- Outsource what you can and systemize everything else! Sounds easy, right? Not necessarily. If it was, wouldn’t everyone be doing it? So, what do I mean by this? I mean if you have the means financially, outsource whatever you can, unless you love to do it. Cleaning, cooking, laundry, shopping, the list goes on. Outsource anything you can and if you can’t due to limited resources such as money or services in your area, set up a system. Cooking, for example, can be done in bulk. By creating a weekly meal plan, you save time not going to the store throughout the week and on your cooking time if it was prepped in advance over the weekend. Have the whole family take 1 hour each week and assign each person something to clean. The stuff that only needs to be done once a month makes it into the rotation and each person only lost 1 hour instead of 1 or 2 people losing 2-4 hours or more.
- Don’t underestimate doing things bi-weekly or monthly. If you have a hobby or something else you love to do that fills you up and you want to do it at least weekly but don’t have the time or other resources to make it happen, try to set it up bi-weekly or monthly. Don’t ignore it completely because then you are miserable without it in your life and everyone around you suffers, too. They love you and want you to be happy and bi-weekly or monthly should be completely manageable in most cases. While it’s not as often as you might like, it’s better than nothing, so don’t underestimate it. Take advantage of it!
- Remember that life has seasons. Do all of these things sound great but you work extra jobs to get out of debt and have tiny kids that not only can’t help you they can’t even help themselves? It’s a season!! Embrace it because while you not only won’t be able to get close to everything you want, you probably won’t even hit a fraction of it right now, there are things you will miss about it when it’s gone. Know that you have time in the later seasons to make up for what you are missing out on now.
I can't be the only one out there fuming over having conflicting priorities. Why do I desire so much yet have so little time to accomplish it all?
Want to know the real downer? The comparison thief and mommy guilt sweep in and tell us everyone is doing it better and we'll never be able to do it well enough. No wonder there's so much mental illness going around! We can never seem to win no matter how we spin our wheels!
But, what if we can? What if we take control and build the life we want? What if we gave ourselves grace and accepted that NO ONE can do it all?? We need to decide what is enough and what is enough for right now.
Is it easy? NOPE! When you see the word “impatient” in the dictionary, my name is next to it as the definition. If I want to lose weight, have a successful side business, run a horse and mental illness ministry then I want all those things now! I need to work to them now or they'll never happen, right?
But, what happens if I miss my life along the way? What if I spend my kid's childhood chasing the things I wanted? I'd wake up one day with everything I wanted and regret not living in the moments I had. Is it worth it? Not to me. And probably not to anyone who made those decisions and is in that place right now, either.
So, what do we do about it?
Seriously, we just breathe. Like, deep, take back control of your mind breathing. The only thing sitting around being peeved that you can't do everything is doing is firing you up, making you want to drink, and keeping you from achieving ANY of it at all. Just breathe, take back the control, and focus.
Lay out the priorities
So, really, write them down. Go ahead, I'll wait. Got them? Ok, now, put them in order. Then, figure out how much time you have to work on them. Have enough time for 5? Awesome, start with tasks that work on the top 5. Just enough room for 1? Guess what, that's ok! Working toward even just 1 thing is better than none. As you complete some or your situation changes, you can add more in.
Let it go
There's absolutely nothing you can do about the fact that you can't do it all. Nope. I tried. You just can't. Figure out how to let it go and be ok with that. Barn time, painting, gardening, CBD, music, a bath, calming oils, playing with the dog, whatever. Escape the place of stress and frustration and go to the happy place. It's easier to tell yourself that it's ok to let it go when you are in your place of peace. The place where things are ok and good and not overwhelming.
Got it? Good. Now, have I mastered all of this? Heck no! But I'm way closer to being good at this then I was before. It's amazing the progress you make when you take a lot of even small, far apart steps. You can still get somewhere and it doesn't even feel like it takes as long as it seemed like it would. Try it. You'll see. Did you? Comment and let us know how it went!