Even if the dish fairies aren’t going to get the washing up done, the chances are the cleaning will get done eventually, so cut yourself some slack – no matter how busy your day is, there is always a way to grab half an hour to yourself. And relaxing or simply getting something else done will really take the weight off your shoulders.
Mum’s life: finding 30 minutes each day for yourself
- Make larger meals every few days and freeze half of what you cook so that you can use it for dinner next week. This sounds so simple, but how often do we really make the most of those plastic food boxes just waiting to be used in our kitchen cupboards?
- Be 23 again! Remember when you used to get all the chores like the food shopping and the laundry done on Saturdays because you were working all week? Whether you have a full-time job or you’re at home during the week, there’s no law that says being a mum means you have to do housework every day! Load all those chores into one morning at the weekend, get the family gang to chip in and don’t even dare to do a mid-week wash! If your other half moans that he’s run out of undies by Thursday, buy him some spare pairs…
- Create a ‘to do’ box. Whether it’s looking at bills or setting aside a magazine you really want to read, chuck it into a handy box in the kitchen or the lounge and force yourself to randomly pick one thing from the box each day – then promise yourself you’ll act on it straight away. This way you’ll force yourself to get that little thing done; whether it’s important or trivial, ticking it off your list will really make you feel like you’ve squeezed some more time out of your day.
- Take yourself out for a coffee. OK, so a latte in a nearby café costs a lot more than a mug in your kitchen, but getting out of the house for half an hour will make you spend that time on yourself. It doesn’t have to be every day, and don’t wait until there’s a day when a friend can meet you, just grab a book or a handful of birthday cards you’ve been meaning to write, and pop out for a me-time treat.
- Change your bathtime routine. Do you rush to have a shower before the school run, or fit it in somewhere between finishing the washing up and bedtime? If you usually come back home after dropping the kids at school, save bathtime until you have the house to yourself – you’ll be amazed how much easier it is to pamper yourself without calls up the stairs in search of missing PE kit and packed lunches. If you work, have your bath when the rest of the family have slouched on the sofa? Have dinner in the oven, keep the family at bay with a few light pre-tea snacks and sneak off for a leisurely soak in the tub!