well even when I was falling apart.
The problem is that when it finally catches up with us, our physical and mental health has already taken a beating. You can’t do it all, so do yourself a favor and stop trying.
There’s so much freedom in owning your truth, and simply being OK with the fact that we can’t do all the things all the dang time. It removes the guilt we often feel as moms and allows us to accept help from others without reservation.
Eat your frog for breakfast
As a recovering perfectionist with procrastination tendencies, I can’t reiterate how important it is to handle the one task that you hate the most (your frog), first thing in the morning.
There’s so much satisfaction when you take care of a task that you’ve been dreading early in your day. Not only does it boost your confidence, but it also makes all of your other tasks feel like minor nuisances.
Create a list at the beginning of the week of all the things you need to get done, and set a goal to tackle a hard task each morning instead of waiting to do them all at once. By Friday, you’ll be ready to enjoy the weekend and reward yourself for handling the week like a boss.
Take advantage of modern conveniences
I absolutely hate going grocery shopping, but it was a necessary evil that I dreaded every week. When we lived back in Pennsylvania, we resided in a very small town so there was no Instacart or similar services available. Only one store offered a delivery service and you had to book it well in advance.
Now I use Walmart’s free grocery pickup service as well as other delivery options like Shipt and Instacart to shop for all of our groceries. Not only do I save time, but I can also shop from home without the added stress of having to haul my kids to the store.
I’ve also used Amazon Prime and other subscription services to order diapers, cleaning supplies, and even books. I’m currently looking into a home cleaning service so that I can have our apartment deep cleaned once a month.
There are so many options to help make your life easier, that if you’re not sure what’s available in your area, just do a quick Google search. And if you’re wondering if it’s worth, the answer is yes.
Make yourself a priority
There, I said it. I know this is probably the last thing you want to hear when you’re already sleep-deprived and exhausted, but if you think you can continue to function without taking of yourself first, you my friend, are simply fooling myself.
I don’t care if you only start with 30 minutes each day, set time aside for YOU. Something that is completely unrelated to your children’s needs, home, spouse, etc. Get out of the house if you need to, but set that time aside and guard it like a hawk.
Personally, I force myself to get up earlier in order to have a cup of coffee completely uninterrupted. I also love to take a super long hot shower or bath to decompress, so I wait until my husband is home in order to keep this time kid-free.
Do whatever it is that reenergizes you and make time for it. Whether it means escaping to Target or a local coffee shop by yourself a few times each month. Do it. You owe it to yourself.
Create a clutter-free life
The only reason I’m able to remotely function is the fact that I’m super picky about what I allow into my space, what I bring into our home, and even what I say yes to. I rarely volunteer at my children’s schools, instead, I help out with my dollars and leave the volunteering for those that truly enjoy it.
I also don’t buy things for the home unless it serves a purpose or I absolutely love it. I don’t allow my kids to join more than one extra-curricular activity at a time, and I also don’t book up all of my weekends in case I just want to have a free day to do as I please.
Busyness, and owning a bunch of stuff, is not a badge of honor. Life is too short to be tied down by things that only add to our stress. Let that ish go, and instead, do something you truly enjoy with the free time.