Sometimes life as mom just happens to you, ya know. It feels like there are so many things, and people, they are vying for your time. That everyday is just filled to the brim. And maybe it makes you feel like you have no say in how your day goes. It just keeps on happening. When you get to that point in motherhood, you are often left feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, and possibly on the verge of feeling resentment, unhappiness, & hopelessness. I don’t think that’s how motherhood is supposed to look. And I don’t think that’s how you want it to continue. We have to figure out how we can reduce overwhelm at home. What we need to do when we become overwhelmed as mothers, is take a look at our priorities. I know it sounds accusatory when I say that, but please don’t take it that way. It’s more that there is so much going on in life when you are a mom. And that what is truly important to you, gets lost in the shuffle of it all. If you just stop to re-evaluate what’s going on and take a hard look at your priorities, you may just find that life stops happening to you. And you start to live the life that you want.
Maybe in some seasons, everything is great. You are happy, organized, and there doesn’t seem to be that crazy tornado of to-dos. But other times, when all those to-dos of life begin to take over, is when it’s time to just stop. Because it’s time to evaluate your priorities so you don’t go crazy and you are able to reduce overwhelm.
It’s important to actually write them down, with a pen or pencil onto paper. The act of writing something down on paper is more of a concrete experience versus using the notes app on your smart phone. Yes, both can be easily tossed in the trash & forgotten. But the physical note can be kept visible, while the other fades away as the screen goes black.
Now this might sound like a somewhat silly exercise. Cause you know what your priorities are and there’s no reason to list them out, right?!
Nope, you’ve got to put this in writing.
Because if you are in a place where you need help because it’s all just too much, then you have to do this. You have to reduce overwhelm. Take a few minutes and do this for yourself. And if you are up for it, do this with your husband, I guarantee it will lead to some great conversation!
for an example, Here’s my priority list:
1 – God: growing my relationship with Him and consistently praying.
2 – Family: My husband (actually dating him!) My kids (focused time on each and every one).
3 – Our Home: creating a home that is warm, welcoming, and not a source of burden to either myself, or my husband during our “downtime”.
4 – This blog: My dream is to encourage overwhelmed, frustrated, and stressed out mamas to create a home they love through simplicity & organization of the mundane tasks so they can focus on what truly matters.
Now, maybe your list is somewhat similar. but I’m sure there are other areas that are important specifically to you. Those are the things that you want to list.
If you love to workout every single day because it recharges you as a mom, then lady, that needs to be on your list! Maybe it’s important to you to find a way to contribute to your family’s income, you’ve gotta list it. Or maybe, you just need to figure out a way to manage your home more efficiently, so you stay sane. That’s important, write it down. There are of course obligations that will have to fall into your priorities, such as taking care of your kids and family. So they need to make the cut too!
Now the big question here is: What are you actually doing every day when it comes to your priorities?
Maybe you can think of this off the top of your head with no problem. But if not, a good way to figure this out is to write out your typical day. By hour, and list the tasks/activities you are actually doing during these times.
Are these things you are actually doing a reflection of your priority list?
Mine haven’t been. In fact, they’ve nearly been the exact opposite.
When you start to look at everything you do against your priority list, it helps you see where you are placing your priorities. When you have priorities, but you are not actually living those, and other distractions & noise that become a part of every day, overwhelm sets in. Maybe when you look at what you are actually doing against your list, you’ll be able to decipher what is not important to your everyday. Then those things can get weeded out to reduce overwhelm.
But if doing so is causing a shift in where you spend your time versus what you have named as priorities. Then there is a disconnect in where you are placing your priorities. And that’s when the overwhelm of doing “all the things” begins to creep in.
You may be wondering how this is going to affect you as an exhausted & overwhelmed mama? when you start to identify your actual, real, honest priorities, you can give yourself permission to let go of the things that just don’t matter. then You’ll begin to reduce overwhelm.
If having a perfectly clean home is a must for you, that’s fine. But if, at the end of the day you really don’t care, then don’t stress yourself out over having a Pinterest styled home.
I have a really hard time doing the things that re-charge me as a mom when my house is a mess. I realized if there was too much “stuff” for me to manage or clean & that managing that “stuff” didn’t leave room for what I wanted to do, then we had too much “stuff”.
And as a mother of five, it’s important that I have something that “fills my cup” or recharges me. So de-cluttering our home is a priority so that I can do those things and reduce overwhelm. We’ve chosen to not have a bunch of things (toys, decor, clothing, etc) because I don’t like cleaning & I get easily overwhelmed by all the to dos. My family time on the weekends is what is important to me, not doing dishes. So using paper plates help make that happen. I’ve identified my priorities and am now changing what I do each day so that it aligns with those priorities. And in turn, I’m starting to live the life I want. Free from stress of having to do things that aren’t truly important.