Often social media overwhelms me. I scroll through my feeds and it feels like this continual unspoken pressure to be all things bombarding me. Spend more time with your kids. Lose more weight. Make your home more beautiful. Travel more. Read more. Volunteer more. Save more money. Spend money more wisely. Socialize more. Spend more time with God. Be a better person. Clean more. Cook more. Exercise more. Have a fulfilling career. Do more work that matters.
Do more and be more are the mantras of today. I honestly can’t tell you how many times I have collapsed in bed at night in a puddle of tears lamenting to my husband that I just can’t do it all.
I have known the truth all along, but I have finally come to terms with the truth. Nope! I absolutely can not do it all, and get this. No one is expecting me to…except me. Pesky little me that puts unneeded pressure on myself to be this type of mother/wife/human being that doesn’t even exist.
Seriously, show me someone that truly does it all. I don’t know anyone. Oh yes, maybe you know a celebrity, internet personality, or even a blogger that you think does everything plus runs a successful home based business. I will show you a person that pays many people to do many of those things that you are trying to do by yourself. They may have a nanny, have someone clean and organize their home, get groceries delivered, have a team of contract employees, have someone design their products, etc. You get the idea. Not that any of those things are bad things. It’s just that everyone and I mean everyone has to pick and choose their priorities.
For a working mother, it may mean that they need to hire someone to clean their home. For a stay at home mom, it may mean that they have to pinch a few more pennies than their working friends. Maybe your priority is getting into shape and so you will invest in a gym membership but have to say no to something else. The point is, you can’t be all things all of the time. There just aren’t enough hours in the day.
I have finally narrowed down my priorities. These are things that I do most of the time. Yes even some of the things on my priority list don’t get done on some days when everything goes crazy, but most days they do. These are the choices that I personally have made. Maybe they aren’t the ones that you have made and that is a-okay.
Things I Do…Most of the time 🙂
1. Homeschool my children
Our routine: We do our morning routine, copywork, read aloud, complete a math lesson, read our history spine, and whatever our extra rotation is for the day (writing, spelling, science, literature, etc). Foreign language, social studies, and art are done at co-op and we fill in the gaps at home. She follows her own interests in her own time by maybe learning to draw through YouTube or learning to label the states.
2. Cook at home most nights.
Mostly quick dinners, slow cooker meals, or Instant Pot. See recipes here. I don’t have time for the fancy or complicated. We like simple best.
3. My bare minimum daily cleaning routine
This is not a complicated plan. It’s my bare minimum run through the house routines that keep our home livable but not spotless. Here are our five routines.
4. Work from home part-time
Yup, my two blogs are my part time gigs.
5. Invest in myself and my husband semi-regularly
I have to bring back some sanity in my life and keep filling my cup. This includes reading (Bible, fiction, non-fiction), date night, going for a walk, ladies night out with friends. It doesn’t happen daily or sometimes not even weekly, but I do find times to recharge throughout the month.
Things I don’t d0
There are plenty of things that I don’t do. These are things that aren’t on my priority list at the time in my life. If they are on your to-do list, go you! I am not saying these things are bad. I’m just saying they aren’t for me and my family in this particular season. Maybe they will one day again. We can have different priorities and still be a-okay. Here’s a sampling of things that I don’t do.
1. Make everything from scratch.
I don’t make bread, yogurt and several other things that I used to make from scratch anymore. I don’t make all of my own cleaning products anymore. I don’t make all of my own beauty/personal care products anymore. I just don’t have the time and energy anymore. There I said it. I do still buy clean products that other people have made, and I call it a day.
2. Do elaborate hands-on projects & crafts with my kids.
I just can’t folks. I just don’t have it in me. My kids are perfectly happy with having access to paints, paper, and craft tools that they can create pieces on their own, but they are no longer lead by me. It’s just not my thing anymore.
3. Watch over my children constantly
Kids need space and so does mama. I don’t hover. They play outside by themselves. They play by themselves inside as well. We do family game nights and activities together, but not constantly.
4. Host huge elaborate themed birthday parties.
I love looking at pictures of adorable birthday parties that look professionally done, but they don’t happen in this house. We do pizza parties. We invite a few friends over. We eat. The kids play. We open presents. The end. I don’t coordinate games. I don’t do a lot of decors. Everyone is still happy.
5. Go to the gym
This is just not the season for a rock hard bod for me. Truthfully I don’t know that it ever will be. I enjoy being active but I don’t enjoy “working out”. Walking, dancing and hiking are more of my styles. I love eating good food, and yes including those with fat, carbs, and even sugar from time to time. There is always so much pressure for moms to lose weight after giving birth, I completely understand that some moms want to feel good about themselves, and why shouldn’t they! They have a Mommy Makeover in Philadelphia for moms who want to have cosmetic surgery done. If this is something that appeals to you then go for it! It’s your body, your rules, check your local area for any cosmetic surgery centers near you.
6. Do fancy hairdos for myself or my daughter
Most of the time my daughter does her own hair. AKA she brushes it…sometimes. We get really wild around here.
7. Deep clean regularly.
See above for my cleaning routine. I just do the daily folks. Deep cleaning doesn’t happen often. I clean as needed and deep cleaning happens a couple of times a year.
8. Entertain my kids.
I used to feel the pressure to constantly keep my kids busy, but something changed over time. I now feel no need to entertain my children. They are perfectly capable to use their imaginations to take them to way more exciting places than my entertaining could do. I am considering looking into outdoor play sets for my children so that they have more options to entertain them as they get older. It’ll also encourage them to get outside and in nature more.
9. Wait on my children.
I purposely designed and organized my home where my kids could do most things themselves. They can reach all of their glasses, plates, forks and spoons, snacks, clothing, toothbrushes and toothpaste, etc. They can get their own water and make themselves a simple snack. They enjoy the independence. I enjoy not having to fetch them a drink a million times a day.
10. Dress my children in designer clothing.
Ninety percent of my children’s clothing are hand-me-downs and most of the time they pick out their own outfit for the day. Again I love browsing through pictures of adorably dressed children, but it’s just not one of our priorities. I have become perfectly content with an outfit that doesn’t quite match.
11. Make fancy lunches for my children.
Most days it’s leftovers or a simple sandwich with fruit. Simple and done.
12. Spend loads of time creating a thriving online business.
I dream of creating a business that supports our family, but at this season in my life, I have chosen to work very part time hours. Maybe one day that will change, or I will be able to hire more work out, but now is not that time, and I am content with it. A part time income is great for me and our family right now.
My point is, it’s ok to let some things go. It’s ok to pick a few things that are your priorities and say no to the rest. We are all in different seasons of life. There is no medal for trying to take on everything, so there’s no sense in stretching yourself thin by trying to do it all. No one does. No one is expecting you to be everything. Breathe.
What are some things on your priority list? What are some things you just don’t do? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!