I’m a work-from-home, homeschooling mother of two. My days are filled with curricula, activities, meals, writing, and if I can fit it in, cleaning. For a long time I had a really difficult time juggling home life and work and homeschooling. I still have days when I feel overwhelmed, but luckily they aren’t as frequent as they used to be. If you are in a similar boat, I’d like to share with you a few things that have made my days easier to navigate.
Make a schedule and stick to it. Before I did this, I was a mess. I was forgetting work I was supposed to do and emails that needed to be responded to. I burned dinner and forgot key ingredients when I went shopping. Multitasking is great, but not when you’re trying to do way more than humanly possible. Instead of doing one thing well, I was doing lots of things poorly. And the biggest problem of all was that my kids were falling behind in school. That’s when I realized something had to give, so my solution was to put myself on a strict-ish schedule. I gave myself “office hours” just as if I were leaving every day to a job outside of my home. It’s taken a little bit of adjustment, but now I’ve blocked out time so that on school days, I’m focused on teaching my kids and not responding to emails in between subjects. To create the schedule, I simply sat down and made blocks of time and assigned them activities to complete. Then I hung up this schedule on my wall next to my computer so I don’t forget and can remain as true as possible. It takes some tweaking at the beginning, but eventually you find a good schedule that works for you.
Prioritize your goals. While putting together my schedule, I blocked out the most important time periods, such as school time and writing time. They take place at different times of the day and everything else fits in around them since they are my high-priority activities.
Being flexible is critical. Just because you’re on a schedule doesn’t mean you should be rigid. Life is dynamic and we have to be ready to roll with it to be successful. Especially when it comes to kids. Sickness, last-minute invitations, impromptu picnics, unexpected visitors, all of these happen. And in the end, while their education certainly takes priority in our home, it’s important to remember that people always come first. And nurturing relationships are important for building a future support system.
Don’t sweat the small stuff. The final lesson I’ve had to learn is that not everything is going to get done in a day, and that’s okay. Those little things will still be there tomorrow, and if they don’t get done, I just think about the things I did accomplish and when I compare the two, it is easy to put things into perspective.
How do you juggle everything that needs doing in your day-to-day life?