Being a mom is hard. Statistics state that although men are seen to help more around the house, women still spend slightly more time on household activities than men. So whether you are a mom that works outside of the home or a stay at home mom, as any type of mom, you have more housework and chores to manage than the average man. The tasks and responsibilities of balancing housework and child rearing is draining, mentally, emotionally, and physically, especially for a mom who is introverted. In addition to managing all the responsibilities, alone time can be far and few when you work. So, in order to recharge, and be the best mom you can be, below are a few tips to help manage that “cup of love” you give to your loved ones
1. Get up Earlier
I am working on this currently. However, I have noticed, when I get up earlier than others, I have time to work on my morning routine. I do not feel rushed, hurried, or worried about forgetting something. Getting up earlier than others gives you some moments to be alone, quiet, and introspective before the morning of household management begin
2. Get a babysitter or ask someone to watch the kid(s).
My husband is very cautious when trusting others to watch our daughter, so I am working on this one too. As adults, we all have needs and other interests. Child rearing and household work can take a toll, especially as an introverted working mom, because we mostly just want to have a quiet moment to ourselves. Sometimes we just need some time to be an adult to enjoy a hobby or spend time alone.
If you can, it is important to find a trusted person to ask to watch the kid(s) every once in awhile to recharge your batteries. If you do not have money to hire a babysitter, another idea is maybe you can swap with a friend and take turns watching each other’s kids. If that friend does not have children, possibly you can swap exchange a service, such as washing their car, organizing their pantry, running some errands for them, etc.
3. Take a Day off
I am lucky in that I get what they call “flex time.” So sometimes especially when I work late hours, I am rewarded by having flex time rather than overtime pay. I use this time to be in solitude, usually by reading a book. I know some people say that may not be able to afford to take a day off because they need to save days in case their child(ren) get sick. However, if you can, I highly suggest it. If you can take a day off while the children are at daycare or at the babysitter, it is a wonderful way to recharge your batteries. (Now don’t go using your day off to do more chores or housework! I am guilty of it, so yes I know..
4. Get out of Work early
The same goes for #3, I know some people do not have the flexibility or cannot afford to get out of work early, but if you do have an opportunity, try! For example, if you can go to work earlier than usual, and leave a little early (as long as it is allowed!), then I suggest this as well. When I leave early, I use some time to just recharge before I go and pick up my daughter from daycare
5. Implement systems that take away the need to decide or plan
I try to utilize this often, especially in meal planning. Every Thursday we order pizza (we have a coupon code for Thursday evenings) and every Wednesday is meatless.
This tip is important because there is only so much time to manage household chores and taking care of children after and before work. By implementing systems, you are more efficient and effective. This streamlines processes, and reduces time which would have been spent making decisions , and increasing time doing something else (like pampering yourself!
6. Schedule ME time at least once a week
I am lucky that my husband and I take turns putting my daughter to sleep. When it is his turn to put her to bed, I use this time for self care. I usually spend time reading before bed, meditate, and journal so I can recharge for the next day.
As busy moms, it is important to schedule time for yourself if you do not already. Even if you spend some time alone after the kids are in bed, that little bit helps.
7. Utilize Naptime
This one is my favorite one! On weekends, I CHERISH naptime. Thankfully, my daughter still takes naps! While she naps, I use that time to either read or blog. I use this precious time to refill my emotional tank each week. Truthfully, I used to feel guilty about using naptime for myself, when there was always a ton of housework to do, but I have gotten used to the idea that my time is important or I would be more prone to snapping or being more tired mentally and emotionally.
In order to be an effective mom, it is all about capitalizing on whatever free time you have to work on yourself. Even if your child no longer naps, train your child to have quiet time where they play by themselves, and you can use this time to recharge.
8. Utilize the TV or phone
I am guilty of this and I deep down, I wish that my daughter didn’t watch as much tv as she did, but it is when I am able to get household things done such as washing dishes, cooking, or even doing laundry. I know that I only have so much time to get things done, and I have to be realistic with my time and what can help me work faster. I make up for this by spending uninterrupted time with her on weekends, painting, going to the library, doing errands, building puzzles, etc. As the saying goes, QUALITY time, not Quantity time.
9. Be Gentle with yourself!
I used to feel so guilty on Saturdays when my husband would come home from work, and the house did not look any cleaner than earlier that day. It took me years to figure out that he did not even mind, as much as I did! I learned that my guilt came from expectations I had on my own self, and that it came from childhood. I was socialized to think what I thought was normal, what was expected as a mom/wife. Instead, I had to challenge what I was socialized to think, and to understand that my ability to do housework was not all of who I was as a wife and mother.
If you are feeling overwhelmed as an introverted working mom, hopefully some of these tips resonate and you can use them.
Sending you love and light on your journey,