The Motherhood role is not an easy one, no matter how much we were made for it. Taking on anything outside of motherhood, is just another layer of challenge. Being the avid ‘hat wearer’ that I am, people often ask me how I do it all. There have been weeks past where I’m pulling for a shoot one day, on set the next; all while handling ops for other small business, sewing TOTM, homeschooling, and just being Mom. Yes, it can be exhausting. Yes, I have a very full plate, but if previous corporate experience has taught me anything, I know my limits. I also recognize the value of time management.
It may seem silly, but here are 2 things that I find highly effective for time management throughout the day.
I am so guilty of losing myself in a project. I can sit down at my computer and get up HOURS later without realizing the amount of time passed. The best way for me personally to combat this, is to set timeframes for each task when I begin them. This really applies to all areas of life, with a reminder to keep your priorities straight. While I feel I have healthy boundaries in place to always keep family first, its important to To keep myself accountable, I usually set a timer on my phone or kitchen stove. (Sidenote: This is also how we assign tasks in our family and teach concept of time). Especially when it comes to any work that has to be done on the computer or phone, I set a timer so that I’m not completely sucked in and unaware. If I have to get up and walk away because Mom duty calls, it doesn’t matter, I just let the timer keep going. Timeframes should be realistic, or you will just set yourself up for failure. I know when PZ goes down for her nap, I have ‘X’ amount of time to work with. I look at my to-do list, prioritize and assign a portion of that time to each task, then set my timer accordingly. Which brings me to the point I should have mentioned first…
Create a ‘To-Do’ List
I’m a very kinesthetic person when it comes to tasks and calendars. I love the continuity of calendars on my desktop, email and iphone, but a good old fashioned, hand written agenda really does it for me. Suit your ‘to-do’ list accordingly. For me, I have a small annual monthly planner, a weekly planning sheet, and note paper at my right hand side on my desk, at all times. While I hardly crack open the monthly planner unless I’m doing long range planning, my weekly planning sheet is my life saver. Every day is broken down to include my meetings/events and work tasks. Usually a ‘fluff’ or ‘goal’ item as well if I end up with more free time than I realized. There’s even a place to jot down notes and reminders. I keep a stack of them on a clipboard at my right hand side, so in case I need to jot something on an upcoming week, I can. Things that don’t get crossed off the current week, are easy to carry over to the next.
Sure there are other things you can do, but I also want to enjoy my life. No matter what I’m working on, my kids take priority, and always will. Ultimately, you have to remember that sometimes things just have to go with the flow. You will get it all done, just maybe not in this lifetime 😉
Download my weekly planning sheets here.
I’d love to here your best time management advice!