Being a stay at home mom is an amazing experience, but it’s also tiring, and it’s easy for your time to escape from you. Sometimes, it feels like you lose hours at a time, and the things you want to get done, never get completed. That’s why SAHMs need time management tips to use their time as wisely as possible.
I love being a stay at home mom, but in the beginning, I often felt like I was unable to get things done throughout my house. Our home was a mess, and each night, I went to bed feeling wore down.
Why couldn’t I get things done? I have plenty of time, but the hours were draining away. Social media sucked me into my phone for hours or my efforts to multitask failed. I felt like I should be able to be more productive in the daytime, so I started researching time management tips and created a routine that worked for me.
I wanted to share some of those time management tips that worked the best for me as a stay at home mom.
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Related: A Simple Stay at Home Mom Cleaning Schedule That Really Works
16 Time Management Tips for Stay at Home Moms
1. Wake Up Early Before Your Kids
It’s tempting to sleep in every single day with your kids, like it’s always the weekend with no time card to punch. Your kids become your alarm clock; when they wake up, you wake up.
However, if time management is truly a focus for your days, then you will want to make sure you set an alarm and wake up early before your kids each day. Waking up before your kids gives you more time to get things done.
A person in motion stays in motion, as long as you are taking care of your body.
Waking up early gives you plenty of benefits, according to experts, such as:
- More productivity with more waking work hours and fewer interruptions.
- Time to relax in the evening.
- Better sleep quality.
- More time to exercise.
- Less stress and anxiety.
2. Have a Morning Routine
One of the keys to have a productive day as a stay at home mom is to have a morning routine. Everyone, whether or not you know it, loves routines; your brain appreciates the structure, and it helps you become more productive when you have morning tasks to make your life easier.
Here are some ideas to include in your morning routine for stay at home moms.
- Drink your coffee – this is ESSENTIAL.
- Put away the dishes in the dishwasher
- Start a load of laundry
- Make your bed
- Take a shower
- Start breakfast
- Exercise for 15 to 30 minutes
- Write out your important daily tasks
Related: 14 Easy Tips for How to Be a Happy Stay at Home Mom
3. Get an Evening Routine
I know how easy it is to drop into the couch after getting the kids to bed and passing out, but if you have an evening routine checklist, you’ll feel so much better about your time management.
Your evening routine doesn’t have to be long, and in my experience, it’s best that it’s not long, or you’ll end up not wanting to do it. All it takes is 15 minutes to get yourself set up for a successful tomorrow.
Here are some things to include in your evening routines with or without your kids.
- Kids pick up their toys before heading to bed.
- All dinner dishes are put into the dishwasher and turned on with counters wiped clean before closing down the kitchen for the day.
- Pick up the floor so your robot vacuum can run throughout the nighttime.
- Fold blankets and put pillows on the couch.
- Start a new load of laundry into the washer to be transferred to the dryer in the morning.
- Make sure the coffee pot is ready for the morning.
4. Get Dressed Every Day
I know how tempting it is to stay in your pajamas all day, and who wants to add more clothes to the laundry pile? However, when you look up time management tips, you always see that you should get dressed every day.
It’s all a mental thing. When you stay in your pajamas, you tend to be lazy and want to spend the day on the couch, which is fine on some days. It’s easier to be productive when you get dressed for the day, even if it’s a new pair of clean leggings and a comfortable shirt.
5. Grab a Favorite Planner
You need something to keep yourself organized, and to be honest, I’ve tried so many different planners. Organization is key to getting the most out of your days and not feeling like you are constantly falling behind.
You have a lot of options to consider, and you may prefer a digital planner. A lot of mothers use Trello to organize their family life, or you can use a simple notebook to keep track of what needs to be done.
I suggest trying a few different options to see which one you prefer the most.
6. Have Daily Tasks & Do Those First
We always have an endless to-do list as stay at home mother, but you need to have daily tasks. These are your most important six tasks that need to be done for the day.
My daily tasks are based on the day. For example, Mondays are the day that I clean the bathrooms and wash all the bathroom towels. This goes into my daily tasks along with the tasks that I know help our house run smoothly.
7. Create a Schedule
Setting a schedule is one of the most important things you can do for time management for stay at home moms. You need goals and tasks to complete each day. If you aim at nothing, you hit nothing, every time – right?
I suggest you create a simple daily schedule, a plan for the day, and you’ll learn what you can accomplish each day.
Related: How to Make Your Stay at Home Mom Schedule
8. Learn How to Time Block
Time blocking is a great way to be productive throughout the day. When you time block, you focus on a specific activity for a certain amount of time.
A great thing about time blocking is that it teaches you to write down things that you forget about regularly. You create blocks for eating lunch, taking your kids to the school, and exercising. It’s easy to forget to add these things to our calendars, and they throw off your schedule easily.
When you time block, you want to fill every hour, even if it’s binging Netflix.
9. Don’t Let Laundry Pile Up
Some people tell you that you should only do laundry once per week, but I can tell you that’s an easy way to let the laundry monster pile up. Having a huge load of laundry staring at you is never good for your time management.
Once your kids are old enough, teach them to put their own laundry away to reduce your overwhelming to-do list. You also can teach your older kids to run the washing machine.
10. Set Time Each Month to Plan Ahead
I set aside a time each month for planning ahead of time. You can use this time to plan traveling trips, holiday parties, get together with plans, and steps to take to meet goals.
It’s easy for things to creep up ahead of you, but if you take time at the end or start of each month, you’ll stay on top of your calendar and events you may need to remember.
11. Limit Your Social Media Time
Social media may be something that we all enjoy, but it’s tempting and sucks time out of your day. Some experts suggest deleting social media apps or setting time limits per day because it’s so easy to get sucked into the apps.
You start by looking at new pictures your friends posted or watching a few TikTok videos. The next thing you know, an hour passed by, and you lost valuable time.
12. Stop Trying to Multi-Task
Some people swear that multitasking is the way to go, but it’s truly impossible to multitask when we are already having to take care of kids while getting tasks done throughout the day. Set time blocks or increments when you will focus on one task before starting the new one. Don’t try to split your attention between multiple tasks.
13. Only Grocery Shop Once Per Week
I used to go to the grocery store multiple times per week because I forgot ingredients for dinners or lunches, but I realized how much time this is taking up in my calendar. So, I started learning how to meal plan, picking the meals I wanted to make ahead of time. Then, I shopped once per week.
Not only does shopping once per week save you time, but it also saves you time. I know I always grab little extras when I stop at the store, and if you do this multiple times per week, then you’re spending even more money than needed.
14. Budget & Pay Bills Once a Week
Something else that you need to do is take care of your finances once per week. Finances cause families a lot of stress, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by them.
I suggest starting a budget and picking one day a week to make sure everything is staying in track. You’ll know ahead of time if you have extra money for different activities in the upcoming week or a few extra stops at Chic-FiI-A.
Use this time to pay bills as well, making sure everything is paid on time. You don’t want to worry about missing bills.
15. Set a Timer for Tasks
Watching the clock when you’re trying to be productive causes you to lose more time. If you want to clean your kitchen for 20 minutes, set a timer and work until the timer goes off. This is called the Pomodoro technique, and it helps you stay on top of things.
The Pomodoro Technique works, and this focuses on using the time you do have rather than trying to get more time out. You work for 20-25 minute time blocks with 5-10 minute intervals. If you only have one block, then you only do one block, or if you have multiple, you work in multiple blocks.
The idea behind this technique is that setting a timer gives you a sense of urgency, and people tend to push aside those common distractions, knowing they only have so long to get a task completed.
This technique is also great for those who don’t like cleaning. If you’re always wondering when you’ll be finished, a timer lets you know that it won’t be forever until you can stop.
16. Don’t Spend Every Day in the House – But Stay Home Too!
It’s important to stay at home so that you can complete your necessary tasks, but staying at home all the time is damaging at times for you. Try going to the library, meeting your friends for a play date, join a local MOPS group, enjoy a local Bible study, and run errands.
Use these tasks as motivators to get more done. If you finish your tasks, you get to take your kids somewhere, but make sure it’s not everywhere.
Being a stay at home mom is one of the most amazing things we can do as a mother, but it’s also frustrating at times. Use these time management tips to keep on track and keep your days happy for everyone.