The #1 word I hear from working moms everywhere is “overwhelmed.” The second most used word is exhausted. And, sadly, it isn’t getting better. In fact, it only seems to get worse year after year as more and more seems to be piled on our plates.
Navigating all the roles we play leaves us feeling like the ball in a pinball machine all day long. Then, at night, just as we settle in to get the much-needed rest and sleep we need, our mind kicks into full gear, thinking about all the things that didn’t get done and the stuff we hope to catch up on.
The cherry on top is the emotional luggage we carry related to our children. And if you are like me, that luggage does NOT fit in the overhead compartment, either.
With so much to juggle and organize, it is so very easy to get over-scheduled. However, I have good news. You can get over the never-ending cycle of unfinished to-do lists and middle-of-the-night list-making sessions.
Today, I want to share 2 tips you can start implementing today to get control of your calendar again and have some room to breathe and relax.
Get Control of Your Calendar with these tips
Making yes/no decisions on your time
The first and most important change is to stop using the calendar app on your mobile phone as the resource you use to make “yes/no” decisions on your time.
Let me explain with an example:
You are catching up on email from your phone on a Tuesday late afternoon while your child is at their piano lesson. An email comes through asking if you are available for a meeting Friday at 1 pm.
You switch to your calendar app on your phone and tap into Friday. You zoom in to 1 pm and see that your calendar is open.
You go back to the email and reply “yes.”
Then, later that night, you log into your computer and pull up your calendar and see that you are booked solid Wednesday and Thursday, and you just booked that one open window you had to get some stuff done on Friday. The next 3 days are slammed.
If you had seen your full calendar when that email came through, you would have answered differently.
In today’s fast-paced (and technically focused world), we are all relying on a tiny 5×7 screen size on our phone to make important decisions about our lives. We feel rushed to answer the moment a request comes in.
We simply can’t get the full picture and we end up overbooking without taking the thoughtful time or waiting until we can get a full view of our schedule.
I never say “yes” or “no” to anything unless I am looking at the full week (and sometimes month) to ensure I am not overbooking myself.
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Step into Weekly Planning
The second and most powerful change you can make is to move away from daily planning and step into weekly planning.
Instead of waking up each day and making a ridiculously long task list, working moms need to take intentional time each week to create a realistic plan for the upcoming week that includes work, personal, and family time.
We need to look at the realities of our life and determine the real “budget” we have for our time. Daily task list making just perpetuates the feeling of never-ending lists that will never get done.
For more information on what effective, realistic weekly planning looks like, download ThePinkBee app and watch my step-by-step training on weekly planning! (The app is a one-time fee.)
Megan Sumrell, professional time management and productivity coach, is here to teach women with her tips and tricks on how to ditch the feeling of being overwhelmed and find balance + harmony!
Grab her free gift: How to Ditch the Overwhelm
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