The other day, a reader left this question on Facebook for me, or for anyone else who’d like to answer.
How do you make time for you with kids, work/homeschooling, husband, etc.?
To be honest, I don’t think I’m a super-fantastic person to answer this question because I tend to go, go, go, go, go, and doing something just for me sometimes feels not-productive, so sometimes I have a hard time making time for that. Also, my life is a little bit on the full end of things, so it’s not like I ever am just left with empty time to fill.
I do get the basic self-care stuff done, though (showering, reading my Bible and praying, getting a good night’s sleep), mostly because I place a really high priority on those things. My house might not always be clean, my bathroom might be dusty, my linen closet might be cluttered, but I sleep, shower, and read my Bible and pray! Those things keep me energized and productive, I think and if I let those go, I probably wouldn’t be much good to anyone.
By the way, to help me not feel totally overwhelmed by mothering and to help me get those basic things done, it’s been helpful to have some boundaries with my kids in the form of consistent (fairly early) bedtimes, rules about staying in bed during the night (except for times of actual need), and, depending on the age of the kids, rules about what time it’s ok to get up and come out in the morning. I don’t think every household necessarily needs to operate that way, but these habits have allowed me to maintain my sanity and get enough rest.
I also think it helps that I am fortunate enough to find a lot of my work to be pretty fulfilling, so the line between me-time and work-time is a little blurry. For instance, I really love to take pictures, and so although that’s part of blogging (which is work, to a degree), it doesn’t really feel like work…it feels like something fun.
And I like playing music, so when I serve at church in that way, it doesn’t feel like pure work.
I think having a spouse who is supportive is also really helpful. Mr. FG knows it’s good for me to do things apart from him and the kids at least some of the time, so he is supportive of me going to something like Bible study or to a women’s retreat, and he usually does fun stuff with the kids while I’m gone (Which means that they’re not at all opposed to me going out. Hee.)
Now, all that said, I am positive that there are many of you who are a whole lot better than me at finding the appropriate balance between taking care of others and taking care of yourself, so have at it in the comments!
Joshua’s 365 post: Dragon