As a third time mother I found myself lost in a blur of intense devotion to the helpless newborn resting in my arms. Then, I felt the pull of everyday reality interrupt my bliss. I realised that as much as I would want to remain completely engulfed in my bliss, I had a home and family that needed me too.
To balance out the needs of the home and family I’m sharing my top 5 time management tips. Whether you have just become a mother, have older children or are single, time is always of the essence. We never seem to have enough of it. So maximising the time we do have is essential.
1. Plan your diet ahead of time
Remember on airplanes when they tell you to always fix your own oxygen mask first in the case of an emergency before helping others? Well the same principle applies. A well mum is one that is completely available for her children and spouse. This means balanced diet, basic skincare, exercise and rest. Yeah right you might be thinking but it’s completely possible with planning. Keep things realistic and expectations minimal.
• Do your groceries online and have them delivered. Most companies offer free delivery if you order over a certain amount.
• Or you can order your meals online. Many companies offer packaged meals to your door now.
• Have pre prepared nutritional meals ready to microwave or put in the oven, whether you made them or they have been ordered. Some companies I’ve tried are Youfoodz, Dietlicious and Musclemealsdirect.
• Have healthy snacks stocked for those rushed moments of fatigue and midnight pick me ups.
• Have a bottle of water with you to ensure adequate hydration
• If you have a dishwasher, now is the time to use it.
2. Short bursts of Exercise
• Short walks help both you and baby relax in the early months
• Invest in an easy to manoeuvre pram. I can’t rave enough about the Valco snap ultra 4! So super easy to move and the sports pack wheels make it durable on any surface.
• Invest in comfortable running or walking shoes that are cute! This will motivate you to use them not just snap insta pics of them.
• Raining or too hot outside? The local shopping centre can give you about 35 minutes walk from one end to another and back.
3. Keep it simple Skincare
• keep it super simple in the early months. Use a cleanser during your shower to cut time. You can even brush your teeth in the shower to maximise time!
• Use a scrub twice a week in the shower. One for your face and another for body. My fave is from skinstitut.
• Shave in the shower if you can and if you need to
• follow with moisturiser straight after to keep skin hydrated. Look for products with perfumes that may irritate baby’s skin when you snuggle. I love Aveeno for baby and mum.
• A moisturiser with sunscreen is perfect for mornings to ensure skin is protected and hydrated.
4. Get enough Rest
I say enough because everyone has different needs for sleep. You know what yours are so work around your needs
• Have Comfy lounge clothes while you are at home so you can sleep when baby sleeps. I love anything with buttons up top for breastfeeding ease.
• Have a designated feeding area to feed baby in a relaxed position. I love my rocking chair and ottoman. I also have a single bed in baby’s nursery so I can put her down in her cot and have snooze in the bed.
• Say yes to help. Friends and family are so important during this time. Having older children makes them super good helpers with baby and we get to spend family time together teaching learning and creating memories.
5. Streamline cleaning
It’s got to be done whether we enjoy it or not. To reduce the stress this can cause these tips have helped me a lot!
• Have storage boxes allocated for kids toys so you can just chuck them in there and still stay organised.
• Have allocated storage for baby’s things and aim to have the pantry organised before birth so everything has a home.
• Have seperate laundry baskets for clothes so you don’t need to sit and sort them.
• Aim to tidy one area a day only. Instead of spring cleaning the whole kitchen tidy the bench top. Or tidy your desk.
• Get help if you can. Local cleaners have become affordable and you can request only big things like vacuum and mop floors and clean bathrooms. If that’s not an option enlist hubbys help and if you have other kids start a chore roster.
• Invest in a good dust buster for quick small cleans. A narrow stick vacuum is excellent for this. I love the Dyson stock.
• Use wipes! They are a life saver for everything! Even spot cleaning clothing.
These major things can be easily managed to maximise your time so you have more to spend with your new baby and family. These tips aren’t just for mums, they work for anyone wanting to make the most of their time to focus on the more important things in life.
By getting the mundane out of the way I could return to enjoying my newborn, watching the bond between her and her siblings grow each day and witnessing the effect her magic has on the whole family.