School’s in session – finally! And what we love about being back to school is the routine. It’s our own personal, new school year where we get to reset and restart. Here are a few things we can do to get ourselves into a good groove.
Wake Up Right
For all of us, this means something different: a good cup of coffee and the Arts & Leisure section (with nobody shouting, “mom!”), a real shower and a few minutes with the bathroom mirror, a 15-minute meditation on a yoga mat. Whatever it is, it can mean the difference between starting the day with confidence and excitement, and starting the day with dread. We know sleep is sacred and with the busyness of life or parenthood, getting as much as you can of it is #goals. But consider waking up 15-30 minutes early to give yourself the start you need. Or if you can give yourself that start without waking up earlier, all the better. Deciding on a morning ritual and sticking with it can increase productivity, focus, and overall happiness.
Improve Your Balance
Just as we all have preferences for how to start our days, we all have different obligations. And we each have to figure out how to balance the many aspects of our lives: work, kids, partners, family, friends, housework, staying fit, it’s a lot. But balance is the best word and the best way. Letting any one thing dominate your day will increase your anxiety about what your neglecting. We know it’s easier said than done.
Keeping a schedule can also really help. Create your own weekly calendar that includes each of your obligations and a realistic time-frame for accomplishing tasks. Ranking these tasks is also helpful. Because we all have different priorities. If you’re someone who can’t go to bed if the house isn’t tidy, then cleaning likely ranks higher than someone who can sleep like a baby even when there are dishes in the sink. For neatness obsessed folks like us, we like to give the kids chores including doing the dishes, cleaning their rooms, and taking out the trash. We also try to throw a load of laundry in before dinner and have it in the dryer during dessert so we can fold it all while we’re watching a great new show before bed.
Learn When to Say, “No”
There isn’t enough time for everything, always. Often we want to say yes because we care and we know that if time were no issue, we could easily get it done! But because time is finite, we must learn to be realistic about what we can and cannot accomplish. Start slowly, giving yourself a few weeks to handle everything in your current universe. If you find you’re easily balancing it all, then go ahead and say yes to the PTA, or taking care of your neighbor’s dog while they’re away, or whatever it is that someone asked you to do and you feel you can handle. And if you just can’t, if you find you’re struggling already, don’t feel bad about saying, “I wish I could, but I’m afraid I can’t.”
You’ll get there. You always do. And if you have any helpful ideas for time management, routine, or getting things done, please share them with us! We love to learn new #lifehacks.