You’re going to want to bookmark this page for those days when you feel so overwhelmed you don’t know where to start. We all have a lot on our plates, and if you’re like me, it’s easy to start getting reactive. It’s all about putting out the hottest fire, and by the end of the day I’m not only exhausted, but I’ve neglected to do something that will now become a roaring fire the next day.
I like you too much to not share this with you! So check it out: The 5D Mind Dump for Busy Moms. (3D is not enough!) Grab a pen and a paper, and watch your stress begin to melt away as you regain control over your day.
Because we wear so many hats, we can often forget about important tasks that might hide behind some of the hottest fires. List out your various roles – Mom, Wife, Homemaker, Work, Volunteer, Friend. And one tip – please don’t forget to add “Personal Care.” If you don’t take care of yourself, no one else will. You deserve to be added to this list. For more thoughts on this topic, see my post UNSELFISH WOMEN PUT THEMSELVES FIRST.
Now that you have a clear snapshot of all your roles, your mind will begin swirling with all the different tasks you need to do. The purpose of this step is to get it OUT of your head so you can think clearly. Don’t worry about completing one role before you start thinking about the next one. Just let each task come pouring out, and list it under the appropriate role. This step will feel so freeing if your head feels like it’s going to explode with all that you need to do!
Take an honest look at your list. If you were to assign a time to each of the activities, you would need three full days to accomplish everything that is shouting to be done NOW. Make a conscious choice to delete things that really can wait for another day…or maybe really don’t need to be done at all. Some of this is going to slip through the cracks anyway, so take control of the situation now by choosing the right things to let go of.
Of the remaining things, ask yourself if YOU really have to be the one doing them. Just because you usually do it, like to do it, do a better job, doesn’t mean you can’t delegate to someone else. For example, yesterday I had the clarity of mind to realize that my 15-year old daughter really should be the one calling potential workplaces and printing out applications. I also realized my 10-year old is perfectly capable of starting the simple dinner I had planned. What a relief to move a few essential tasks off my plate!
Date & Time
With the list of remaining tasks, it’s time to prioritize. What absolutely MUST be done right away? And what needs to be done first? I assigned a date to each of these tasks – today, tomorrow, next week. And on the “Today” tasks, I assigned a time – while the kids are at school, after they get home, after dinner. I had chunked my chaotic, impossible day down into a few bites that I could actually do something about.
We make poor decisions when we are overwhelmed. We are reactive and stressed, and usually not much fun to be around. And most tragic, it’s easy to miss out on the really important moments, like that conversation with your teenager you almost didn’t have, snuggling with your little ones, or calling a friend and really connecting.
Leave a comment below if this helps you out. I’d love to get your feedback. I pulled out the 5D Mind Dump again today, and I felt much better once my mind was clear. I hope you do too!