One of the main hurdles you’ll have to overcome as a mompreneur is knowing how to stay productive. You’ll ask yourself how you’ll be able to fit everything you need to finish into the day and wonder whether you’ll have the time. There is nothing you can do to make time last longer. That’s why it’s vital to plan your time wisely and read carefully through our best productivity tips to help you with juggling homework, family time, meal preparation and some shut-eye into a 24-hour day. By setting up and implementing a system it can go a long way in helping you achieving time to focus on work, expanding your business and making the time spent with family more meaningful.
Implementing an evening routine
Start preparation for the day the night before. A solid evening routine may look like an uphill battle and too much to handle. But make sure you’re aiming at doing it in such a way to make your mornings less rushed and more efficient (packing lunches, loading the dishwasher, putting on a load of washing, ironing the school uniforms for the next day, etc). Think about the three things you want to accomplish the next day.
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Employing your morning routine
Set your alarm to get up at least half an hour or an hour before the kids. This will help you get into the right mindset for the day, drink a cup of coffee and prepare you for the day that lies ahead. This is your morning routine before you start taking care of the little ones and taking care of business. It can be tricky in the beginning to employ a morning routine just for yourself, but it will be well worth it in the end.
Ignoring your phone
Try ignoring the phone if possible. Just monitor your notifications if you’re expecting an important e-mail or if the preschool might be looking for you with issues relating to your kids. A phone can be quite the distraction when you’re trying to concentrate and finish a project.
Emails are another effective way of breaking your attention and taking up valuable time which can be a significant hindrance in terms of productivity. It’s not a good idea to work from your inbox. Prioritize which e-mails must get preference and look at the others when you have some time to spare or taking a break.
Getting the top three things on your list done
Remember the top three things you’ve thought about the night before that you want to complete today? Now is the time to start working on them and aim to get them finished. These are generally tasks that are directly affecting the income goals of your business, that’s why they should be prioritized.
Laundry may not seem like it can get in the way of being productive but on the contrary, if you don’t stay on top of it, it can quickly multiply and leave you feeling overwhelmed when you’re thinking about the massive mountain of laundry you need to get done. My best tip is to put a load in the night before and hang it first thing in the morning. Or you can do a load first thing in the morning, put it in the dryer, fold and put it away immediately when it’s dry. Don’t put it off till later. The best way of managing laundry is to keep working at it in between.
Setting expectations but bear in mind things can change rapidly when you’re a Mom
Despite your best efforts at planning your day or even your week, be prepared for having to put on your mom hat unexpectedly. Kids get sick or injured without prior notice and you’ll have to adopt accordingly. Thankfully you’ve chosen a career that offers you flexibility and the ability to put family life first.
Segmenting your workload
Your day is divided into different sections. Mornings, breakfast, kids at school, naps, dinner time and late evening. Some tasks can be fitted nicely into certain times more easily. For instance, try to do priority tasks during the morning when the kids are at school or preschool when you can concentrate without interruptions. And work laundry folding and packing away into the segments when food is on the stove. Finish certain tasks into the evening when it’s quiet and the kids are off to bed.
Prioritizing what goes onto your to-do-list
Moms tend to have a lot on their minds all the time. It is necessary to prioritize what goes on the to-do-list for that week and leave the brain dump list for further assessing at a more convenient time. Avoid adding things to your weekly to-do-list unless they are absolutely necessary. Instead of worrying about every little detail that needs finishing, focus on the important stuff first and then analyse when you’ll be taking care of the inconsequential issues in between. Use your judgement here to plan your time wisely and get everything done at the right time.
Quality play time rather than quantity
When you’re playing with your kids, make sure it is worthwhile. Allocate specific time for play time and make it quality time. Sometimes a half an hour or an hour of your undivided attention doing what they love doing i.e. coloring, Lego or building blocks is worth a lot more than allocating time in between with them and your thoughts are all over the place. You’ll just end up feeling guilty and kids know when mommy is distracted and not paying attention to them.
There are many ways to plan your time wisely and to work out a system that is most suited to your lifestyle. It’s not always easy to be a Mom, raising a family while running a business. But it’s not impossible. You just need to figure out what works best for you and stick to the plan, unless something happens of course. Life happens and not everything is predictable but after you’ve dealt with it, just get back into your routine. Stay forward and get it done.