I’ve always made life difficult for myself by being a ‘yes’ person. One who has to always say YES to every opportunity that comes my way, or every request for help that is asked. This, in turn, has made my life very busy. But adding onto that a child, my own business and part-time work, now life is just chaotic. Once an organised person, motherhood has thrown everything into disarray as time slips away and gets the better of me. What I need are some time management hacks to help me get re-organised (I’ve already got a few other mum hacks up my sleeve at least!).
So I’ve decided to compile 7 Easy Time Management Hacks for busy mums, in the hopes that this will help you through your day-to-day (busy!) lives as well! x
7 Easy Time Management Hacks For Busy Mums
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1. Have 1 Must-Do Goal A Day, Followed By Smaller Can-Do Goals
The point of this exercise is to set achievable daily goals. For a perfectionist like me, I get bogged down when I feel like I’m not accomplishing anything. But setting myself one must-do goal a day, I feel a sense of accomplishment once it is completed. This then turns into motivation to keep going with my other can-do tasks for the day, and I am then more productive throughout the rest of the day. Even if your must-do goal for the day is to cook dinner or hang out the washing, you know that by the end of the day you will have achieved something.Set 1 Must-Do Goal a Day to increase your Productivity and Motivation. Click To Tweet
2. On The Weekend, Write A Daily List For The Coming Week
I am definitely a list person, as I can then write down my must-do and can-do goals for the day/week. I have a new planner, because I find pen and paper easier to manage somehow. I try to write my list for the upcoming week on the weekend so I can see what the week looks like, and I colour code my list based on my different ‘work’ areas (blog, school, home/personal, Babes + Picnics, freelance work, etc). My “Must-Do” goal is at the top of my daily list, followed by my Can-Do goals, and I tick or cross them off as I go.
3. Group Similar Tasks Together Without Becoming Monotonous
When planning out your week, or even your day, try to group similar tasks together. For example, if I need to do 3 freelance articles, a pile of washing, preparations for dinner and a blog post, I try to group the computer work together without becoming monotonous. By that, I mean I still take short breaks between my computer work, but I avoid the excess transition time between a freelance article, a load of washing, and back to a freelance article. By grouping similar tasks together – such as household chores in the morning, followed by computer work in the afternoon – I can save time I would waste transitioning from different tasks.
4. Set Aside “Free” Time
If you’re like me with many buckets to fill, it is important to “schedule” in some free/me-time amongst it all. I find that some days I am so bogged down in my list of things to do, I don’t even get much time to spend with my son (which is my main priority!!). Make it a MUST-DO goal to set aside some free time at least twice a week, even if that must-do goal is spending time with friends or going for a massage/hair appointment.
Free time is important for time management as it decreases the likelihood of procrastination, as you know you have some downtime coming up and are much more likely to remain on task to get things done.
5. Meal Planning will Save your Life
I’ve never been one for meal planning in the past, but since becoming a mum and juggling so many different ‘hats’, it has become a must. Whether it be a written meal planner on the fridge or an app or site, writing down a plan of the meals you will have during the week will save time in grocery shopping as well as daily time in deciding what to cook (or even playing around with ingredients while you’re cooking). I’m a big fan of the Foost Meal Planner (which I’ll be reviewing on the blog later this month), as I can also see what my son is getting with each meal. There are also services that send out recipes and ingredients to you to help meal planning easier, such as Aussie Farmers Direct, which I find incredibly helpful!.
6. Have a Go-To Bag for Outings
I have found a lot of time has been wasted double and triple checking that I have everything before I need to leave the house. This usually results in us being late to leave the house, or wasting time beforehand running around to get organised. Have a Go-To bag ready by your front door with all the things you need to just get out and leave the house. For me and my 13-month-old, this includes everything for changing (nappies, baby wipes, spare clothes, etc), play (hat, sunscreen, a couple of toys), and my things (wallet, keys, sunglasses). This means I am ready to leave the house at a drop of a hat, which is usually right after my son has woken up and we just get up and go.
7. Break Up Your House Into Zones
When it comes to cleaning your house (or even grouping similar tasks together), create imaginary zones in your house. These zones might look like the following:
- The Kitchen – Cooking, cleaning, and washing dishes.
- The Living Area – Vaccuming, tidying, and dusting (if you’re into that sort of thing).
- Children’s Areas (Bedrooms, Playrooms) – Tidying, vaccuming, and putting away toys.
- Your Bedroom – Vaccuming, tidying and dusting.
- Laundry – Washing and putting out clothes.
And so forth. Once you have broken up the house into zones, you can concentrate on these zones as part of your Must-Do goals for different days. For example, on Mondays I concentrate on the Children’s Areas, and that is when I would clean my son’s bedroom and organise his toys for the week. This means that it is more or less done for the week, and only involves minor tidying later on in the week. Of course, there are some zones that will need constant touch-ups throughout the week (cooking and washing dishes, washing clothes, etc), however once you have broken your house into zones and can concentrate specifically on a different zone each day, it avoids unnecessary ‘faffing’ around the house on different days – decreasing procrasti-cleaning!
So there you have it! My 7 easy time management hacks for busy mums! What is your best time management hack?
Please also share the love and share this with the mums you think will benefit from these time management hacks!
PLUS, COMING SOON: 7 Days to Organisational Success for Busy Mums (with more Time Management Hacks!)
Keep an eye out on Friday, 6th October, as I will have a new challenge coming out to help time-poor mums. If you’d like to be on the list to receive this challenge, please sign up in the box below (you’ll also receive my FREE New Mum Guide!):