Far too often during our days, mothers feel like they just aren’t doing enough. This primarily comes into play when it comes to quality time with their children. I am one of those moms, and one day in an act of desperation I graphed out my weekly obligations to see how I could manage it all. What I found was really interesting.
1. Not everything I do is important. I put everything on my chart, including time allotted for laundry, preparing meals and traveling to work. What I realized is that I was putting priority on items that weren’t really all that important. When I realized this, I decided to move it down the list of importance to allocate more time to other items.
2. I spend more time with my kids than I thought. Between the early morning snuggle time before work, dinner together, bath time, and regular evening playing, time with the kids was actually one of my larger blocks of time. Without taking the time to really draw it all out, I wouldn’t have realized this. My mommy guilt was lessened upon coming across this realization.
3. Early wake ups are vital. I have pushed away the idea of early wake-ups for a very long time. I love sleeping and it loves me. But after charting my days I saw that there really is a big benefit to getting up earlier than the other members of my family. Whether it be for the purpose of exercising, writing, reading or even just drinking coffee in silence, the benefits are clear to me now.
4. Self-care is non-negotiable. Mom’s go 24/7. They are never off duty. This leads to burn out and illness and general grumpiness. You can’t be a top notch mom if you don’t take care of yourself. Even if it’s in the early morning hours that you now have available, you have to put those opportunities higher on the list of priorities. If Mama isn’t taken care of, nobody is taken care of.
5. Delegation is key. There are just too many things that need to happen to keep a household running. Even with a fully participating partner, there’s just too much to be done. It’s all but impossible to have an impeccable house, well-fed kids and be perfectly primped and manicured while still holding on to your mental stability. Assigning chores to the kids, having grocery delivery, signing up for meal service – whatever helps you out is not something to be ignored and adds extra hours to your day to use as you wish.
Taking 20 minutes to write down everything that I am responsible for in a week had life changing realizations. I wish that I had done this long ago, as I know that a lot of the guilt that I placed on myself would have been washed away with my findings. Being a mom isn’t easy, and oftentimes we are our own worst enemies. Doing this one simple task can help you see your weeks for what they are and place importance on the things that matter.
Kristyn Meyer is a freelance writer hailing from the mitten state. She is a mother, wife, writer, baker and wannabe coffee connoisseur. She is also the author of two children’s books – “Brother of Mine” and “I Don’t Know”, available on Amazon.