1. Be intentional: set the atmosphere in your home.
Believe it or not, how things go in your home has a lot to do with you. We all have the opportunity to be the thermostats in our homes; we can set the temperature and the tone.
Where is your temperature set?
As a general rule are you frustrated and frazzled? Calm and content? Perky and fun? Rigid and no-nonsense? The general tone we sent in our home affects the entire family. This doesn’t mean that other folks don’t contribute, but as women we have the power to influence a positive or negative atmosphere in our home.
Attitude check–otherwise known as the Mom-i-tude.
If you find yourself skating on the edge of a constant blow-up mode, chances are routines and organization need a little attention in your home. Start with yourself, evaluating your own attitudes, needs, and routines. Find your happy, and then work outwards to the family.
2. Develop an As-You-Go mentality.
It is much easier to keep up with things as you go, rather than letting piles and messes build up to the disaster point. If you have to move a pile of papers to use your microwave, you are a prime candidate for this strategy.
When it comes to kitchen duty, keep soapy water in the sink to start dishwashing as you go, rather than the method below. Who wants to clean up a mess like this?
Throw away trash and put unused items away…as you go.
Keep cleaning supplies in each bathroom, so you can take a quick wipe or swipe…as you go. (Well maybe not literally, but you know what I mean.)
When you leave a room, put a couple of things away, straighten the pillows, or grab the trash…as you go. Train yourself, and your kids, to leave a room just a little better than you found it.
Paperwork and the mail–take care of it as you go. Then put it where it belongs. Make it your goal to handle a paper only one time. Open mail near the trashcan so you can ditch the junk, but don’t forget to shred any credit card applications or personal information.
See, working on this As-You-Go mentality can take you a long way to getting and staying organized.
3. Plan for Margin
Let me just confess, this one is really hard for me–hence, I truly understand the value of realistic planning. For some reason, I always think I can get more done in a given amount of time than is actually possible. I don’t have a GPS in my brain, and I seem to frequently under estimate how long it will take to go from point A to B.
Try your best not to overload your schedule and tasks for the day. I know it feels great to make this monster list of what you plan to accomplish for the day. However, if it isn’t realistic, and you only get a couple of things done… You feel like a failure at the end of the day. Been there?
Some days, we don’t have a choice. We do what needs to be done and hope for the best. But there are other days when we can use the power of planning and the ability to say “no” to keep a bit of margin in the day.
Plan realistically , then add 15 minutes as a general rule.
Make appointments with yourself to do the things that you need to do. If there is a child that you’ve been meaning to do something special with, put it on the calendar. This helps you to keep the extras in mind when scheduling things.
If we are always in catch-up or put-out-the-fire mode–the urgent things, then we will have no time or energy left for the important things. If it is important to you or to your family, plan for it…and allow a little margin to make it happen!
What is your best Stay-Sane strategy for managing your home? Don’t forget to share this post with a friend:)