When I was younger, I kept hearing from different women how hard it is for them to juggle work and family, and like many who were not in their situation, I thought they were exaggerating. But once I started my own family, I realized just how stressful it is to be a working mom. If you have found yourself ambushed by the perks of adulthood, I have a couple of advices for you how to live through the day without completely losing your grip.
Throw the Trash Out
Before even thinking about changing your routine completely, grab a large bag, and take a look around your home and office for clutter. There are probably many papers, notes, used pens, and many other little things you do not need, but never thought about getting rid of them. Trust me, once I threw all of it in the trash, and cleaned around, I already felt better organized.
Writing to Remember
I never believed in lists and writing down everything, but one day at work we were given promotional compendiums and I have to admit that I have changed my mind about these things completely. Once I started carrying these little things around in my bag, I started managing my daily obligations much more efficiently. I rarely forget about appointments or duties I planned for the day, but sometimes, there are just too many of them, and it is much easier to just open up my planner in the morning and quickly skim through it. I also like to use those colorful post-its, where I can just jot down whatever comes to my mind, and stick them to the wall where I can see them. This way I put something in writing the moment I think of it.
Do It Today
Plan your day one night before, is what I always say. And I mean everything – from clothes you want to wear, chores at home, paperwork at the office, to what you are going to eat tomorrow. This way, even if you oversleep, you will reduce the amount of stress, as you will know exactly what your next step is.
It is okay to admit that you are just human, and that sometimes, it is too much for you. That is why I asked for help from my family. My husband and I take turns on who is going to take kids at school, and who gets to go grocery shopping. I also gave my kids a couple of things to do, like clean their own rooms, wash the dishes, or vacuum the rest of the house. I believe that this way I am teaching them responsibility.
Finally, the most important thing I would mention is devoting time to yourself. Do not get me wrong, I love my husband and both of my children, but in order to stay level-minded, you need to set aside at least half an hour every day when you are thinking only of yourself. Whether it is drinking one cup of coffee in the morning, or reading a few pages of your favorite book in the evening, it does not matter, as soon as it is doing something that you love and that relaxes you.