When Tuesday morning rolls around, I strap the kids in the stroller, and make a loop around the neighborhood, while I listen to a favorite podcast of mine: Family Looking Up. Sometimes, when I relate the highlights of the weekly episode to my husband, I slip up and say, “I was talking to—” Oh, no, wait. I was just listening to my podcast… but these three wonderful ladies have that effect. You will laugh until you drop, so, please, check it out.
A few weeks ago, the guest speaker was none other than The Happy Gal‘s, Jenny Layton, and a few things she brought up really resonated with me.
The Time/Energy Bank Account
The Time/Energy Bank Account is the idea that, as Jenny puts it, “We all have what we have, and we have to make it work.” From the mom of young kids, to the empty nester, to the working mom or dad, our time and energy levels are different! A little self-examination follows then: Are you aware of and spending that time in the best way you know how? Are you saving your A+ energy for the things that matter most?
Work/Home Life Triage
Part of the way Jenny suggests we do this, is to create a daily routine for the tasks we know to expect, such as laundry and meals, in order to avoid putting out unnecessary fires later. However, if/when the time arrives to put out fires, she advises asking yourself these two questions.
- Is this someone else’s responsibility?
- Does this really need to be done right now?
Take advantage of teaching opportunities.
That first question really struck a chord within my mama heart. As a mother, I all too often end up with anxiety over taking on the whole world for my kids. I don’t want to see them hurt, but I also recognize the need to allow them to experience consequences and responsibility for their actions while the stakes are low! The only way my children grow into capable adults that others want to be around is if I let them tackle their own problems— especially while I am still around to cheer them on. Furthermore, my kids need to know that Mom makes an effort to take care of herself, and that is okay. Freeing ourselves from enough guilt to ask the question, Can someone else do this?, leads to so many incredible teaching opportunities. As an added benefit, when we answer yes!, our kids sense our belief in them, and gain a greater belief in themselves as a result.
So give yourself permission this week to free up your plate, and focus on the things that matter most to you.
Here’s to whatever that may be, and to my sweetheart and kids (who matter most to me).