The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Sharon at Mom of 6.
I am in love with Laura’s series this year on Peaceful Organized Homes, and her post a week ago asking “Are Your Expectations Too High?” really resonated with me. Because I am indeed someone who walks that fine line of expecting so much from myself in terms of keeping my home and life clean and organized, and acknowledging the fact that there is more on my plate than can reasonably be accomplished in any given day. But like most of you- I still plow ahead every single day- trying to get as much done off of that to-do list as possible, trying to make another home-cooked meal for my kids, making sure that everyone gets to their school, sport, activity, or appointments on time. Every day I keep running like a gerbil on a treadmill- and after weeks and weeks (okay months and months) of doing this…. I crash and burn.
I find myself exhausted and cranky. I don’t have the same level of patience for my kids and things like spilled milk or misplaced library books. And when the kids leave for school, I find myself unmotivated and unwilling to tackle a single thing off of that to-do list. And that’s when I know… it’s time to give myself a little break.
Find a Way to Connect a Few Open Hours Together
It’s easiest to do this when they kids are in school- I put them on the bus and then I can declare that from 9-12 I will “do nothing”. Which means I can read a magazine, take nap, do a little gardening if I want… but these hours are “my time” and are not to be used up by “getting stuff done”.
Lower your Standards on Meals for the Week
Sure, I think it is important to cook healthy meals from scratch- but for one week no one is going to fade away to nothing if we order in a night or two, eat a few frozen meals, or eat PB&Js for dinner. The kids actually think this break from the norm is fun- and for me, it really helps me to feel as if I am taking some time off from cooking.
Ignore Your To-Do List
Sure- there may be a few must-do items… fine- give yourself an hour during the day to knock those out. But for the rest of the week, ignore that list. Chances are- everything on it can wait one more week to be addressed!
Do Something You Don’t Normally Make Time To Do
I love taking walks with my kids and with my dog…. getting out breathing in the fresh air, getting a little exercise that feels more like it is filing my soul than “working out”. Be sure to do some activities that you normally don’t make time for while taking your break. They do more to re-charge you than almost anything else!
Who else needs a break right now?