Time management is incredibly important for moms because this allows you to stick to your schedule and tick off all the things you need to get done in a day (boy do those to-do lists seem never ending!). Sticking to your schedule isn’t easy. You need to be motivated enough, have the self discipline and try to be efficient with your time to make full use of the hours each day. Here are some tips on how you can get more stuff done.
Table of Content
- 1 1. Get up early
- 2 2. Get dressed for the day – whether you’re going out or not
- 3 3. Write up a list of tasks
- 4 4. Schedule, Plan and Divide
- 5 5. Get yourself a soundtrack
- 6 6. Be mindful of the time
- 7 7. Don’t be too much of a control-freak
- 8 8. Don’t spend too much time cleaning every mess
- 9 9. Cut the clutter
- 10 10. Keep things moving
- 11 11. Avoid distraction
- 12 12. Have a break
- 13 13. Watch what you eat
- 14 14. Figure out your best work hours
1. Get up early
This doesn’t mean that you have to get up early and immediately work on the tasks you have for the day. Instead, getting up early has a lot to do with prepping yourself for the day. Start slow, take a shower, eat your breakfast, drink your coffee and just prepare for your day. This will help your mind prepare for the tasks at hand without introducing stress this early in the day. Many entrepreneurs swear by this 24-minute morning routine.
2. Get dressed for the day – whether you’re going out or not
This one’s for stay home/work at home moms. Some days, I find myself in my PJs at noon because I skip the whole getting ready and just dive straight in to work. Why not, right? Since I might not even have the intention to set foot outside today.
Getting dressed for the day though can help in prepping your mind as well. Even if you work from home, take some time to dress properly, even put on some make up so you feel that little bit more ‘professional’. It helps you get down to work more efficiently. Also, if there’s a surprise visitor or a sudden dash to the supermarket, there’s no need to waste time later and get this done in a rush.
3. Write up a list of tasks
This is almost a no-brainer but it still has to be included without a doubt. Create a list of tasks you need to get done for the day, putting the most important ones at the top of the list. This way, you won’t have to stress about important things being forgotten. If you can, do this the night before. Spend 15 minutes writing this list up to help you start the day knowing what needs to be done exactly.
4. Schedule, Plan and Divide
Writing a list of tasks is just one part. You need to schedule them to ensure you actually follow through.
Plan out your appointments, activities, events for the week. Divide tasks among your own family. Here’s where kids doing chores come in handy! Don’t take on everything yourself and ask what can be ‘outsourced’ to your kids.
5. Get yourself a soundtrack
Just because you’re working on your chores doesn’t mean you can’t have fun in the process. It has been proven that playing upbeat music or your favourite songs while working on something helps give you more energy to finish the task the same way it works for someone doing some cardio in the gym. Sometimes, that little boost of music can be just the thing to put the spring in our step.
6. Be mindful of the time
When planning tasks, make sure you include an estimate of how much time you are to complete a task. Avoid underestimation or overestimation. Giving yourself less time to complete what you need to do can stress you out whereas giving yourself too much time will lead you to put things off. It is best to time yourself when doing little tasks so you get a good idea what tasks can be squeezed in between phone calls. A little tip: avoid Facebook unless it is time to relax!
7. Don’t be too much of a control-freak
It’s good to be meticulous but paying too much focus on miniature details will only be a waste of time and energy. What’s important is that things get done within the timeframe you allocated. Don’t stress about any other minute detail!
8. Don’t spend too much time cleaning every mess
Doing household chores may be a bit messy but you don’t have to clean up after every single one. Instead, devote a clean-up time towards the end of the day so you can focus on ticking every task you have on your list and stick to the schedule.
9. Cut the clutter
It’s difficult to be productive or even navigate around the house if clutter is everywhere. Additionally, clutter makes your house look messy even if it isn’t and it makes you feel more unorganized. Learn to declutter your house. Throw away the things you don’t need while put those you want to keep in storage boxes. Don’t forget to label them and put them away.
10. Keep things moving
When you’re about to finish one task, make sure that you know what you’re going to do next. This is why you have a schedule. It’s important that you keep things moving yet be mindful not rush things. I find that once I let myself stop, my momentum gets interrupted and it’s very hard to get going again. Stop for breaks now and again by all means but when things are moving, keep it going!
11. Avoid distraction
The most distracting thing these days are our mobile phones. Every once in a while it makes a sound hinting at a new email received, a text message, a phone call or a notification on Facebook. It can be tempting to check these out even when you’re in the middle of completing a task so you might as well put your phone away and take it out once it’s time to relax.
Block out periods of time to complete your tasks and during those periods, be very strict to not allow any distractions at all. I tell my husband and children when I’m sitting down at work for a 25 minute block and they respect that. (Of course, that’s a little harder with younger children but worth a try to explain still)
12. Have a break
Working so hard can be stressful, which is why you need to take short breaks after completing several tasks. It is suggested that you take breaks lasting from 15-30 minutes to allow your body and mind to relax. With this time, you can either take a nap, read a book or do something relaxing. Just don’t forget to watch the time. Did you know that having a break can actually increase your productivity?
13. Watch what you eat
Try to avoid sugary foods for breakfast because these will give you an energy boost early on but it will slowly wear off once your body absorbs the sugar. Instead, go for wholegrains and spread out your meals throughout the day. Don’t forget to drink at least 1.6-2 litres daily to avoid feeling lethargic.
Giving your body the right fuel will help you complete your tasks and keep going for the day.
14. Figure out your best work hours
Each of us work best at various hours. It’s important that you make the most out of this time because it’s a given that your work rhythm won’t be at its peak throughout the day. Do the most important tasks during these hours and do the smaller tasks when your work rhythm is ebbing.
There you go – 14 hacks to get more done today! What other productivity tips do you have to suggest?