Are you ready to learn how to be an organized stay at home mom so you can stop feeling like you’re constantly drowning in a sea of laundry, dirty toilets, uncooked meals, and cranky kids and finally figure out how to live a balanced, productive, and organized life?
I have so many things I want to accomplish – both personally and professionally – and while I’m not a fan of making New Year’s resolutions, that doesn’t mean I don’t have plans to do bigger and better things this year.
Quite the contrary, actually.
I have so many goals floating around in my head that I can barely contain my excitement, and the more I look back over 2016, the more I realize how ineffective I was with my time. Sure, I got a lot done each day, but most of those achievements didn’t really marry up to my ultimate goal of leading a more balanced life.
I’m in good company.
The biggest challenge, for me anyway, is changing my mindset and remembering that success isn’t defined by HOW MUCH we accomplish.
WHAT we accomplish is much more important.
I’ve been giving this concept a lot of thought over the last several weeks, and after wrapping up 2016, evaluating what did and did not work, and thinking about my long-term goals for the year ahead, I’ve spent some time reading various books and articles in an effort to figure out how I can use my time better and be an more organized stay at home mom (well, work at home mom is probably a more accurate description for me!) so I can crush ALL of my 2017 goals without feeling as though I’m neglecting everyone and everything along the way.
And since I know I’m not the only mom out there who feels both excited and overwhelmed with all that a new year brings, I thought I’d share some of the strategies I’ve started to put in place to help me stay focused and get more done in less time.
FIND YOUR ONE THING
One of the most powerful books I read last year was The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller. In the book, Gary introduces the idea that behind every successful person is their ONE Thing – the thing that stands between them and their goal. He asks, ‘what’s the ONE Thing you can do this week such that by doing it everything else would be easier or unnecessary?’, and then compellingly demonstrates that extraordinary results are a result of how narrow our focus is.
If you have a tendency to measure your success by the amount of things you accomplish each day/week, I urge you to rethink your strategy. While it’s great to knock a million thing off your never-ending list of things to do, the key to productivity is to do fewer things for more effect instead.
SET 3 GOALS EACH DAY
I learned this trick in The Productivity Project by Chris Bailey. The idea is to take 5 minutes each morning to write down the 3 things you want to accomplish by the end of the day. You must ensure the list is manageable, especially since life has a way of throwing us curve balls that make it impossible to get through an entire laundry list of action items, and you then dedicate your most productive time to accomplishing those 3 things.
MANAGE YOUR ENERGY PROPERLY
While most of us are good at managing our TIME effectively, I was recently introduced to the idea of managing our ENERGY effectively, and it’s made a huge difference. Once you pinpoint when you are at your most productive – for me, it’s first thing in the morning after I drop my daughter off at school – you must organize your schedule such that you can take advantage of that time to tackle your most important tasks.
WORK IN BATCHES
‘Batching’ involves grouping relevant tasks together and tackling them in one go, rather than splitting them up over the course of a few days. Many people do this in work settings, but what few people realize is how effective it can be in our personal lives as well. Set aside an afternoon or evening each week to take care of mindless tasks – cleaning, laundry, doctor’s appointments, grocery shopping – so you aren’t constantly borrowing time needed for more important tasks several times throughout the week.
TURN OFF ALL DISTRACTIONS
We’re all guilty of getting sucked into the wonderful world of social media, and often turn on a bad movie when we’re working on things that don’t require our full attention, but we tend to underestimate just how much time those little distractions take away from the bigger picture. So shut down your mail program, log out of your social media accounts, turn the TV off, and FOCUS on the task at hand so you’ll have more time to play later.
I could go on and on and share other productivity tricks that have helped me be a more organized stay at home mom – I’ve actually written an entire post about them – but these 6 strategies have been the most effective in helping me identify my biggest goals and setting myself on a path to actually achieve them.
My challenge to you today is to set aside some time to figure out where you want to go from here. What are your dreams and goals? Make sure to THINK BIG. Next, figure out what ONE Thing you need to do to make those dreams a reality. And finally, put together a plan to help you work more effectively so you can accomplish all of your goals without feeling like you’re short-changing someone or something.
Need a planner to help you put everything together? I recommend the Day Designer. I gifted myself one for Christmas, and it has already helped me set goals, create a plan, and define my action items for the year ahead in my quest for a more balanced existence. I highly recommend it!
Paul J. Meyer once said, ‘Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.’
I look forward to proving him right.
How about you?
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