Life can get pretty chaotic for busy mums on the go. Moreover, if you’re a working mom, then you have to deal with double the stress. From one side you have travel, carpools, errands, taking care of the home. From the other side you have work meetings, reports and long hours in the workplace. It’s very difficult to get everything done in time and to keep up with your daily duties. These time saving tips won’t work like a magic trick, but will help you keep your sanity and keep everything in your life organized.
Wake up a little early. For many of us waking up early is like torture. However, it also has many upsides, like the fact that you’ll have a couple of minutes to yourself, and you’ll be able to enjoy the peace and quiet for a while. Now, this doesn’t mean to get less sleep, of course. Getting enough hours of sleep is pivotal for every busy mum. It’s not only healthy, but it gives us the energy we need to go full speed the whole day. By creating a healthy routine where you go to sleep on time and wake up like half an hour before your kids, you will notice that your day will go on a more positive note.
Remove time wasters. We all have things in our lives, which only waste our precious time. Maybe you often lose your keys and spend lots of time looking for them. Maybe it takes you too much time to prepare meals, because your kitchen is too stuffed, too disorganized, or it’s just not functional. Or maybe you spend too much time browsing the web in the evening, and then you’re tired in the morning? Find your time wasters and take care of them. Keep your keys near the door, organize your kitchen, so you can easily navigate through it, and limit your family’s web time during weekdays. Once all those minor time-wasting habits are taken care of, you will find more time for other, more important things.
Do grocery only once a week. Going to the grocery store with kids can make even the most stable person insane. In addition, the big grocery stores are not helping, by placing candy in the lower shelves where little hands can grab them, and cute little faces can cry until you agree to buy everything they want. Doing that a couple of times a week is unthinkable. Choose one day of the week and do groceries only then. Prepare a meal plan for the whole upcoming week, make a list with everything you’ll need for it, and buy everything on your grocery day. This way you can save not only time, but also money.
Prepare from the night before. Getting ready in the morning is the most stressful part of the day. Preparing yourself for the morning from the evening can take away a lot of that stress. For instance, you can make your kids prepare their clothes from the evening. Backpacks, purses and briefcases can also be prepared then, as well as lunches for the next day. You can even set the table for breakfast from the evening before. All these small things will make the morning routine easier and faster.
Batch all the cleaning tasks. Cleaning is an unpleasant activity, but it still has to be done. The best way to approach it, is to be organized, follow a clear schedule, and batch the cleaning tasks together. You can make a list of all the cleaning tasks by category, like cleaning the floors, dusting, cleaning and clearing out kitchen appliances, cleaning the bathroom, doing laundry, cleaning windows, and so on. Then create a schedule that might work for you. For instance, dusting, cleaning the bathroom, cleaning the windows and the kitchen appliances can be done once a week, while the laundry and cleaning the floors – twice a week. Adjust the schedule with your partner and try to stick to it.
Get the kids to help with cleaning. Kids should pitch in for the cleaning too, doing chores which are appropriate for their ages, of course. For instance, each of them can clean their own room. Older children can also help with dishes and laundry. It’s good to teach these things from a youngest age, so kids don’t consider cleaning a punishment (even though it feels like it).
Learn to say “No”. Nowadays every family is overwhelmed with all the things they have to do, and their calendars are often overscheduled. Truth is that you don’t need to join every group and volunteer for every school event or sign up your kids for every activity that comes along. Choose only the things, which make every member of your family truly happy, and stick with them.
Make time for yourself. The most important thing every busy mum must do, is take care of herself. Even if it’s only once a week, or just 20 minutes a day, you need to find some time for yourself, to keep your sanity. If you want, you can spend it in a bubble bath, or do some yoga or just rest on the sofa and watch TV. Whatever it is, make sure it makes you happy. Mums always take care of everyone else, we shouldn’t forget to take care of ourselves too.
Jane Wilson is a working mum and a blogger from Melbourne. She manages the local branch of Fantastic Cleaners, a professional cleaning company, which provides a wide range of services for residential and business clients. Her passion towards home improvements also urged her to create her own personal blog, called Modern Housewives, where she provides great tips, DIY projects, and more.