Time Saving Hacks for Busy Moms
Treasure every moment, they tell you when your kids are young. They’re only young once. You’ll never get those moments back. The problem is that we end up spending so many of those precious moments in everyday tasks (and frustrations) like chopping vegetables, finding lost shoes and running forgotten homework up to school that it’s hard to remember what we’re supposed to enjoy. These time-saving hacks will help you eliminate energy sinks and reclaim your time to spend on the things you love doing.
Find Your Pain Points
Getting organized looks different for every family because no two families are alike. Before you get started, take a few minutes to figure out your biggest challenges for getting through the day. Do you have to drop everything to deliver the lunch someone forgot to bring with them? Does dinner mean takeout way too often because no one has time to cook? Once you’ve put your finger on the places where your days get out of control, you can figure out the best time-saving hacks to rein in the chaos that keeps you from being the mom you want to be.
Organize Your Physical Space
One of the most important things you can do to save time is to set up your physical space in a way that promotes getting things done. Set up a go-station in the front hall with bins and coat hooks for each kid to stash homework, backpacks, boots, mittens — everything they need to get out the door in the morning. Rearrange your kitchen so that everything you need for specific tasks is in one place. The easier you make it to find the things you need, the less time you have to spend getting tasks done.
Don’t Spend Time — Invest It
One of the biggest stumbling blocks to getting organized is finding the time to do it. It’s easy to tell yourself you don’t have time to make daily lists or straighten up the laundry room — but they’re small actions that can pay off in lots of saved time later in the week. Here’s how to save time by investing it wisely in five different ways.
● Make a weekly menu, and plan your shopping around it. Not only will you save time, you’ll save money spent on fast food takeout and last-minute grocery trips — and you’re more likely to cook nutritious meals.
● Cook ahead. Spend a couple of hours on a weekend afternoon to cook dinners or set up grab-and-go breakfasts for the week ahead. Bonus benefit: get everyone involved for some fun family time.
● Make a daily to-do list to help you organize your day and make sure you don’t forget anything. A daily planner makes a great busy-mom organizer — 10 to 20 minutes of planning can save you lots of stress the next day.
● Lay out school clothes for the week all at once. Spending twenty minutes once a week to lay out everyone’s school clothes will save countless minutes of “I don’t know what to wear!” when you’re trying to get out the door.
Let Someone Else Do It
One of the quickest ways to save time is to let someone else do the things that take up your time. Here are five ways to save time by letting someone else do the time-spendy parts of your everyday chores.
● Buy food in the form you’re going to use it — pre-sliced vegetables, packaged mirepoix, rotisserie chicken.
● Order groceries online and have them delivered. It’s a lot less expensive than you think.
● Find a cleaning service for major chores like spring cleaning, or to come in for an hour once a week to do the vacuuming, dusting and other time-consuming tasks.
● Set up a meal swap group with your friends. If you get five friends together, you each cook once and get five different meals.
● Delegate tasks to family members — and let them do them without hovering or micro-managing.
Avoid Time Wasters
Identify and eliminate the time sinks in your life. Hunting for your car keys is a minor annoyance, but it can throw a major crimp into an already stressful morning. Tag important items with a Cube tracker and regain all those wasted minutes.
When you’re a mom, there’s never enough hours in a day to do all the things you want to do. These time-saving hacks for busy moms help you kill the time sinks and find precious minutes to spend on you and your family.
Deb Powers is a freelance writer, social media consultant and mother of five who appreciates every bit of technology that makes her life easier and more organized.