Feeling overwhelmed? Overworked? Generally Over-it?
Struggling to figure out how to prioritize your life??
When you’re a mom, it can feel like your life is constantly spinning out of control. There are never enough hours in the day to get everything done, and it seems like everything is always a priority. But it’s important to take some time for yourself and figure out what’s really important.
And the process to getting a better handle on what’s truly important isn’t as hard as it may seem. In fact, this post will give you a quick roadmap to prioritizing what is important and letting go of the rest!
Keep reading for my fave tips for finding time for what matters most in your life.
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Why do we struggle to prioritize our life?
So why do we struggle with prioritizing the things that really matter in our lives?
I have found that there are a few reasons that many moms struggle with prioritizing things that they say matter (namely themselves). Those reasons include:
- Unclear values
- Fear of missing out
- People pleasing
- Poor boundaries
Each of these can be a roadblock to living a life that is in alignment with what we clam to value. They then become or motivator for doing more or overextending ourselves in ways that are detrimental to our health and wellbeing.
What are the benefits of prioritizing your life?
So why should we even bother with prioritizing our lives??
There are three big benefits of gaining this critical skill of prioritizing your life. They are:
1. Simplify decision making. When you understand which activities are essential and where your efforts will have the most effect, it’s easy to make smart decisions. You’ll act deliberately rather than meandering from one problem to the next.
2. Accomplish more. Distinguish between doing more and achieving more. Prioritize your goals. Knowing what you’re looking for and how much time you have will help you make better use of both. Prioritizing allows you to work more productively and divide your time more effectively.
3. Reduce stress. Imagine how much more positive you’ll be when you no longer feel as if you have just enough time and too much to do. Accept your limits and take enjoyment in doing your best, even if it isn’t perfect. As you see the benefits of your new sense of direction, your confidence will grow.
Tips for prioritizing life and getting more done
Now that we have a better understanding of why we really should be more intentional about prioritizing our life and tasks, lets look at some ways that we can actually get this done!
Know what is important
The very first thing that we have to do when we are trying to improve your ability to prioritize your life is to get clear on what is truly important to you. This is something that only you can answer.
Brainstorming your values and goals list is one way to do this. Simply list all of the things (people, activities, and more abstract thoughts) then cull this down to a list of 3-5 things. Ex: Family, intellect, and health could be your values list.
You can use this list then as a way to weigh the importance of activities that take up time (that could encroach on the time you have to spend on your values list).
Learn God’s intention for Time Stewardship
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.
Create daily routines
Having daily routines that allot time for your values tasks is a simple but crucial step towards learning to prioritize your life and having more time for the things that matter.
I have always believed that in order to see what people truly value take a look at how they spend their time, (some also equate money here). But for me, time is a finite resource, and how we spend it really should point to and align with what we say is important to us.
Daily routines help to ensure that this is what truly happens in our life because it helps us to keep important commitments front and center.
Ahhhh, boundaries… How many of us have them? I am so glad that in the current culture that is an emphasis on boundaries, not only in the idea of setting them, but also in acknowledging them in others. It has made us much more aware of cues from those who do struggle with boundaries.
We are asking the question about comfort and availability with so much more grace, but there is still room for improvement.
Boundaries on our time help us to keep space clear for more of what matters. Creating boundaries gives us the space to easily say no consistently to things that do not fit into our boundaries.
Downtime gives you space for clear decision making. It improves your focus and efficiency and makes it easier to prioritize your life. It also combats decision fatigue, which is when you are so overwhelmed with choices that you can no longer make rational decisions.
Downtime can be as simple as taking a walk or meditating for 5 minutes. It doesn’t have to be hours long, but it should be consistent.
Organize your day
Plan your time with your priorities in mind. You’ll be less likely to become sidetracked by external pressures and distractions. This can come in the form of planning your day or week.
Time blocking is one method I consistently use to create schedules and routines that are sustainable through the busyness of life. These include morning and evening routines, and even simple cleaning routines. With time blocking I can begin to train my body to be in the “mood” for certain tasks as we go through the day. This way the routine tasks become habitual!
Looking for more tips on time management? Check out all of our productivity resources
If you tend to regard everything as being equally important, look closer. Think of your life as a business and ask yourself how profitable each activity is. Additionally when thinking of profit, consider happiness and health as the scale vs financial profit.
You can prioritize activities by estimating the value each one brings to your life. This will help you see some things more clearly and also help you to be more intentional with your time!
Disconnect from what distracts you
Distractions come in many forms, from digital distractions, emotional distractions and even those that are based in comparison and insecurity. Distractions are things that come up, steal time, and leave us feeling unaccomplished.
For many of this social media and our smart phones rank high on the list of distractions. Stepping away from these time sucks can help you ensure you have time for the thing you truly value.
Simplify your life
The more complex our lives become, the more difficult it becomes to find time for what we value.
One way to make more time is to reduce the number of activities and commitments you have. You can do this by evaluating your current commitments and letting go of those that are no longer serving you.
Decluttering your home and your mind are also excellent ways to slow down the busyness around you.
Start your day strong
Create momentum that will drive you forward all day long. Score a quick win when you go for a morning run or meditate while it’s still quiet and let these simple morning activities propel you throughout your day.
Minimize your to-do list
When you have less to do, the doing takes less time. – Ashley-yoda, 🙂
This world glorifies weariness. It idolizes the hustle, and it pushes us to striving. We feel as if we are failing if we are not busy or can’t claim how exhausted we are at the end of the day!
Weed out the nonessential items. Decide which tasks require excellence and which can be considered good enough if you complete them on time. Additionally you want to determine which tasks can be outsourced.
What can you let go of and give to someone else??
Ask for help
We all accomplish more working together. Practice delegating at the office and at home. Divide up complex projects so everyone can draw on their individual strengths.
You don’t have to do it all. We have to stop taking on the supermom complex and trying to take on every task in our work and home lives! It’s not sustainable!
Write things down
Whether you rely on modern technology or a paper journal, putting your priorities into writing will help you stay on track. You’ll be able to monitor your progress and spot any obstacles you need to overcome. It will also make you more accountable.
Writing activates different areas of your brain than simply thinking about something. It also allows you to prioritize and edit as you go. What’s more, it’s a great way to process your plans.
Test and Reasses
Lastly, you want to test out your plans and priorities and then reassess. A lot of what we do is based in the desires of others. Whether it is fear of missing out or simply trying to keep up, sometimes we can prioritize these without taking time to determine if it is truly important to us.
Trying out plans, schedules, and routines helps us really evaluate the viability and truth behind what we prioritize.
This tip simply means to go through the process of enacting the plans and then seeing if you like it. Asking yourself questions like: Is it sustainable and realistic? Does this truly feel authentic to my needs? Can help you determine if you need to reevaluate your plans and reprioritize.
Prioritizing your life
If you’re feeling overwhelmed and like you can never quite get ahead, don’t worry, you’re not alone. But there are things we can do to make life a little bit easier. By learning how to prioritize our lives, we can make better decisions and get more done in less time. And that will leave us with more headspace for what matters most.
We hope this article has given you some helpful tips on how to create routines and boundaries that work for you, as well as ideas for ways to organize your day. If you need further encouragement, be sure to download our free Productivity Journal which is full of helpful prompts and advice specifically tailored for moms who want to learn how to prioritize their lives.