Being a parent is one of the hardest jobs in the world. How many times do you wake up in the morning with a checklist that’s longer than the 24 hours you’ve been given? There doesn’t seem like there are enough hours in the day to go to work, do homework with your children, drive them to their extra-curricular activities, cook, clean, breathe, sleep, plus make sure that your children are academically, socially, emotionally and spiritually sound human beings.
I’ve struggled for a long time trying to find balance being a wife, mom, homeschool teacher, and business owner, all while making sure that I stay sane.
Honestly, there are times when I feel like I’m not doing a great job, but I do try to make every effort to be intentional about how I manage my time. Over time, I’ve gotten better and using some suggestions listed below, I’ve seen a significant difference in the flow of our household. And, while I don’t have all of the answers, I wanted to offer some suggestions that have helped my family.
Here are a few to assist you:
- Assess your time. A lot of my time is spent on my phone answering emails and updating social media for three business accounts. If you’re not disciplined, you will get distracted. Thankfully, the iPhone has an app called screen time. It allows me to see a breakdown of where and how much time I spend on a particular app. I noticed that instead of doing business, I was wasting time and scrolling. Now, I set time limits on apps to help me stay focused.
- Set a schedule and stick to it. Life gets very crazy, especially if you have more than one child, but you have to create a daily/weekly schedule and stick to it. Once you’ve finished a task, check it off, move on to the next item and don’t allow disruptions to occur. This will keep you disciplined.
- Learn how to multitask. Last night I did my youngest daughter’s hair for a photo shoot while she was completing homework. Figure out what you can do in the car, grocery store, at home, in the doctor’s office, etc. Multitasking will help you reduce time and check off more than one item off of your list.
- Create a calendar and post it in your home. This gives you a visual reference and helps you keep track of what’s going on every day. When life gets a little overwhelming, look at your calendar and ask yourself, “Are there appointments that I can shift around? Can I say no to some engagements? Can I call another mom/dad and ask them to assist me?” Make sure you sync this calendar to your phone, spouse’s phone, and print it out as well to take with you when you’re running errands.
- Plan. One of the biggest time savers is learning how to plan your week in advance. Every family is different. My schedule is insane. Between our business, dance, gymnastics, and work, we are always on the run. I plan out our week on Sunday so that I won’t find myself crying and frustrated by Wednesday.
- Delegate tasks: As a homeschool mom and business owner, every minute of my time counts. I’ve learned to delegate responsibilities to both of my girls. This eliminates my stress, decreases my to-do list and also makes them accountable for what they’re responsible for.
- Learn how to say, “No!” Honey, that is a sentence by itself. Whew! It’s empowering and freeing. Learn how to use that word with confidence. There will be birthday parties you can’t attend, meetings you will have to reschedule, requests you have to deny, and demands you won’t be able to meet. It’s ok.
These are a few suggestions, but I hope they help. Do what you can, use what applies to your house, and remember that it’s ok to leave some things unfinished.