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A few tips for life as a busy mom

07.10.19

5 second rule.  This is from Mel Robbins who has a ton of videos on youtube.  Idea is that the moment you think of a goal or something you want to/need to do, your brain will start to talk you out of doing it.  You have 5 seconds before your brain starts trying to talk you out of doing what you need to do.  So the moment you think of what you need to do, you say “5-4-3-2-1” then do it before your brain talks you out of it.  She has really good talks about how no one is ever motivated to do the crap that they don’t want to do; you have to find other systems to get you to do this stuff.  She also talks about the power of starting your day in the right way.

Wake up when the alarm goes off.  Hitting the snooze button repeatedly is counterproductive and starts the day off on a downward spiral because 1) quality of sleep while the alarm is repeatedly going off over and over again is poor and 2) its demoralizing to think “I’ll get up in 10 minutes” and then just hit the snooze button over and over again.  It’s like starting the day off by failing at your very first goal.  If your first goal of the day is to get up when the alarm goes off, sticking to that goal starts your day off with a feeling of success.  There are lots of ways to help get up with the alarm goes off (Mel Robbins 5 second rule; placing the alarm far enough away from where you sleep that you can’t mindlessly hit the snooze button while laying in bed.) 

Make your bed.  Doesn’t need to be perfect, just something that looks somewhat decent.  Starts  your day off with accomplishing another goal, and helps your room look good all day.  Also provides a nice looking spot to turn to at the end of the day. 

Time alone in the morning – try getting up 30 minutes before everyone else gets up (if not 30 min, try even 15 minutes.  Or try longer. Whatever you want to try.)  Have some quiet time alone doing whatever you want – journal, drink a cup of coffee, read, listen to a podcast, clean, make a list of your daily or weekly goals, use the time to take small actions on goals etc.  Try it for a few weeks and see if this works for you.  If you try it and it doesn’t work for you, try this same idea but at night after the kids are asleep. 

Don’t feel guilty.  Feeling any guilt for being a working mother is bullshit, plain and simple.   Being a working mom shows your kids how to be a mom who can support herself and her family and this is a crucial thing for your kids to learn. 

Be very, very selective in what things you say Yes to, and don’t feel guilt for the things you say No to. Think about what sorts of things in your life you could maybe take off your plate, even if it takes time to get it off your plate.  For example, if you are stressed and overwhelmed, don’t get a big pet like a dog, and don’t feel guilty for telling your kids no.  For me this means never volunteering in my kids class at school, just as an example.

Writing down goals – often there is something powerful about physically writing down your goals and actual paper journals or day planners (even if just a basic 50 cent notebook) can help.  Write down your goals, break them down into smaller action items.  Also, physically writing down and doing a brain dump of every task that you have on your plate can be a helpful exercise to declutter your mind.

Time blocking. Work on one thing at a time.   If you have a day job, don’t try to work on your side job at the same time that you are at work (with the exception of lunch and other breaks at work – these blocks of time can be useful for working on other projects.) 

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