I really don’t have my shit together.
Back at work for nearly a month now has me adjusting yet again to new routines, trying to be organised and remembering a zillion things.
These concepts are pretty foreign to me, you might as well ask me to read a map or recite times tables #lostinNYC #cantcount.
There are also the emotional and mental challenges that come from returning back to work after a year of wearing leggings at all public outings, being a human dairy and wondering if you will ever be able to see your own vag again past your Joey pouch (any day now ladies, any day).
My Self confidence lapses. I need to recall how to write an email without it sounding like a WhatsApp message. The humongous guilt and sadness being away from my baby, along with the desire to maintain a career and use my brain. Yep, it’s tough. And I’m struggling as someone in an extremely lucky situation of a secure livelihood and sharing the load with a super duper Hubby. So many Queens are out there doing it solo and/or facing huge challenges – Queens I salute you!!
Whilst I’m shit at a lot of things there is something I like to think I can have a part in – adapting to change. I want a less stressful existence for my fambam so I have started implementing a few strategies. As I’m a true believer of “sharing is caring” below is a bunch of stuff helping me. None of this is sponsored, I’m just sharing in the hope it may help another Type B Lovely.
Reminders on phone
Hubby and I now share reminder and groceries lists through our iPhones. You can set deadlines and get notifications. There are a bunch of apps where you can do the same thing. We also send calendar invites for everything. Now I don’t have to say “I TOLD YOU I wanted Milo” because it is right there on the list.
Principle of future self
I downloaded Lorraine Murphy’s book “Get Remarkably Organised”. I’m only a few chapters in but had a total “aha” moment thanks to Lorraine. Being organised is is all about looking after yourself, it is self care on steroids. As Lorraine puts it:
“Rather than deferring tasks to our Future Selves, if we can instead take care of our Future Selves by making their lives that little bit easier, life overall starts to flow more smoothly”.
This concept is what underpins motivation for not putting things off and being prepared. For example, meal planning and preparation. If I’m organised and prep healthy snacks and main meals on a Sunday, I know I can stay on track with my eating at work. This is absolute self-care as I’m ensuring my nutrition is taken care of. Plus it helps with the bank balance not buying everything at the cafe.
I know this sounds pretty “DUH” but hey, it is working for this “can’t be bothered” girl!
The night before
Everyone has heard of the ‘night before’ concept: Pack the kids’ school bags, make lunches, lay your clothes out the night before, so you save time in the morning.
The night before concept actually makes a huge difference. I get the kids to school and childcare are on time if I do it. If I don’t, I’m going to be late. It also helped me today off with the kids. I stayed up late and got on top of the house work so I felt less stressed today. Sure, they have already trashed it but I have been way more chilled with them today which is always a bonus.
Less is more when it comes to ‘stuff’. The less things you have the less time you spend on cleaning and sorting. Plus you are able to find what you want quickly. I have been moving towards minimilism for a few years now, even when this blog was called AMICA. It doesn’t come easy to me but I’m waay better than I used to be. You can check out some of my attempts here and here.
Mums Who Organise
Mums Who Organise is a rad Facebook group that is still in the sweet stage where trolls and sad people who like to be mean on social media haven’t taken over. It is full of organisation inspo. Get on it.
I’m constantly looking for ways to be more productive at work. Our team is trialing having more stand up meetings and cutting out meetings all together when not beneficial. I block out chunks of time in my calendar so I can put my headphones on, crank Drake and get stuck in.
As a part timer I never checked my work emails at home as I didn’t want to be distracted. But I have started to because I feel more prepared on Monday morning. I don’t always action the emails, but just knowing what is going on helps.
A massive part of reducing overwhelm is having a healthy mindset. Going back to work had me feeling unsure of my abilities and trying to find my feet. An awesome colleague reminded me it takes over three months to feel comfortable in a new role and the same would apply after maternity leave. I’m trying to be kinder to myself and I’m starting to get back into a groove.
Another aspect of mindset is expectations. Understanding that we aren’t doing ourselves any favours trying to be superwomen who are everything to everyone all the time. By focusing on what is important and slacking off on the rest is the way forward. And what is important? Go back to your values. If you are aligned with them you will be fine. I’m the creator of a lot of my mental load and overwhelm, so it is up to me to change.
So this is my wish for all of us in 2018 – less. As I posted earlier this year on social media:
Ps. I did a post on part-time work a few years back that has more tips. You can check it out here.