5 Things I Do Each Day to Handle What’s On My Plate

Every day I have A LOT on my plate. My to-do list could go on forever and, on top of it, I have to carve out time for my relationship with my husband and for four little humans who rely on me to be fed, loved, played with, taught and guided.

mom reading to children

Every once in a while I will attempt to wrap my mind around all the responsibilities I have as a mom, a wife and a business owner, and I will feel a little panic set in. But before I succumb to the voice inside my head that says, “it’s too much, you are sinking,” I take these steps and I know that I can get through the day.

To keep myself in-sync, and make sure my mind and body are perfectly in line, I take these five steps:

  1. Routine
  2. Assess
  3. Prioritize
  4. Gain Perspective
  5. Pamper

Routine. I am all about routine. In fact, my whole family is, and at times we can feel a little off on weekends or on holiday. So the days that we don’t have school drop-offs creating structure, I still keep a routine in place. That includes me waking up before everyone else and working out and showering, ensuring we have meals around the same time each day, building quiet time for everyone into our day and sticking to the same bedtimes. When there are six members in the family, I find routine vital for each of us.

working out

Assess. Those moments when I can feel my to-do list strangling me, and the panic setting in, I know it is time to assess my life, especially my workload. I heard something so simple recently, but it made such an impact on my work life: “Take every project you are working on and visualize them all in front of you. If there is something that you don’t love, take that off your plate.” That is a motto I now live by and it has changed my world. Assess your workload and assess your relationships on a regular basis. You may be surprised by what is bringing you down and realize that it is okay to let some stuff go.

Prioritize. I love to-do lists. Seriously, they are like air to me. I have tried lots of fancy apps and organizers, but in the end a simple pad of lined paper makes for the best to-do list. Each day I split my page in two. The first list is what must get done; the second list is if I have time. I then number each item by priority and start hacking away, feeling a rush as I cross out each item.

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Gain perspective. I talk to myself. No, really I do. All day long. I keep an inner dialogue going with myself, which may sound like I have fallen off my rocker, but, really, it’s to keep me in check. I am constantly asking myself, “how are you feeling?” I will have little conversations with myself in my head making plans about how I am going to tackle a problem and how big a deal I am going to make about each obstacle. When I feel myself getting too out of sync, I reach out and talk to my husband or my mom, asking them whether I am being unreasonable. Often I realize that my problem may not be as big as I have made it out to be.

Pamper. I think constantly pampering myself is probably the most effective way I am able to stay in sync with my inner self and achieve my daily goals. I pamper myself by exercising in the morning, taking the time to do my hair and put makeup on, or carving out a rest with a yummy snack each day. Making healthy choices that make me feel better helps me have the energy and mental clarity to tackle everything on my plate. When I am really falling out of sync, I take a hot bath or go get a massage.

mother reading bookThe thing is, I have learned over the years that if I am not in in sync with my inner self, I will start sinking, and before I can give anything to any of my family, or tackle a looming deadline, I have to take care of myself. It’s only when you feel totally in sync with your core that you can harness your greatest potential.

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