It is ironic that I’m writing about being productive. January was the longest five months of my life. I had influenza A and pneumonia. After nearly three weeks down and just as I started to feel better, I slipped and fell while taking out the garbage, dislocating and breaking my ankle in three places. I am now currently in the midst of a twelve-week recovery that feels like an eternity.
I’ve never felt so unproductive in my life, however, life doesn’t stop, and this is what is on my heart to share with you, my fellow mamas. Kids still need to be fed. Laundry still needs washing. The best thing I’ve done in my current season of life is asking for and accepting help. So, if you’re in a similar situation ASK FOR HELP. This is not a drill!
If you aren’t laid up like me, here are a few productive tips for you able-bodies mamas out there who are stressed and trying to keep up with demands of daily life.
- Set Realistic Expectations
You’re a mom. Your life is one big beautiful interruption of your best laid plans. Try to break larger tasks into smaller ones. (Is anyone else hooked on Marie Kondo’s Netflix show?!) For example: instead of saying you’ll clean the house, choose one room per day to tackle. Much more manageable and gives you a sense of accomplishment when it’s done. If time allows, move onto another task. You’ll feel amazing.
- Get Your Kids in on the Action
My kids now help with the dishes. They feel a sense of pride when they’ve been good helpers! They’ll also love your words of affirmation for a job well done. And you’ll love their help in being productive instead of destructive!
Is this something YOU have to do, or can you delegate it? Is someone going to die if it doesn’t get done today? Probably not.
- Phone a Friend
Have her come visit while you fold laundry, or go grocery shopping with her. Never underestimate the power of friendship to turn the mundane into marvelous when it comes to being productive.
- Stock Up on Freezer Meals
Look, I hate meal planning and cooking. It always helps when you’re between shopping trips or weekly meal plans to have a couple of things ready to go with minimal effort. (Alternative idea: if planning ahead isn’t your thing, try these quick and tasty meals!)
Maybe it’s time to cut ourselves some slack and redefine what productive means. Perhaps it means taking things a day at a time and cutting ourselves some slack. That sounds productive to me! Sometimes perfection is the enemy of “good enough.” Perfection isn’t the same as productivity.