Mamas, you are busy creatures! You raise your little ones, support your husband, and encourage your friends. You work a career and take care of your family, which is the equivalent of two full-time jobs. And you cook and clean and shop and make sure that everyone has what they need to be successful!
Whew…when you write down everything encompassed in your role as Mother, you notice just how fabulous you are!
But that job description of Mama may also stress you out. You may be asking, “Do I actually raise my kids to be contributing members of society? Do I actually support my husband in his career? Do I even take the time to care for my friends?”
Or maybe you wonder if you clean thoroughly enough, shop for the “right” things, or just do your best at motherhood.
Let’s just face reality: motherhood can be stressful.
You do a lot! And MomFabulous wants to cheer you on and challenge you to take the next step that’s right for you. Which is why we want to share our best time management tip for stressed out Moms.
Introducing Important and Immediate
Our time management tip only involves two elements, because let’s be honest, no busy Mama has time for a complicated time management system.
Element #1: Important. These tasks contribute to the long-term success of your personal life and family. This includes things like spending time as a family, educating your children, being intentional to plan date nights with your spouse, taking time to do something for yourself, etc..
Element #2: Immediate. As the title explains, these tasks need to be handled immediately, with urgency, or on a deadline. These include buying something for your child’s class project due tomorrow, preparing food for an event, scheduling a doctor’s appointment, paying bills, returning an important phone call, etc.
Pretty simple and self-explanatory, right? Awesome! Now we’re going to overlap those two elements into 4 practical time management tips for stressed-out moms.
Time Management Tip #1: Important and Immediate
Most Mama’s wonder which tasks to tackle first. Here’s how to decide: do the ones that are both important and immediate! That means they are valuable to the health of yourself and/or family, and they have a deadline or time constraint.
Here are a few examples:
- Your child is sick. Your child’s health is important, and scheduling a doctor’s visit is an immediate need.
- You’re leaving for a week-long vacation tomorrow. It’s important that you pack the proper clothes, toys, and supplies so that your family is prepared. Since you are leaving early in the morning, packing needs to be an immediate task.
- Your child got in a fight at school. Your child’s character, friendships, and academic success are important. The situation requires immediate action so you can timely and appropriately engage with your child and school staff, plus carry out the necessary consequences.
- You are volunteering at an event this weekend. This event is important to you, which is why you volunteered your time and efforts. You need to complete your tasks immediately (like to prepare food, coordinate with other volunteers, complete payments, communicate with the caterer, etc.).
Time Management Tip #2: Important and Not Immediate
Sometimes Mamas get stuck on this one: tasks are important, but they don’t require immediate action. However, we feel that they are so important that we should handle them instantly. In reality, important but not immediate tasks can be scheduled for a later time.
- Making a dentist appointment. It’s important that you keep your teeth clean, but you don’t need to have them cleaned for another 9 months, so it’s not immediate.
- Hosting an end-of-the-year event. You value your child’s class, your kid’s sports, or your co workers, so they are important. But the end-of-the-year event is still 6 months away so it’s not immediate. (Booking a venue could an important and immediate, but many of the other tasks can be scheduled gradually.)
- Making dinner. It’s important that your family eats a nourishing meal together in the evening. However, you just woke up so it’s not immediate that you prepare dinner. (However, it may be important and immediate that you plan when to start prepping the meal or what to cook for dinner.)
Time Management Tip #3: Not Important and Immediate
These are the wishy-washy tasks. The ones that often get placed on the back burner until the last second. You know the tasks that make you think, “Why do I have to do this?” You don’t find them important, but they really are immediate.
- Responding to text messages. People often appreciate an immediate reply, but it’s usually not important. They are just curious what you’re making for dinner, how’s the weather there, or if your kid finally got the hang of potty training.
- Your neighbor stops by. They started making cookies and need to immediately borrow a cup of sugar. But your neighbor’s baking habits are not important to you (unless, of course, they are going to share with you!).
Time Management Tip #4: Not Important and Not Immediate
Mama, this last tip is all about saying no to things that are not important and not immediate! Your plate is full enough, and you would rather give your energy to the things that matter. You have the freedom to say no to things that fall into this category!
- Watching television. Let’s be real about this one. It’s not important that you watch TV, and it’s not immediate either.
- Scrolling social media. This one is similar to television: it’s not important and not immediate.
- A mindless shopping trip. You don’t actually need anything at the store. And you don’t particularly care for shopping. So it’s not important and it’s not immediate.
Feel the freedom to make better time management choices!
Mama, we hope you can remember those two simple words: important and immediate. Allow those elements to focus your time management and decision making skills!
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