Perhaps every day is the same as before: your day starts off like a flash and ends in a blur and in between, you drag kids out of bed, fix breakfast, work eight hours, and chauffeur the kids around to different practices. Wait...your day is hardly finished - you still have to fix dinner and help with homework! Now this isn't just regular homework, it's a science project that's due tomorrow and it requires items you don't have in your home...(yes, your child did tell you about it last week). As you rush to the store, the clock doesn't stop. There is so much you need to do and want to do for yourself and your health; however, between the kids, work, household, spouse, there is simply not enough time in the day. Does this sound like your typical day?
At some point or another, we all wish we can turn back the hands of time or add a few extra hours in the day, but that wouldn't be realistic. I ask you, "Would you really utilize that time for yourself or for someone else?" Nine times out of ten, you would fill those extra hours doing something for others.
It's time to face the fact that we only get 24 hours, 1440 minutes in a day...no more. Since we can't change time, here are a few strategies to help you free up some time for yourself.
1. Just say "NO": Let's face it, if you can't do it, don't really want to do it, then don't do it. It's not only going to add to your already overwhelming schedule but it's going to make you an unhappy camper. Be selective about what you spend your time on. You don't have to do everything.
2. Prioritize: Establish a list of your responsibilities - those things that you do day in and day out. As you go through the list, determine which things are most important and which things don't have any value and steal time out of your day. Then prioritize them.
3. Organize: Clean up the clutter and organize yourself. This way you will know what you need to do and when, so you are better prepared and not trying to do a million things in one day. (Remember that science project that you forgot about?) It's always nice to have a family calendar posted. It helps to keep everyone organized so things don't fall through the cracks!
4. Share Responsibilities: Again, you don't have to do everything! Share responsibilities with family members and friends. For example, instead of chauffeuring around the kids to each practice yourself, share the responsibility with another parent on the team. You may feel a little guilty at first; however, you will find that it benefits every involved. You get an opportunity to do something for yourself and your kids get an opportunity to tell you about their practice at dinner. And on your carpool days, you've given another deserving parent some time off.
5. Time for self: This is a big one! You have to make the time for yourself. Make it a part of your daily routine. Make the time to mediate, read a book, or workout. Put it on the family schedule in BOLD LETTERS. Work around the day and time you have scheduled and don't let anything get in the way of it. Remember to "Just Say No"!
The bottom line is that your life will be more fulfilling if you did a little something for yourself on a regular basis. Not only you will be happy, but your family will be happy. Remember...When mommy is happy, everyone is happy!