Being a Mom has always been one of the busiest jobs there is, it comes 24 hr a day, which sometimes feels like more, and every day of the week, no breaks or time off! But with today’s hectic 24/7 lifestyle in general, we are busier than we’ve ever been. We talk to fast, and we’re always in a rush. We start things that we never finish and are constantly nagged by the thought that we’ve forgotten to do something. We’ve filled our lives with time-saving devices in the hopes that will free up our time, only to fill it again with more work, activities, and tasks. All of this is adding to our stress and affecting our health. Here are several tips to help you improve your time management.
Create a Time Diary
Take the week and plot out what you do every day. Be honest with your entries. You need to be sure to include everything from the time you spend in the car, to how long you take to eat, to how much time you spend watching T.V. if you don’t know what you are currently doing with your time, you will have no way to make intelligent decisions about how to use your time more effectively. You may seem silly doing this at the start, but believe me you will thank me. I like a good movie at the weekend and that’s fine, but I would rather spend an hour on my business than binge 2 or 3 episodes on Netflix every night. Maybe for you its the rabbit ole of social media, you go on and 23000 likes later, 4 hrs has passed and you have done nothing only scroll mindlessly. Wouldn’t that time have been better put to use somewhere else, like doing one of those many tasks you are always saying you want to do but can’t find the time. Now hear me out, this doesn’t mean you don’t have a life. Include everything you want to do, and find a way to fit it in.
Learn to Say No
This is something I really struggled with until I realised each New Year I hadn’t progressed any further because I ‘never’ had time. I never had time because I was handing it out to other people doing stuff I didn’t want to do! This is because as women we are natural people pleasers and find it hard to say no. Especially as moms because we are so used to putting others first all the time. If someone asks you to do something that you really don’t have time to do, politely, but firmly tell them no, and don’t feel guilty about it. I used to try and put boundaries and then feel so guilty I would cave in and then overcompensate to make up for it. One reason why we feel like we are busy all the time is that we don’t know how to set personal boundaries effectively. Part of declining to do things is so you have more time to focus on your goals. It doesn’t mean you say no to everything and never help no-one, it just means saying no to what you don’t want to do. You don’t need to become a bitch about it.
Create a Time-Based, To-Do List
When you are creating your to-do list, you need to include exactly how much time you expect to spend on each task. When you add how much time it should take to complete a task, it can help you prioritise how to go about accomplishing those tasks. When you prioritise tasks, you tend to focus on those that you can quickly achieve.
Don’t let the progress you make, no matter how small, go unrewarded. It doesn’t have to be a large reward, whether it be a coffee, maybe a bunch of fresh flowers to brighten up your office, or a day off. It is important to acknowledge your progress and enjoy your success. Use your time diary to make decisions about how you want to organise and use your time better. As you make progress with prioritising and saying no, let yourself enjoy your progress.
Learning how to manage your time better will help you reduce the stress in your life. It will also help you find the time to work toward achieving your goals and living the life you’ve always wanted.