Life as a working parent could mean being stuck in a cycle of guilt, lateness, exhaustion and always feeling like you’re living life on the back foot. Or with a bit of thought, intention and planning, you could feel more in control, organised and positive.
It’s all about, intention, forethought and teamwork.
Here are just 3 things you can do to make a huge difference to your day to day life.
Make a list of all the household jobs that need to be done to keep family life ticking over. This list might include:
- Unloading the dishwasher
- Putting the bins out
- Dealing with dirty laundry
- Dealing with clean laundry
- Cleaning the bathroom
- Making the packed lunches
- Preparing a food menu
- Taking the dog walk
- Feeding the dog
Hold a family meeting to discuss the change in circumstances now you are working, if your children are young then just sit down with your partner. Share the list above and add to it collectively if needed. Together see if you can share out these jobs agreeing when they will be done and by whom. Defining roles and responsibilities really helps to get things done amicably and fairly.
2. Give Everything A Place
Make sure everything has a place in your home and that the chosen place is logical, keeping it where the item is actually used most. From school bags to swimming kits, dirty laundry to dog food – give them all a place and make sure everyone in the family knows where everything belongs. This way everyone can take responsibility for keeping the home in order.
Resist any feelings of guilt about doing this, it is good for children to have responsibilities, preparing them for the future. When life is busy you might need to have regular family tidy ups, (using music to add fun and before TV time works best) and when everyone knows where everything belongs it is so much easier. When your children are young take the time to begin teaching them how to do tasks around the house. Initially teaching a young child how to load their plate and cutlery into the dishwasher, sort their laundry into colours or pack away their toys properly takes both time and patience but in the long run it will pay off, saving you time and giving them valuable skills for their future independence.
3. Plan A Weekly Menu
To really conquer this area, I suggest having a two-week rolling program of meals that you stick to, tweaking them to allow for any changes that occur. You can have a set shopping list, ready-made to go with each week that again you can adjust as needed. You could try batch cooking and using a slow cooker so that meals are ready when you walk in. (See downloadable menu planner pdf on Fiona's website).
Above all else, if you truly want to free yourself from the never-ending housekeeping demands, I recommend simplifying everything you do, everything you own and everything you allow into your lives.
In this busy world we find ourselves in today, we must intentionally choose to slow down and be realistic about what we say yes to and what we don’t. If we say yes to too many commitments we may be saying no to ourselves.
Take the time to get in touch with yourself and your values and let that be your guide, rather than the external messages of society telling us we must be, do and have in order to be happy.
To find out more about how to simplify your home, visit Fiona's website or if you’d like to find out more about how she can help you personally, simply email her: firstname.lastname@example.org
By Fiona Bennett at www.simplifyyourhome.co.uk