Time Management 101 for Moms
Time management is important in every aspect of our lives. As moms, we are always in need of balance with everything that we have to get accomplished on an average day.
We can at times feel overwhelmed when we are not able to meet the demands of time and feel like we have not accomplished anything.
I completely understand when it comes to managing our times, that we can sometimes be our own enemies. Either we may micromanage our time or even macromanage it as well.
I am not here to teach new tricks or time management skills. My goal is to help you find new free time instead of the opposite of working to maximize your time.
The best way to overcome how we manage our time is to be systematic about it by finding ways to make the process easier for us.
So here are a few tips that you can use to manage your time more effectively without feeling overwhelmed!
Have you also found any ideas that you could share? Please feel free to add to my list, or ask your questions or concerns in our FORUM section. I would be happy to help you!
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“Identify distractions in your life that are taking valuable time that could be spent on much more productive or important things."
What are the distractions in your life that really should not be there whether it's, for example, spending a large amount of unproductive time on social media?
Not that you cannot relax or engage in social media or binge on television, but does it take up the majority of your time to the point that you ask afterward, "I am so behind on XYZ".
Think again and try to time yourself when engaging in distracting moments.
2. Have a set morning routine
Let's face it, some are morning persons, while others (majority) are not. Define which one you are and set a standard. Mornings are important because it defines how early you awake to get the day started or how long you snooze the clock to go back to sleep.
Either or, be proactive in defining a scheduled time to wake up. A tip is to set your alarm time 30 minutes earlier than normal. Put your alarm clock far away from arm's length to prevent the tendency of snoozing.
Once out of bed, stay out of bed. Do not in any way return. After you have gotten everything done for the morning, you may realize that you have 30 minutes extra to do other things, such as preparing breakfast or do early morning exercise.
3. Planners/Post-it Notes/Whiteboards
These are ideal for jotting down reminders, lists of things to be done, tasks, etc. Planners offer a great way to keep organized as busy moms. The more organized you become, the better it is for you to manage your time well.
There are different planners available for day-to-day plans (Mommy Inspired Planner), meal preparation (Mommy Inspired Meal Planner), etc, that you can purchase here on my website, by clicking on the link. I do hope that they will help you to stay organized!
For Post-it Notes, get different colors so that you can personalize them to specific activities, for instance, blue for work/business related, red for grocery/shopping, etc. Have a few stacks around as well so that you can have reminders readily available to get your day going.
If you are like me and would like to have a visual reminder, get a whiteboard and jot reminders down on it. I have missed enough doctor's appointments to know the importance of having a visual reminder somewhere.
4. Tackle tough tasks first thing in the morning
So often, we tend to randomly just tackle any projects we can lay our hands on throughout the day, but quite frankly, we end up not getting anything accomplished.
The goal of maximizing our time throughout the day is to tackle the tough task first thing in the morning. The reason why is because our morning time is when we are the most alert. After having breakfast, there is a peak in your energy levels that prepares you for the day ahead, so get started on those tough tasks first.
You will thank me later if you have not fallen asleep on a major project you had to do that was due the next day, but you did it in the evening right before bed hmm...
5. Make your own breakfast, lunch, and dinner
You make think that this is impossible, and you don't have enough time on your hands to make meals, etc. Point of correction! You can find the time if you want to.
Have you seen the long car lines in the fast-food drive-through in the mornings for example? Can you imagine how long it will take you to grab breakfast? Why not then utilize the same time in the mornings and fix your own meals?
Or for some, pack or prepare the meals the night before and be ready to grab them to go before you head through the door in the mornings? There are so many easy or convenient meals available that are so simple to prepare and hey for the budget-friendly moms, will definitely save you a lot of money.
But the key here is that you are cutting back on the time you take to go to restaurants etc. throughout the day. Instead, this time could be used to reading a book, go for a walk at lunchtime, or any interest of yours.
Don't forget to grab my Mommy Inspired Meal Planner (Bonus free Toddler Meal Plan is available as well with purchase) printable available on my website to help you get organized with meal planning and preparation.
6. Maximize time by avoiding peak time
The dreaded peak time, the "humdrum" time of daily life that can take the energy out of you. But think about it this way. Peak times really steal a lot of your time!
Therefore think about the peak times that can be avoided especially if you have a flexible schedule. For example, instead of choosing to do groceries in the peak evening hours, why not save that for morning hours when the supermarket is quite frankly empty?
For some more adventurous moms, 24-hour grocery stores can give you the flexibility to go in the off-peak times. Wherever the adjustments can be made based on your schedule choose to tweak those areas instead.
Also as a result of covid19, many supermarkets and stores now have curbside pickup. That is super helpful, especially for moms with little ones who may need to grab items without having to bring kids into the store. That was a definite lifesaver for me!
7. Consider your priorities
We all have priorities in our life. However, we also have formulated some that are not so important as we may have thought.
Let say, for example, the time we spend on social media or television for the bingers, yes I said it!
Do you really need to spend that much time on the not so necessary activities, which we think are fun but for the most part, can be an emotional roller coaster looking at Sally going on vacation with her family to Hawaii and you are at home with your 3 kids running wild?
Be reminded I am in no way against any form of social activities that you choose for your me-time. I am only concerned about the amount of time that is used up that can be freed up to do other things that you really want to get accomplished like a side job or hobby.
Maybe not a priority right when you think about it! What could you have been doing instead of spending countless hours on the not-so-important stuff in your life? Rather try to set some goals that you would like to accomplish and tackle them first.
8. Get evening routine with kids accomplished first
I cannot stress the importance of getting your evening routine accomplished first before anything else. You will thank me later.
Get a set schedule for the evening time and try to stick to it.
If dinner is at 6 pm, then let dinner be at 6 pm. I have found that kids actually follow a routine more when it is scheduled than just to do anything as the day unfolds.
Also, the more you create a routine, the easier it is for you to get time for yourself after getting everybody off to bed.
It's a good trade-off don't you think?
An additional tip I may suggest is to also follow the same weekday schedule on the weekends as well. You will thank me later when Monday rolls around. It won't be such a huge hassle trying to get the kids back on schedule for school. Get organized with a (Mommy Inspired Planner) to keep track of schedules.
9. Have a separate space for productivity
Try to have a separate space for productivity. For example, a work office, loft, or quiet kitchen area. Do not attempt to do anything in front of the television set. You have been forewarned! Television is by far the worst productivity zapper ever created.
Can you really get anything accomplished in front of the television? Absolutely not! Don't try to rationalize this one either, because you can't convince me hard enough.
In order to maximize productivity, you need to have a separate space to get things accomplished. An office space or nook etc. away from any distractions is crucial to fostering great time management skills.
10. Do small housework every day so that it does not pile up.
Here is a tip that will solve most of the problems with getting housework accomplished.
Do a small amount of housework every day so that you will not have a pile of mess waiting on you that seems like a death threat. Each day, for example, have a set time to do something, like wiping the kitchen counters or folding laundry.
This will definitely save you some time and reduce the messy house stress when you fall behind on getting anything done. A little chore a day will keep the mess away. Hey, have the kids help out too! Even a 2-year-old can put some dishes in the sink!
Here is a FREE chore chart download that you can use to set chores for your kids to do to help out.
Overall, time management is necessary in order to maximize your efficiency without the possibility of feeling overwhelmed.
Take all 10 tips into consideration and make the changes that are necessary.
For more tips on time management visit my blog post on:
Did you find the strategies listed in this article helpful? What were some of your favorite tips? How have they worked for you? Leave a comment below, I’d love to know what you think.
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