How to Fix Your Overloaded Mom Life

Marvelous Mom, do you yearn for relief from the pressure of overload?

Of course you do. We could all use a little more margin in our lives.

  • Overload is not having enough time to finish the meal you just made. Margin is savoring each bite.
  • Overload is lethargic. Margin is energetic.
  • Overload is hurry. Margin is calm.
  • Overload is debt. Margin is enough, and then some.

With margin in your motherhood, you will be able to create whatever you may want including:

  • A family that is less rushed, more self-reliant, and organized
  • Enough money for a comfortable retirement
  • Healthy dinners together
  • Time for your own self-care
  • Living at your natural weight.
  • A thriving side gig: a full-grown, money-making expression of your passion.
  • Deeper, more connected relationships with your partner and your children.

How? By applying these 3 practices: managing your brain, getting clear about what you want and editing everything.

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1 | Managing our mindset helps us achieve our goals.

Thinking is a skill, a craft and an art. It can be worked on and improved with practice. We all have an opportunity to become better thinkers. Go where you think best, and spend more time there. ~ Jesse Itzler, Living with the Monks

First, breathe. To moving from overwhelm to calm, take time to breathe. When you change your physiology, your higher brain kicks into gear. Add your name and email in the form below for our Burnout to Brilliance: Part 1 Worksheet.

 

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The only things we can control in life are our thoughts, feelings and actions. If we can manage those, we can increase the margin in our life.

To achieve this level of control over our thoughts, we need to learn about how to feel our emotions. Add your name and email below for our Burnout to Brilliance: Part 2 Worksheet.

If we understand better how our minds work, we can be intentional about influencing our thinking patterns. We can evaluate reality more clearly, gain margin and live more intentionally.

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2 | Create a plan to get clear on what you want.

All you need is the plan, the road map, and the courage to press on to your destination. ~ Earl Nightingale

Let’s start where you are, with your to do list.

All moms have to do lists. Do you get tired of copying yours and watching them grow so long? Do you still forget to do things? Does your list just make you feel overwhelmed? Me, too.

Let’s divide and conquer.

Sort your to do’s into 9 buckets under the 3 pillars of Healthy, Wealthy and Wise. They include ALL of life so we don’t neglect any important part.

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For a worksheet of what’s contained in each bucket, put your name and email in the form below.

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Putting your thoughts down will de-clutter your head and free up energy.

Now write down what you wanted that you already have in each bucket. Bullet points are fine.

Take the time to jot down what you have already created that your heart desired in each bucket. Starting your life plan for a place of abundance is a must.

Next, notice what you’d like in each bucket and note those things as well.

Here’s a super easy way to create a one-page summary of those answers. Note your to-do’s sorted by bucket on the back. Now you have a plan! I call it a GPS for Life.

For years I printed this one-page plan every week and carried it in my wallet. I noted anything new, either a to-do or a desire, as it came up. This practice made it so much easier to remember everything. What a relief!

Today I keep my GPS for Life in my Notes App on my phone.

My projects are in Google Keep Notes, sorted by bucket, and pinned to the top. Bringing the most urgent projects to the top of the list is easy using their check box feature. No more re-copying lists!

I believe we all have a internal GPS to help us get wherever we want. Deciding what you want in advance calibrates your GPS. Writing it down makes everything more likely to happen. 

You can trust your GPS for Life to keep you on the path to a life you love.  Look at it often. Each time you do, it will inspire the strength you need to bear whatever life brings.

For tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today. ~ African Proverb

Write down words that capture dreams to calibrate your GPS for Life.

What if we became crystal clear on what we wanted in life? If we knew what we wanted to create, how we wanted to live … we could say yes to these things, and no to everything else. Saying no to more things would simplify our lives. ~ Leo Babauta

Look at any profession where the stakes are high and you’ll see a well-thought-out plan being followed. Professionals just don’t wing it.

Doctors follow a treatment plan. Airline pilots follow a flight plan. Entrepreneurs follow a business plan.

While no one can guarantee your success, having a written plan dramatically increases the probability of creating the life you want.

I’ve borrowed words for my plan from inspiring bloggers like Courtney Carver from BeMoreWithLess, Leo Babauta from ZenHabits.net, Trent Hamm at TheSimpleDollar and the many authors at Mindful, No Sidebar and Tiny Buddha.

I’ll grab anyone’s words to clarify where I want to go so the picture in my mind has tons of juicy details.

Keep changing, updating, clarifying the words in each of the buckets in your plan. The time you invest will payoff in better focus and determination.

The most noble, courageous, important thing that anyone could ever do in life is to figure out exactly what we want, what will make us truly content and truly satisfied, and never stop acting on it until we bring it into reality.

And then teach our children how to do it.

 

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3 | Editing creates focus and margin.

The question of what you want to own is actually the question of how you want to live your life. ~ Marie Kondō, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing

What a great book! Marie is so clear on the benefits of living a clutter-free life. Here’s a summary on YouTube.

She advocates de-cluttering your home in one day. That sounds wonderful. And if you can hire someone to help you who knows what you need to do, do it.

But it wasn’t how I did it.

At least fifteen years ago I set up a email reminder to find 2 bags of stuff to donate at the beginning of each month. It was inspired by a reader of GetOrganizedNow from Marcia Garcia.

I learned to edit bit-by-bit. Taking it slowly worked for me. It could work for you.

I love going to my closet and only finding the clothes I love to wear. It’s a relief to go into our closets and cupboards and only find our favorite things. Now, whenever I need a temporary spot for something, there is plenty of room to store it.

Editing our food has given me so much time back. We now have a set menu based on the day of the week. I eat the same thing at lunch — a salad with chicken, tuna or tofu and leftover roasted veggies from the night before. For dinner, I know what I’m going to cook and what we need at the grocery store. We do adapt the menu and our grocery list based on the time of the year when produce is available, and we change it if our tastes change. Overall, the predictability of food has added a lot of margin to my life.

Read on for how I’m applying the editing principle to how I spend my time. Click here to go to the post, How to Spark Joy by Decluttering Your To Do List.

 

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Deciding in advance gives you back your ‘me’ time.

Another non-financial aspect of frugality that really clicks with me is that I’ve come to really value a more fixed routine in my life. Frugality and a fixed routine in life tend to go hand in hand. Earlier in my life, I didn’t schedule my time nearly as much and I found myself often stressed out and uncertain as to what I should be doing, and that often caused me to just throw money at problems that arose because of that stress and that unstructured life. My adoption of frugality and adoption of a more ordered and fixed routine in my life have gone hand in hand and have made my life much more peaceful.

~ Trent Hamm

 

I’ve recently started editing my time using time blocking. I resisted this idea for decades. I thought blocking my time would stifle my creativity and spontaneity.

Time-blocking is organizing your day in a series of time slots. Instead of a list of tasks that take as long as they take, with a time-blocked approach each time periods is devoted to a task or tasks. It immediately lets us see where we’re being unrealistic about time and keep us focused on what we want to do.

Having a daily template has released me to create what’s really important to me. I save ‘brain juice’ by already knowing what to do next. I chunk big projects into one-hour tasks and work at them systematically throughout my week. 

Kevin Kruse, author of 15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management, says there is a psychological reason why time blocking makes more sense. In what is know as the Zeigarnik Effect: we remember what isn’t done better than what is, and that uncompleted tasks bother us.

“This can lead to stress and insomnia. However, when we have all of our tasks placed into a specific date, time, and duration, we sleep more soundly knowing everything that needs to get done is in its place,” Kruse says.

Since blocking my time, I do sleep better. When I put my head on my pillow at night, I know that I’ve done what’s important and wasted little energy. It’s improved my health and my sanity.

 

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Start Where Your Heart Is

Each of these 3 actions are incredibly powerful ways to add margin to life.

But please don’t let them add to your overload. Instead, start with taking a small step in the idea that hits your heart first.

Once that action is complete, do the next step. Once you’ve completed several, you will begin to see a sliver of margin enter your life. 

Would you like to ask me a question? Click on “Work With Me” above, then on the “Pick Your Time” button and schedule a time to talk.

It would be my honor to help.

Monday Mini-Step

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