How To Make Time For Everyone
Time is a yearned for commodity in motherhood. We all dream of what we would do with it if we had more of it. It seems there is never enough time for everything we want and need to do.
After mom devotes the “have to” time to her children – the carpool, packing lunches, helping with homework, making beds, etc. – what is leftover? And, where does that time go? To herSelf? To her partner? Just thinking about allocating the few remaining minutes of her day may make mom dizzy and overwhelmed. Facebook, chocolate, and sitting on the couch watching TV – here she comes – because mom has to unwind in order to wind down from her day.
Time for Self
People who live with chronic pain must learn to put time in their day – every day – for themselves. They must devote time to their healing. It is non-negotiable. The people who are able to commit are the people who experience the best results. Moms, you too, must commit time to yourSelf. It is not open for discussion or negotiation. Your life (your sanity) depends on it. This time is to be designated on your calendar. It is to be written in pen. It is as important as a meeting with your boss. This is something you want to show up for.
You can start small. Perhaps you have to schedule it on a weekly basis, after looking at your schedule for the week and determining where there is an opening for your Self. Maybe you take your lunch break as time for yourSelf and read a book, go for a walk, or call a friend. Walk around the block while pushing your baby in the stroller. Next week, go around the block two times. Do child’s pose (yoga) for five minutes each morning before beginning your day. Meet once a month with friends.
Be creative. Be committed. Make this a habit. Start small. Grow big.
“Self-care is not self indulgence. It is about self-preservation.” - Audrey Lorde
Time for Children
Don’t we give them enough of our time already? We feed them, cloth them, bathe them, care for them… all day long. Children desire – and deserve - our undivided attention. That means turning off the phone, looking in their eyes, spending one on one time with each of your children.
This, too, doesn’t have to involve a lot of time. Have a date night with your child, just you and her. Take five minutes before each child goes to sleep for the night and talk about the day, say a special prayer, or share your daily gratitude. Call one of your children into your room and share a special treat with them. Play her favorite game. Do something special with your toddler while waiting for his older sibling at dance class.
Be creative. Snatch a moment. Put some extra love into their day.
“The most important thing you can give a child is the time you spend with them each and every day.” - Unknown
Time for Partner
The piece of life that may suffer the most after bringing children into the family is your relationship with your partner. It is the easiest to “let go of”, to take for granted, to take time away from. This relationship deserves and requires the time and attention it takes to nurture it. But, you’re exhausted. You don’t feel like it. You have too much to do. There is not enough time.
Find the time. Force yourself. You will both be better because of it.
Pursue a hobby together. Set a weekly date night – whether you go out together or stay home together. Spend time together. Be inflexible with that time. Do not give it away for something else. Find other ways to stay connected – write love notes, meet for lunch during the workday, make it a point to wrap up the day together. Enjoy morning tea together before the day begins.
“Action expresses priorities.” - Mahatma Gandhi
You can do it, mom. You can find time for yourSelf, for your children, and for your partner. Each of these relationships deserve it from you.
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