Do you find your life as a homeschool mom super busy? How can you rearrange your lifestyle to manage time and create the life you want your family- despite the fact that it’s busy? Should you cut down on your busyness, or should you embrace your busy life and make the most of it?
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Today’s podcast is about striking that balance: being busy and enjoying your seasons of busyness. You can actually have it both ways without having to give up either. You can be a busy homeschool family, manage time, and still enjoy the process.
Here are some tips that have helped me to manage a busy homeschool lifestyle.
Decide where you need to manage time better.
Admittedly, many of us go through seasons, especially as our kids become older, of what I like to refer to as “time catastrophes”- when there just seems to be no time to do anything except chauffeur our kids and support them with transportation needs. When we admit our time conflicts, we give ourselves the freedom to solve the problem.
Admit the conflict, and move on with possible solutions to tame the time management beast! The first step to success in getting through your busy homeschool is to admit you have one!
Use a planning system like it’s your best friend.
I especially love Google calendar, but I also love my handy, dandy notebooks. Notebooks are my best friend and it’s where I write down my goals for the day. Writing down my goals gives me the motivation to check back and see what and how much I’ve accomplished.
I tend to write out my kids’ homeschool goals for the day so I can keep track of where we are education-wise. I also write about my business goals so I can weave those into what I’m doing throughout the day as well. Household goals and errands to run are factored in. Then I have personal goals (like fitness and health) I add those in.
Putting these all on a planner gives me a nice overall picture of what my day should be like, and I’m more likely to accomplish those goals. I can’t accomplish my goals in a busy homeschool without notebooks.
Be intentional about managing time and set realistic goals.
My goals have to be realistic if I plan to truly accomplish them. I realize I can’t do it all and that progress in each aspect of my life takes time and daily commitment. I like the phrase “slow and steady wins the race.” If I just give a little attention every day to helping my daughter with grammar, math, and a science project she becomes better slowly over time. If I give myself small, incremental goals for making progress with learning a new skill, working for one client, cleaning or decluttering only ONE room in the house for the week, doing laundry a bit every day, reading one chapter of a book…this is where I learn the beauty of setting goals that I can realistically accomplish.
This keeps me from being overwhelmed.
Manage time better by delegating.
Because there is so much to accomplish I’ve learned to delegate. My daughters are both old enough to do a good portion of the housework for me. They can both cook and clean after themselves, make their own beds, clean their rooms, and do their own laundry. I focus on housekeeping, excluding their bedrooms and shared bathroom which they are responsible for.
I’ve also learned the beauty of delegating lesson planning for my high schooler who is in 10th grade. She can now take charge of her education and figure out her own path to success. Rather than driving myself bananas figuring out how to chart her path through high school and college, I gather the information for my knowledge only and after talking with my husband and sharing this info with her, I’ve thrown the ball in her court to see if she will take some lead in charting her path through the rest of 10th grade.
Delegating her education to my daughter and observing closely to see how this goes is giving us both freedom to breathe and relax through high school. Delegating household chores takes a big load off me.
Don’t be afraid to say “yes” or “no”.
Sometimes we’ll just have to say no. No to too many events. No to yet another volunteer opportunity. No to this curriculum that is no longer working for our family. No to another park day because we’re gone far too often.
Other times we need to say yes. Yes to a volunteer activity that is the chance of a lifetime. Yes to a new curriculum that will bless our kids and make our homeschooling lives easier. Yes to a park day because our family needs that time out of the house.
Know when to say yes or no and don’t be afraid to use your freedom of the “yes” or “no”.
Manage time by simplifying where you can.
- the 3 r’s- and being sure to add in spiritual studies
- let go of cleaning overkill
- plan easy meals