I’ve been a mother since I was 20 years old so it’s safe to say that having kids around me while trying to accomplish a million other things such as doing groceries, working on a project, cooking, working out, starting a business, cleaning and starting all my endeavors have been while I had my children around. In other words, I had no other option. However, through all of that, I have learnt how to balance many things in life not just business or motherhood but how to balance ME.
Let’s Talk Logistics
Days are hectic and always crammed with a million things to do. The night before Hubby and I sit down and work out logistics once the kids are in bed. Who’s dropping who and who’s picking up who. This helps us out a lot and helps me plan the rest of my day.
Once logistics are done, I also think of what I will cook the next day. I usually defrost my protein the night before and if I have last minute items to pick up from the grocery store I grab it on my way home or tell the hubby. If I don’t have a general idea of what I’m making the next day I realize I have a very anxious and incomplete night lol. As long as I know what protein I’m cooking I can wing the rest.
I decided when I had started my Blogging journey that I will not let my social endeavor affect or take over my life. And thankfully it hasn’t. I dedicate an hour or two depending on my project or my content almost every night, only once the kids have gone to bed. One of my goals going into 2017 is to limit my electronics time and spend more quality time with my family. I have all my notifications turned off for Instagram so this way it doesn’t distract me in the evenings when I’m with the kids. I realized that reaching for your phone is merely a habit and if you put it far away from you, it will break that habit. My phone is usually on vibrate so it’s not always going off the hook and because I already have a scheduled time for Instagram I just stick with it. Sometimes I try my best to leave my phone in my bedroom while I’m downstairs in the living room or put it to charge further away from me so it’s not accessible. With that being said I do not neglect my social media either. I just find ways to balance it. I do all my posting, engaging and socializing at night. When I started the Blogging thang in January I was actually spending almost 2 hours a night engaging with other ‘grammers and building online relationships. Consider it a job and be consistent and it will pay off. It takes time but I promise you it will come. Don’t become obsessed and trust me to keep your sanity by having control, or it can easily take over your life.
With three kids and a big family on my husband’s side also comes a lot of get-togethers and birthdays parties, Anniversaries etc. There is not one weekend that goes by where we don’t have anything to do. My husband has dedicated me as The Planner which helps a lot because he runs everything by me before confirming anything and this way things don’t overlap. We also have my son’s hockey every weekend both Saturday and Sunday and we plan everything around that. This all sounds like a lot but it’s so normal to me that in fact, I don’t even notice it anymore. My husband is a firefighter which means that his schedule is written down a year in advance, I have a copy on my phone whenever I’m planning something I just take a look at his schedule and plan around it. Plan those double dates, play dates etc in advance.
I learned this from my mom and probably the most helpful idea/solution ever. When I see things on sale and I mean discounted heavily such as kids toys, clothes, household items I buy it and store it. I have a large bag in my linen closet with gifts for days. This helps alot because it actually saves you money in the long run and you don’t need to panic when you have last minute gift givings. I also re-gift. There is nothing wrong with that. If you get things that you won’t use, instead of having it in the house use it to give to someone who will. It avoids hoarding and will make you happy that someone is making use of it.
I usually shoot once or twice a month with my photographer. It took me a while to find someone I can trust and work with consistently but now that I have one, I schedule my shoots a week or two in advance. I build my content a month in advance so I’m never out of content. Juggling last minute projects are always tough but I manage to squeeze them in somehow. Once you make this routine as a blogger it will simply your blogging journey.
Luckily I work for myself and unlucky that I have to do everything no matter what day or time it is. The good thing about my business is that it’s done between work hours so my weekends and evenings are free and if I have to work past that which does happen, I do it once the kids are in bed. I manage and run a boutique style Recruitment Firm if you are wondering what I do. I’ve been a business owner for the last 6 years of my life and thankfully my business is mobile which means I can work from anywhere although I do go to the office every day.
Balancing my business comes with a lot of help from my husband. We have a solid understanding and expectations in place for our relationship and how we plan to achieve our goals together. And that means we both have to balance each other out. If work is busy for me, he picks up the kids, preps dinner and does all the errands, If he is busy then I pick up the ball. He also helps me with the day to day household chores not because I’ve asked him to but because he knows that is the only way we will have a healthy and balanced life. I got lucky with this guy! If I cook, he does the dishes and usually does the dishes anyways! hahaha he is kind of OCD and thinks that I don’t know how to load the dishwasher properly hahaha. He also makes lunch and snacks for the kids if I’m exhausted and tired or sick. Both our chore delegation are very old school meaning he does all the manly things in the house such as shoveling, garbage, fixing things, and I take on the cooking, cleaning, laundry etc.
Both hubby and I try to sit down once a week and TALK. This is very important and we learnt this the hard way. Communication is key. Plus knowing that we have to sit down and talk eliminates built up tension and opens the doors to developing a stronger bond with each other. We go over our days in detail, we also talk about things that are bothering each other, most of the time we are good:) We talk about house rules because we don’t see eye to eye on that chapter and it makes it hard to parent sometimes. We both decide what the other person will take on and go from there.
Take Care of US
I do my best to make sure he is happy, he is fed and he has his own time. It’s important to give a man his space. If we get into fights, we both always say sorry, and if sometimes he doesn’t then I do. We end fights quickly and don’t hold on to things for too long. My husband is not the planner so instead of getting upset at the things he doesn’t do like planning date nights, or vacations etc I just take that on myself. He loves doing everything I plan so it kinda works out perfectly because I never get any push back and I get to be in control hahaha. For the first year or two I would always pick little fights about why he doesn’t plan things, or make reservations for dinner or go to the mall to buy things then I realized at all the things he does for me and the kids and decided to change the way I looked at things. Every man loves differently and I found out the way he loves. Since then life’s been pretty good:)
Write it down!
As many of you know I also have a lot of passions in life. I’ve realized that everything is about Balance. If you write down your goals and things you want to accomplish it will make a HUGE difference in your life. I literally write down all things to be done on a daily basis as well as goals to be accomplished within the long run. I have yet to write down my goals for 2017 but I plan on tackling that this week.
I’m still working on this but I use to worry about everything all the time. I would get anxiety attacks also known as panic attacks, worry if the kids ate, if they got home from school, if the dishes were done, if hubby is okay and the list goes on….the truth is I drove myself nuts. My husband sat me down and looked me in the eye and said you will worry yourself to death! And that’s the truth. Worry does nothing! absolutely nothing so I decided to break up with Worry and get with Happy. He is much nicer:)