I’m a mom of two preschoolers. And while I realize that is not particularly unique nor does it mean I am an expert on home organization, it does mean I am perhaps…like you. Maybe you, like me often find yourself motivated to change only to end up frustrated, exhausted and sad.
Life with little kids has huge perks. Like snack time and naps, oh yeah, and the sweet love. But it also has its challenges. So many parents I have talked to laugh at the question: “What do you do for fun?” Because, isn’t something we like to do supposed to be something we do often? In this phase of life many of us find ourselves spending every second of our time focused on our kids and homes. So much that we’ve forgotten what it was that we did like to do, you know before kids.
Where is this elusive time for anything we enjoy? I know I didn’t see it. Anywhere. And if I made a well-intended goal to squeeze some “me” time in, something inevitably would come up and ruin it…and my attitude along with it. (Just tell me “you can’t pour from an empty cup” one.more.time. I dare you!).
Defeated time after time, I just gave up.
I’ll start on those projects, read that book, run that marathon, cook that meal, host that party…when the kids are older. Until then I’ll just sulk about the life I wish I had, but don’t. Even though other people seem to be able to do it, there just must be something wrong with me. I must be naturally lazy or disorganized or unmotivated. That’s it. I’ll get a book on motivation, that I won’t read, because I don’t have time. Meanwhile I’ll sit on my couch holding my fussy toddler, scrolling through Instagram while eating brownies and feel sorry for myself.
No matter what, there are limitations to life with littles. Some dreams that will just have to wait a little while. But certainly not all of them. I wanted to enjoy my life with them, not in spite of them. I knew my thinking had to change first, then the behavior would follow.
So I made a list, (like all good SAHM’s do). I listed everything that frustrated me in my current situation.
It went something like this:
- I’m tired at the end of the day, and feel like I have accomplished nothing.
- By bedtime I’m so wired that I can’t relax.
- I’ve tried for years to lose 25lbs and have never been able to lose more than 10.
- I don’t have any time for myself (and if I did, I honestly wouldn’t know how to use it in a way that would really count – so I won’t even try to find it).
- Despite my best efforts, my house is a cluttered mess most of the time.
- I want to spend quality time with my kids, but I often find myself just scrolling through social media and brushing them off instead of giving them my undivided attention.
- I want to have quality friendships, but feel like I am a bad friend because I go so long without talking to, let alone visiting, some of my dearest friends.
- I would like to spend more time in prayer and reading my Bible, but can’t seem to stick to a regular quiet time.
- The pile of books I’d like to read is depressing.
- I feel like I haven’t learned, or accomplished anything that was intellectually or creatively challenging in ages and my brain is slowly dying (dramatic? maybe.)
You get the idea…any of that resonate?
But I didn’t want to stop there. Stopping there would just be whining, playing the martyr and that’s not who I want to be (because that’s who I’ve been). I could justify each and every one of those frustrations, and I’ll bet you can too, but that won’t change a thing. So, along with identifying my frustrations, I decided to identify some solutions to try. I figured if I was able to eliminate even one of those from my list…it would be worth it.
Welcome to my journey. This should be fun!