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What is effective time management? What are the benefits of time management? Is it even worth my time to figure it all out? Can I really get everything checked off my to-do list? All this and more answered below in The Best Time Management Tips for Working Moms.
Being a mom is a juggling act. Being a working mom, well… you better have some dang fine time management skills up your sleeve. lol
It’s tough. Trying to DO IT ALL.
- Wake the kids.
- Make sure the kids are dressed.
- Take the kids to school.
- Go to work.
- Run errands on your lunch break, which turns into you cramming a big mac down in like 2.5 minutes.
- Work, work, work.
- Pick the kids up.
- Take the kids to soccer, baseball, volleyball practice.
- Figure out what’s for dinner.
The list goes on and on and on…
As a busy mom, wife, healthcare leader and small business owner, I know what it’s like to have life pull you in all directions – to be overwhelmed and snap at the drop of a hat. Through the years, I’ve learned what it takes to make it as a working mom without losing my sanity.
And now, I want to help you do more than just manage life. I want to help you create a work-life balance that will allow you to live your best life possible!
And part of that is understanding how to make the most out of your time.
What is effective time management?
Time management is simply what you do with your time and how you do it.
For instance, you could hit snooze 5 times and then jump out of bed, scramble to find an outfit for the day, throw your hair in a ponytail, brush your teeth and go.
OR you could get up when the first alarm goes off. Have your clothes picked out the night before. Take your time to put makeup on and fix your hair. Then you still have time to fix your lunch and sip a cup of coffee before leaving.
You see the difference? If you’ve got effective time management skills, your life can happen in unison without all the hustle and bustle and stress.
It’s all about creating habits that align with your values and doing things in a way that feels good to you.
What are the benefits of time management?
The benefits you see from time management all depend on your goals. What do you want to do more of? What do you want to do less of?
You want to have more time to check off the chore list, meal plan for the week, finish laundry, help the kids with homework AND still have time to do something for yourself?
This can be done. And the reward is being able to pamper yourself while not feeling guilty about not getting everything else done.
Want less stress and overwhelm?
That’s doable, too. When you take the time to create systems and habits that work for you and your family, you can accomplish anything.
And that’s where these time management tips for working moms come in. Let’s jump in!
Top 11 Best Time Management Tips for Working Moms
These tips will help you manage your time at home and at work. They are effective in both walks of life, because work-life balance is important as a working mom.
These are literally the best time management tips I can give you.
#1 – Keep a Running To-do List
When I say “running to-do list,” I mean a list that you can add to as you think of things. We all know a mom’s job is never done, right?
And we usually think of things on the fly as we’re in the middle of something. So, it’s good to carry a running to-do list with you so you can easily jot down what needs to be done or check things off as you finish.
Keeping a to-do list is great for times when you get overwhelmed and can’t remember what it is you need to do. You can just pull out your list and prioritize based on what’s most important or pressing at the moment.
#2 – Keep a Family Calendar
I know, I know. You’ve got enough to keep up with in your own planner. But let me tell you, keeping a calendar the whole family can see and add to, is a wonderous tool.
You’ll be surprised how much more involved the rest of the family gets.
Keep your calendar in a common area of the house so everyone sees it on a regular basis. Add all the things, like ball practice, piano lessons, dentist appointments, pictures with Santa. Whatever you’ve got planned, put it on the calendar.
This is also a great thing to have when someone calls and asks for a favor. You’ve got your calendar right there, easy access, to look over for any previously scheduled “favors” or appointments. That way, you can easily say no due to other plans.
If you don’t know where to start, check out this family calendar. It’s just the right size, and it’s cute and customizable so it’ll fit in with your decor.
#3 – Avoid Procrastination Like the Plague
Oh, sweet procrastination. You pull at my heart strings like no other.
Lol. If you can’t tell, this is one I’ve struggled with myself.
It’s easy to get distracted by all things technology these days. We have screens everywhere we turn. And this is the number one form of procrastination for most individuals.
It’s just so easy to pick up the phone and scroll Facebook for hours without even realizing the time that’s passed.
And what about Pinterest? You could get lost on there for days. Am I right? Those algorithms know way too much about what we like.
Even without technology, procrastination comes easily and most often when we dread doing something.
There will always be things we don’t necessarily enjoy doing. But if you just rip off the band-aid and get it over with, you’ll have so much more time for the things you do enjoy.
#4 – Wake Up Before the Kids
You’ve probably heard this before, and it’s for good reason. If you appreciate your “alone time,” this is one habit you’ll be glad you adjusted to.
I wouldn’t trade anything for my morning quiet time. I can journal, meditate, read a book, and drink my coffee in complete peace.
No screaming, no arguing, no “Mom, I’m hungry.” It’s absolutely amazing.
And there is so much more you can get accomplished before the kids wake up.
- You can wash dishes without it being filled up immediately after completion.
- You can do your grocery and meal planning or grocery shop online.
- You can mop the floors without little feet running over your not even dry floors.
Whatever you want to do, the time is yours. Make use of it however your heart desires. Your to-do list will thank you.
#5 – Have a Morning & Evening Routine
Schedules are so boring. So, I’m not talking about a minute-by-minute spread of what you’ve “got to do” every morning and evening.
I’m talking about a layout, kind of like a checklist, of what you’d like to get done every morning or every evening. It’s simple really.
How is this going to help you with time management?
Have you ever left the house in the morning after rushing to get everything together and get out the door and the whole drive to work, you feel like you forgot something?
Or have you went to bed and can’t turn your mind off, because you keep running through your day wondering if there was something important you missed?
Well, with a routine in place, you can check everything off and feel confident that you aren’t forgetting anything important.
Sounds great, right? It’s really that simple.
#6 – Get Enough Quality Sleep
You might be wondering, what does sleep have to do with time management? Everything, really.
If you don’t get enough sleep, your mind and body can’t focus like it should. You’ll be more easily distracted, and you won’t be as energetic and on top of things as you would if you get quality sleep.
When I say quality sleep, I don’t mean 8 hours in the bed. I mean getting the amount of actual sleep your body needs.
For some it might be 6 hours, for some it might be 9.
I personally sleep with my Fitbit on most nights. It tracks how much sleep I get in each sleep stage. REM, light and deep sleep. It’s really cool to be able to track these things.
For me, my sweet spot is usually 9 hours in bed, 8 of which I actually sleep.
If you don’t have a smart watch or fitness tracker, I highly suggest you get one. I have the Fitbit Versa 2, like this one. But there’s actually a new version now, and I will be upgrading to the Fitbit Versa 3 soon.
#7 – Set Goals & Know Your Priorities
If you’re struggling with time management, it could be that you are trying to do it all without any order.
Setting goals and knowing your priorities doesn’t have to be hard. Make a list of what you want to accomplish. Then, make a list of what’s most important to you, and put it in order from most important to least.
Knowing what you want to do and what’s most important to you, helps you prioritize in what order things need to be done. And having some kind of order keeps you from being all squirrely and jumping around from task to task without actually getting anything accomplished.
#8 – Delegate & Let Others Help
If you’re trying to do it all, all by yourself, there’s no doubt you will struggle with time management.
Listen, I know you want to do it all. You’re the best at what you do and you can do it just how you like. But there comes a point where you just can’t keep adding things to your plate or you’ll never sleep. And you’ll always feel overwhelmed.
So…make it a rule, if you add something to your plate, take something else off it.
Don’t be scared to delegate.
If you agree to take kids to practice, work it out with your spouse so he’s responsible for dinner. If you you’re asked to take on a new project at work, let another staff member finish up what you’re working on or help with the new project.
Trust me, this will save you so much stress. Stop trying to be Super Woman and do ALL THE THINGS.
#9 – Simplify, Simplify, Simplify
I can’t stress this one enough. If you’re anything like me, when it comes to doing things right, you tend to go a little overboard. You’re such an overachiever and give more than what’s actually necessary.
Know this – It’s OKAY to do the minimum. It’s okay to not over produce. Actually, sometimes it can be overkill. You just wasting time while you could be doing something else more pressing.
Good is good enough. Use that as your affirmation if you need to.
I’m not telling you to not try your best. I’m telling you to stop doing so much and letting it take from you when no one even notices those little extra bits of green onions sprinkled on top of the pasta.
#10 – Set a Timer
If you’re struggling with getting things done, it could be that it doesn’t feel pressing enough to you.
If you set a timer and give yourself a limit for how much time you can spend on a particular task, you’ll feel pressured to complete the task in that time frame.
Motivation at it’s finest.
Have you ever noticed how easy it is to procrastinate until hours before a project is due?
The timer works kind of like that. It gives you incentive and that feeling of “I gotta get this done now!” Simple, but effective when it comes to getting things done.
#11 – Don’t Forget to Take Care of Your Needs
Self-care is something many working moms tend to neglect. It’s the easiest thing to not do when you’re busy and focused on caring for those around you.
But, it’s absolutely necessary for your mental and physical health. And both of those matter when you have a giant to-do list and need to be as productive as possible.
Find time each day to do something that soothes your soul. What makes you happy?
Is it relaxing in a bubble bath after the kiddos go to bed? Is it writing in a journal to get all those feelings out? Maybe it’s reading a couple chapters of a good book before bed.
Whatever it is, make sure it makes you happy. Because when mom’s happy, everyone’s happy.
What To Do Right Now With The Best Time Management Tips
Action time… Here’s what I want you to do now for the best time management.
Make a list of these 10 Time Management Tips for Working Moms. Leave room under each item.
Then, jot down a few ideas of how you can incorporate each one into your daily routine. Nothing elaborate. Just whatever comes to mind.
Lastly, I want you to start implementing right now. Because without implementation, you won’t get any of these tips to work.
BEING A WORKING MOM IS TOUGH.
THE FACT THAT YOU’RE HERE TRYING TO FIGURE IT ALL OUT SAYS A LOT.
YOU’RE A STRONG WOMAN. YOU’RE DRIVEN AND YOU HAVE WHAT IT TAKES TO MAKE IT ALL WORK.
I BELIEVE IN YOU, AND YOU SHOULD TOO. IF I CAN DO IT WITH 3 KIDS, A FULL-TIME JOB, AND AN ONLINE BUSINESS, YOU CAN TOO!
IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, PLEASE DON’T HESITATE TO REACH OUT. I WANT NOTHING MORE THAN TO HELP YOU ACHIEVE THE BALANCE IN LIFE THAT YOU DESIRE.
WHETHER IT’S MORE TIME WITH YOUR KIDS, LESS DISTRACTIONS AT WORK, OR MORE EXCITEMENT AND TIME TO ENJOY LIFE, I’M HERE TO HELP YOU HAVE IT ALL!
Thanks for reading The Best Time Management Tips for Working Moms! Want more? Check these out!