Monday, January 28, 2013

Why I'm Driving Myself Nuts

My friend Kara-Kae hosts a fun monthly link-up for moms, and this month she is asking about how to balance life as a mom. Upon reading her prompt and then evaluating a few things in my life, I realized something:

I've unintentionally been making my life much more difficult than it needs to be. (But I may know how to solve the problem!)

If you're familiar with Myers-Briggs personality preferences, you'll know what I mean when I say that I'm an extreme SJ (which basically means that structure, order, and stability are vital to my sanity). I love lists, following a routine, and making a spreadsheet is my heaven on earth. But right now, I pretty much have no daily routine. I am unorganized with the details of my family's life and I often feel like I'm flying by the seat of my pants. I'm basically living contradictory to what could help me thrive more as a mom, wife, friend, and just as a person. And I'm driving myself nuts!

Some of my only "routines" as of date:
Putting Nicholas in the high chair so I can get ready  I  breakfast for me and Nicholas 
Mt. Laundry  I  Nightly week ice cream while I blog

Maybe you could tell (from this post or this post) that I've recently taken a step back and looked at how I "run" my life. I've seen that my lack of structure and organization is making me crazy. (Sometimes I envision myself just freaking out and eating an entire tub of ice cream while I watch a "Bring It On" marathon. It scares me a little.) And if I'm going nuts, that means my family is too. Because moms, although it's hard to admit, we are often the thermostat of our house. If we're stressed or irritable, chances are our husband and kids will have a hard time not following suit.

So I'm making a few changes. Nope, I'm going to change overnight. And yup, I'll probably still forget to turn on the crock pot until it's too late. But I think that adding a little more organization to my life is going to make life more enjoyable for myself and for my family.

Here's a few things I already do/am beginning to do, to organize my life:

- Reading this book (moms - buy it NOW!) by Jamie Martin. A journey toward intentional motherhood? I say yes! (I'm also going to giveaway a copy of this book by Jamie later in the week, so come back to check it out!)

- Once or twice a month take a good chunk of alone time. To pray, plan for the month, and evaluate how things have gone. This is often done during Nicholas' nap, or when I ask Brian/ a friend to take Nicholas out of the house for a little bit so I can be alone.

- Going to bed earlier. Doesn't happen every night by any means, but I'm trying.

- I want to start waking up in the morning before Nicholas does. (Arrg.) I love my sleep SO much. But I also love getting dressed and feeling like a human before 11am. So the pros may outweigh the cons :)

- Meal-planning for each day of the week. I've been doing this for awhile, but not becuase I'm uber organized - I'm just such an inexperienced cook that if I don't know exactly what I'm making every day and can grocery shop accordingly, our meals flop. I plan on expanding on this in an upcoming post!

- Remembering what the wise mama of 4 and entrepreneur Haley Morgan says - it's ok if today's schedule and tomorrow's schedule looks completely different. I don't have to set a routine that looks the same every single day. One day can be full of checking things off of my to-do list, while the next can be spent in my jammies, playing on the floor with Nicholas and cooking. As stay-at-home mom (or for work-at-home-moms), our days don't have to look like 9-5 hours, and that's ok.

As a final thought, not all of us need super strict structure to thrive, and that is perfectly ok. (Case and point? My hubby. List-making and too many plans make him crazy.) I know several mamas who are much happier and do much better when life is more flexible - so if that's you, please do your family life in the way that works best for you! No judgment here - I'm just getting too sloppy for my own good :)

What types of structure keeps you sane? Or are you like my husband and thrive more on spontaneity than on structure? Do you have any tips for me? :)
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Linking up with Kara-Kae for Tuesday's Messy Motherhood!


  1. I hear ya! Thanks for the book link. I am looking for ways to streamline the home-life, and need to take some new steps too. Looks like a good read!

  2. Great post! I know that bringing a baby home in April will change so many things (more than I realize, I'm sure!). But, you definitely make a good point: if you are doing something counterproductive to your personality, it will drive you crazy :) I'll definitely be keeping that in mind!!

  3. I could so relate to this post! I'm am the same way - I NEED ROUTINE. We've finally been able to create our weekly schedule as a family, and it's made my life so much more manageable. For the first time ever, I just started creating meal plans! Why didn't I do this sooner?! My husband now thinks I'm Super Woman!

  4. Great post! I am a lover of schedules and lists and routines also.


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