All moms know how hard it can be caring for the little one or the “big one,” making meals, doing the laundry, clearing the dishes, and handling your job. Phew!!! It can be so exasperating. But we do it anyway. And that’s what makes us have the “superpowers”.
Fix the husbands in a room with the kids for an hour or two and get your nails done, or whatever it is you have been pending, barely 30 minutes, and they can’t hold it anymore, Hehehe, you get tons of missed calls from your partner, and you come back seeing your home as a mini storm has happened.
Being a mom is one of life’s greatest gifts and privileges. But why do we see motherhood change so many women that they end up being a shadow of themselves? They hold up on life, suspend those big dreams and ambitions.
Some become overweight and start looking sloppy. The most excuse is: I have kids, so I can’t do this and that. I get that being a mom comes with many sacrifices and sometimes you might have to alter your plans, but that doesn’t mean you have to live as an unproductive woman.
Balancing mom life, work-life, personal life, family, and social life has always been one of moms’ many challenges.
The key for you not holding down your life and living below what you can be with little results is Habit.
Our habits have been ingrained in our subconscious because it’s something we always do. For some persons, it is having a cup of coffee every morning, or for others walking the dog around the neighborhood.
And how does habit equals being a productive mom? The simple formula is developing good habits, and when you become so used to them, you won’t help but act in a way that guarantees results (which is being productive).
There are many habits to cultivate to be productive. Below are 10 sure ones every mom needs to copy to become productive.
1. Have An Early Start
Smart and productive moms know how important it is to start the day earlier, which means waking before others. True, not every mom may be a morning person, but you need an early preparation that notwithstanding, which happens way before others wake up.
You won’t get full concentration to prepare for the day when your toddlers are running around or are too slow to get dressed, or need your attention during bath time.
Have some alone time to clear your head and prepare for the day. Think through your plans and make written or mental notes on how you want the day to go. Once that is settled, you will be ready to start the day with the right mindset.
2. Make Lists
My lists are lifesavers. I don’t think I would have achieved half in my life if I didn’t use lists. Making and using a list is one habit every mom should adopt. Before a new week (most times, I do mine on Saturdays), talk with the kids and your partner and get a picture of how the new week would be.
Say Lola has a game on Wednesday, write that the twins have to go to the pool, pen it on the list, or you need to get groceries by Friday. Check for things that need replacement at home and pen down every chore to be done on your to-do list.
Section each to days and time, and see what can fit in and what can’t. Making a list may seem like a lot of time but trust me, it saves you time and the added stress during weekdays.
You need to refer to your list every morning before starting the day to know how to make things work. That being said, remember a list does not bind you, emergencies may come up, and you may have to tweak things up. However, always use lists as a guide.
One life-saving planner that has always made my organization and list-making process easier is the weekly Afam Uche Goal Chaser. I started using it early last year and it has trumped all my other planners.
3. Take Things A Step At A Time
When you are rushed or pressured, it may be easier to jump into so many things so that you can finish on time. Multitasking is good for moms, but if used wrongly, it can cause a lot of stress.
I get better results when I do not overcrowd myself with so many jobs but focus my attention on a few at a time.
Suppose you have drawn out a well-structured list (there are tons of samples when you Google). You only need to pick one thing at a time. Starting from the most important, give your utmost attention and move over to the next and the next.
This way, you get better results, and there is less stress.
4. Assign Roles/Responsibilities
Dear supermom, you can’t do it all, no matter how badly you want to and how faster you want the work to be. It’s just going to stress you out( the reason we see many moms looking haggard and lean).
Learn to get everyone involved. Remember the home isn’t only about you, it’s involves everybody. Your toddlers can help pick up toys and put them in the boxes, and your 9-year-olds can help in the kitchen, hubby can help with laundry or bathing the kids.
It makes the job done faster. It also creates family bonds, builds interaction, and a sense of fulfillment.
For overly perfect moms ( like I used to be), you need to cut down the slacks a little.
Things will not always be done perfectly ( I have grudgingly accepted that fact). Don’t always stress over the little imperfections. If you have to do some finishing touches on what the kids have to, go ahead, but always appreciate the effort rather than complain it isn’t perfect. You may need to do the very important tasks your self though.
5. Do Regular Reassessment
Take some time after some weeks or months to reassess. It will give you an idea of what is working and what is not. Not everything in your plans or schedules will work at first. It’s a habit, and you will take some time adjusting.
You won’t get perfect at once. You may find that waking up early does not work for you, and you can switch things by doing most of the chores the evening before and having the morning rest properly.
You may also decide to change jobs to give you more time or take any available opportunity. Make it a habit to periodically take reassessments of your life, family, goals, job, e.tc.
As you restrategize, things would become better and easier to do And you end up achieving more.
6. Do Not Overcommit
You are this amazing woman with talents and special abilities, and so many people want your time, advice, want to befriend you, invite you for dinner, a book launch, present new opportunities your way.
All these are nice and things you should look up to, but learn not to commit to too much. There is a need to always draw a line and know when to accept and refuse. If you have too much on your plate, you won’t be able to handle the things that truly matter, your kids, your partner, your family even friends.
So, while it is wise to see new opportunities, be wiser to take the ones that won’t burn you out and give you enough time for yourself and your family. Sometimes it is better to say No.
7. Have Fun With Yourself
Yes, you are a mom, responsible for other people, but remember you had a life before becoming a mom. Does being a mom mean missing out on some of the fun things you used to do?
Nope. Make it a lifestyle to do things that make you happy, making you a better mama. Gardening, sports, hanging out with the girls, reading your favorite book, or even having a good dance with yourself, these things can release endorphins that boost your mood and make you have a quality life.
Keep in touch with old friends, travel, do things you love doing for you and have fun in the process. It is important not to lose touch with yourself in your motherhood journey.
8. Spend, No Have Fun Time With Family
You spending time with your kids or partner doesn’t equate to having quality time with them. It is normal to give them tasks, do assignments, dress them up, take them shopping, but how much of these are quality? How much do you bond with your kids as you spend time with them?
Is it just doing the mundane things with no fun? If you want to be productive as a mom, make every time with your kid’s count. During bath time, give a tickle or give a thumbs up while at the field playing football and give a big hug or throw when they have won.
Encourage with a hug or a pat on the back when they make mistakes or don’t do so well. It makes them draw closer to you and strengthens the bonds you have.
As you learn about their world and are involved, you know when and how to connect with them, and you become a better parent. Your partner should not be left aside.
Make him feel loved as you give some part of your attention to the young ones, reserve enough for him too. Do those fun things you guys once did while you were dating.
A major factor of your productivity as a mom is when you have a family who loves each other and bonds so well. That can only happen if you, your kids, and your partner are on the same page.
This is a very important habit moms need to copy and one of the keys to increased productivity. Finding time to have quality rest, especially when you have a lot to do, can be difficult, but it’s not an option to forfeit.
Your body works in a cycle, and when it’s time to shut down, it has to. Rest is the way it recharges back. It would be best if you had frequent and quality rests. It puts you in a better state of mind.
Don’t get so bogged down with the numerous chores on the To-do lists that you don’t dedicate several hours for rest. Make it a priority. Plan rest time inside your schedules.
Take the kids to Grandma’s, sneak away for some rest, or tell your partner to take them for a walk. Whatever way you do it, find some time for regular rests. It is one of the key habits of productive moms.
10. Self Care
You were first an individual before you became a mother, don’t let that individual slip away ( I always tell my self that). Being a mom is not an excuse not to look good or to care for yourself.
Some moms get so irritated with their kids and sometimes scream at them because they are tired and have lost touch with themselves. Some even envy other women who seem to be handling motherhood so well.
As we analyze the #10 point of being productive, you should make it a habit to take proper care of yourself. Mentally, physically, and spiritually. It’s is very important.
Do not give excuses of time. You make time for what is important, and this is. Learn one or two new things a day, meditate, have a yoga class, do whatever it is that brings your life back. It would make you be a better mom, loved and cherished by you and everyone around.
It isn’t going to be easy adopting these habits all at once. There will be few errors here and there, so don’t be too hard on yourself. With time and constant practice, you will be well on your way to becoming that productive mom you have ever admired.
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