Pushing through grad school at 39 years old with a full-time job and a young son is never easy, but we do what we gotta do right? I was a bit in my feelings on yesterday after learning that I made a C on a pretty important assignment. Truth be told, I was upset because I knew I could’ve done so much better. So what was my problem you ask? For the life of me, I could not get focused! I found time to check Facebook, email, text messages, and scour the internet for recipes, yet my homework was fast becoming the needle at the bottom of my haystack.
So this sister snapped out of her pity party and decided to figure out some ways to stay on top of my assignments and still have a decent personal life. I assume I’m not the only awesome chicka going through something like this, so I want to share a way to tackle the myths you may believe about your lack of time. Here’s to surviving annoying single mom brain fog and getting your booty back in gear. You might be surprised at what I’m about to say.
Too much to do and not enough time to do it. Of course we have enough time, yet too often we try to jam way too much “stuff ” into that time. Imagine your day as a small storage container. You can only fit so much into that space. So how do you do it? By refining and letting go. Once you see all the miscellaneous things (running errands, small tasks, social functions, social media, etc) that you’re trying to fit in your tiny space, you will soon realize that the container doesn’t stretch so you will have to adjust what you’re attempting to fit in that container. In essence, get rid of it.
Start paying attention to what you do when you wake up in the morning. Are you immediately grabbing your cell phone or tablet and browsing certain websites? Are you guilty of getting off from work and playing Cookie Crush like I am? Do you have to take your kids to practice? Is it a must that you see ALL the missed Facebook updates before going on to the next thing on your list? How many TV shows are you watching? If you’re anything like me, you will find LOTS of wasted space in your container that could be filled with important tasks like answering a discussion board, doing some research, or typing one single page of an upcoming research paper. You may also notice events you are agreeing to attend when you know you don’t have the time to do so. Learn to say NO without feeling guilty. Who’s gonna write that paper when your having to commit to an all nighter because you just “had” to go have drinks with the girls.
Once you have a list of the most important tasks for the day, imagine you can only perform three of those tasks. Now of those three tasks, pick the most important. Focus on that task first. You will have to literally move everything else out of the way and focus on that task. This does not always have to be work or sweat driven tasks, it can be fun and exciting tasks. The key is choosing the three tasks most important to you and your well-being then committing to them… one by one. So what do you do with all the other “stuff” you have programmed yourself to do on a daily basis?
You can get to them AFTER you’ve crossed off your three most important tasks or you can not do them at all right? If they were that important, they would’ve made your list. At the end of the day, they simply did not make it into your container for the day. As long as you “feel” you “should” be able to do it all, you will consistently be frustrated and resentful. That’s all it is anyway, a feeling. You simply cannot be everything to everyone. I think there are tons of single moms that deserve an “S” on their chest, but the truth is you are not Superwoman and you do not have super powers. You are not perfect. No one is. Well, except Jesus. Let those silly ideas of being the epitomy of BFF, mom, daughter, student, employee, coach, entrepreneur, cook, housekeeper, mate, and any other hat you wear……go. Reality says it simply cannot be done without burning you out or sacrificing what matters the most. I think you will feel more accomplished and at peace when you know you did what was best for your household and your sanity. What are some ways you keep it together? Let’s help each other keep peace in our minds and homes.
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