life is busy

5 Important Reasons Life is Busy for Working Moms

There are countless reasons why life is busy for working moms. We are pulled in a million different directions and often feel like we can’t win. We juggle work and family responsibilities, we feel like we never have enough time for anything, and we often put our own needs last. We try to prioritize our rest, but life keeps getting in the way. This can lead to a lot of stress and anxiety.

And in that stress and anxiety, we are unable to be our best selves, nor are we able to care for those we are responsible for well. In this blog post, I want to discuss some of the reasons why life is so busy for us and offer encouragement to let go of those things and embrace a simpler lifestyle.

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The problem with a busy life

If you ask any mom what her week looks like, 9 out of 10 will tell you its busy. Busyness has become almost like a calling card for motherhood nowadays. From children’s activities, to managing the household, moms everywhere are getting things done!

We are ticking off to-do lists like it’s an Olympic sport, and for many, this constant doing may appear to be a good thing. You’re getting things done, so this should be good right?

Wrong!

One of the biggest misconceptions when it comes to productivity is the idea that doing several tasks correlates to being highly productive. The problem with this thinking is it does not take into account the fact that productivity and busyness are different.

Busyness is all about working through a to do list, no matter what is on the list. It values the act of action. Productivity on the other hand is all about doing tasks that propel you forward towards your goals. Productivity is intentional action.

In other words, busyness is about filling up your time with tasks whether or not they are important. Productivity on the other hand, is about being selective with your time and only doing things that matter. When you live life based on productivity, you’re living a life of purpose and meaning.

Productivity also prioritizes intentional inaction. That is prioritizing rest! Productive people get meaningful tasks completed and then are able to spend their free time in a way that invites their version of rest.

Reasons why life is busy

So why is it so hard for us to prioritize rest and productivity? Well, there 5 main reasons that are based in limiting beliefs we have about busyness. These beliefs keep us moving and keep us on the track of a busy lifestyle instead of one that cultivates calm and prioritizes rest.

Are you guilty of one of these 5 reasons life is busy??

Fear of missing out

The dreaded FOMO, one of the main reasons many of us find it hard to rest. The fear of missing out on something keeps us glued to our devices, scrolling through social media and seeing all the amazing things everyone else is doing. We feel like we are falling behind and that if we don’t keep up we will miss out on life.

This fear creates a sense of urgency in our lives and a need to always be doing something. What this also creates is a life that is built on striving for the next thing instead of being content and present in the moment. It completely ignores the many blessings that you have in this moment and the way you are rocking it in life, in your own way!

Obligations

There are always going to be things we HAVE to do. Those are not the obligations I am speaking about here. The obligations that I want to discuss are those that we make or maintain without first consulting the time and energy we have available.

Many mothers, myself included, suffer from the need to do all the things For some it’s a minor micromanaging personality but for others it may be a sense of obligation. Whether its your job, coworkers, extended family or even obligations with your kids and spouse, its okay to say no to events and activities. This leads us into the next reason we live a busy lifestyle.

Unclear boundaries

For some of us, life is busy because we do not have clear boundaries. We have not taken the time to assess what we need for rest and health stewardship. Instead, we leave rest as an optional task on our to do list. We have to stop living this way.

Healthy boundaries give our life a sense of order. They create a boundary between what is me and what is not me. When we have clear boundaries, it becomes easier to say no to things that do not serve us. It also creates an understanding for those around us that when we are busy, there are limits to how much we can do.

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Perceived value of tasks to others

How many times have you made a decision for yourself, or your family based on the value that a friend placed on the task? For example, maybe you have 100% decided that your children cannot eat leftovers. So, every day after work, you prepare a brand-new meal. You don’t necessarily have time to cook a new meal nightly, but your friend’s passion on the topic was contagious.

This is a common example of increasing your busyness because of the values of others. As mothers, we struggle a lot with comparison, so I know it can be hard to see what you believe to be perfection in another mom and not want to try to give that goodness to your babies.

I need to encourage you here with this thought, you are the exact mom your children needed. The values that are essential to who you are were made to shape them into all that they will be. So do you, mama!

Unrealistic expectations

This reason goes hand in hand with the last, and it’s the unrealistic expectations of motherhood. Working moms are expected to-do it all. We are expected to have a job, be the perfect wife, take care of the kids perfectly, cook amazing meals nightly and keep our house clean at all times.

This is just not possible! And expecting ourselves to do this only leads to frustration and busyness in our life. It’s time for us to embrace more realistic expectations for ourselves and our families. Your motherhood journey is yours alone. Walking through it with authenticity is the best way to release the weight of the unrealistic expectations and be the mom you were created to be.

Overcoming a busy lifestyle

Now that we know the reasons why we may be living a busier lifestyle lets learn 4 actionable steps that we can take to decrease the overwhelm.

1 Set healthy boundaries for yourself and your family

This begins with understanding what you need for rest, health and sanity. Once you know this, begin to put those boundaries into place. This may look like saying no to events or activities that do not serve you, setting a specific day/night as family time or only doing work during certain hours of the day. Using a time blocking schedule can help you build a routine that takes into account your boundaries.

2 Delegate, automate, outsource

Do you have too much on your plate? Are their tasks that you can automate, outsource, or delegate? This could be anything from house chores/management tasks to logistics type processes.

For example, I have a friend who is an amazing mom but does not enjoy cooking. So, she delegated this task to her husband and now they rotate cooking nights. This freed up her time to do things that she enjoys outside of the home.

Another way to outsource is by using subscription services for items like laundry detergent, toilet tissue and other regularly purchased household items.

You only have 24 hours in a day. You want to be able to spend that time as productively as possible!

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Embrace a rhythm of working and resting and get more done! Get your copy of our Purposeful Productivity Journal and find more time for the daily tasks that matter and quickly begin creating routines that prioritize rest.

3 Understand the distractions in your life

Distractions in our life come in the form of tasks that we deem as urgent but are not actually important, people and things that demand our time and attention, or simply getting lost in the busyness of life.

It’s important to take some time each day (or week) to understand what is distracting you from your goals. Once you know this, you can begin to put into place systems that keep you on task and maintain healthy boundaries around your free time.

4 Create realistic routines

Supermom syndrome is real! It tells us that we not only can do everything, but we have to do it all. It tells us that if we do not have a perfect life with Pinterest-worthy moments then we are failing.

Creating realistic routines is key to overcoming this syndrome because it allows us to be more intentional with our time. Routines help us to structure our day so that we are not constantly reacting to life, but instead living life on our terms.

5 Set definitive stopping points for your day

In addition to setting boundaries with others, we have to create boundaries with ourselves. Setting definitive stopping points for your workday is crucial to breaking the cycle of living a less busy life. This could look like stopping work at a certain time each night, taking Saturday and Sunday completely off or having specific days of the week that are designated as “work” days.

Defining these boundaries will help you to be more productive during your work hours because you will know when it is time to stop working and start enjoying life!

Life doesn’t have to stay busy

We can’t escape the busyness of life. What we can do is learn to live a more sustainable lifestyle and manage our time better– one where we are not always running from task to task, but instead have enough space in-between tasks for self-care.

This may mean that you need to say “no” once in a while when someone asks you for a favor or if your schedule fills up with too many obligations. It might also be worth examining what it is about your current work/life balance that’s causing this stress on your body and mind so that you’re able to find ways of minimizing these things. If you are ready to decrease the clutter in your heart, home and schedule, grab a copy of our book Finding Time and gain insight on more sustainable time management and planning tips.

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