Productivity Tips for
struggling with motherhood
First, you have to have a talk with yourself and establish what exactly productive means to you. I’ve tried all of the productivity hacks for moms out there, trust me. I’ve done time blocking, I’ve set schedules, I’ve created routine after routine and so much more. I’ve tried the morning hustle, the nap time grind, and the night owl rush. They all work in their own individual ways, and some might work better for you than others, but ultimately what everything circles back to is your own definition of productivity. Productivity can’t simply be defined as “doing it all”.
Sometimes, the most productive thing you can do is UNproductive. Or seen that way. Like rest, taking care of yourself, etc. You have to have a talk with yourself and establish what exactly productivity means to you.
Setting your priorities relates back to that fundamental question of what productivity means to YOU, and jotting your priorities based on YOU. Pinterest might tell you that your home cleaning routine should be run through weekly, but come on. Do what works for you and what keeps you SANE. For myself as an example, I don’t need a constantly clean home. But I do need a tidied-up one to keep happy and keep my clumsy self out of the hospital. So on my daily to-do is a quick tidy. Nothing perfect, sparkling, and bleach clean. But it’s good enough for ME and that is what matters.
After setting your priorities comes meeting your needs at a fundamental level. In order to be productive in motherhood, you have to get some rest and eat. One of the greatest productivity tips for moms that I’ll stand by until the end of time is the necessity of basic sleep. You will burn out SO fast without it, lose your temper without it, and frankly not be an enjoyable person in life without it. If you really want to grind out what you have to do, and stay sane while doing so, you gotta rest and you gotta eat.
I start every single day (even weekends!) with my little notebook, pen, and an iced coffee. What can I say, I’m a creature of habit and that is what makes me feel like I’ve really started my day! To put my to-do list in order, I jot down everything that should happen that day. I also have a planner that I add to as events/projects/etc come up and add those as they come up. Timed events (like zoom meetings, appts, etc) I place at the top of my list and usually circle to help remind myself of the event, but aside from that it is just a simple list. I work through what I can when I can.
One of the best productivity tips for moms you’ll ever hear- train your dang kids! From the get-go, I have encouraged my twins (now 2.5) to play independently. Obviously, they can’t do everything by themselves, but things like encouraging stimulating tummy time when they’re babies or letting them go wild with kitchen utensils when they’re one, to fun backyard toys when they’re toddlers are great ways to find the time to be productive.
You can’t do it all because frankly there isn’t enough time in the day. So instead, be realistic. What CAN you do between waketime and breakfast? What CAN you do with the set amount of work time you have in a day? What CAN you do during the two-hour nap time chunk? Start by thinking about your to-do list in time chunks. How much time do that morning coffee and plan the day chunk take? Can it be easily done while the kids eat breakfast for example?