Surviving the End of the School Year Freefall

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Dear Mom,

Hang tight. The last few weeks of school is the second toughest time of the year (after December). Between the dance recitals, end of the year banquets, end of course testing, teacher gifts, and warm weather excitement, our kids are going crazy. They are not following the rules. They are more hyper than usual. They are done.

And, you are likely done too. The good mom you were in September is long gone. The mom improvement goal you made in January lasted until Valentine’s Day. The mom who volunteered to bring fancy treats for school parties is now rushing to be the first one to sign up for paper plates. We are over it. We have used up all of our fun and shiny goodness, and now we are done.

But, school is not over yet! We have a few more weeks to get the kids out the door on time with homework done and lunches packed. We may not do it perfectly, but we can do it. We can make it to the finish line without losing our minds.

Here’s how we can get it done.

Stick to the Routine

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The routine has gotten you this far – don’t throw it out now. Keep doing what works. For example, the sun is up a little later, but school starts at the same time in the morning. So, keep bedtime as close to the same time as you have all year.

But Expect a Little Less

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If you feel done, just imagine how your little people feel! When you are tired, it is hard to do everything with the same energy as usual. So, yes, stick to your routine, but extend the kids some grace when they don’t act exactly the way you wish they would. Show a little more patience.

Write Every Important Date Down

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Like December, the end of the school year calendar is jam-packed. In order to stay on top of everything and not forget when your kids need to take this test or be at this banquet, you need to write everything down as soon as you receive a notification.

Purchase the Teachers the End of the Year Gift They Deserve

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With all the busyness of this time of year, don’t forget to purchase a gift for your child’s teacher. These men and women go above and beyond (and aren’t paid nearly enough). Give them something that shows you’ve seen all the hard work they’ve done this year and how much you appreciate them. Go ahead and buy it now before you end up rushing out the night before the last day of school.

Have a Family Countdown

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If your kids are clearly ready for school to end and summer to begin, make a family countdown. Count down the days left while encouraging them to stay strong to the finish. Make it a whole family affair and then celebrate when summer officially begins.

Take Time to Breathe

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Finally, take time to breathe. Look for little pockets of time where you can rest and relax. Remind yourself that this busyness is just for a season. Summer is coming soon.

9 Time Management Tips to Help Busy Moms Avoid Burnout

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Mom friends, do you feel like there just aren’t enough hours in the day? It is totally normal to feel this way! We all go through a season where we never have enough time to get everything on our to-do lists checked off. But, you don’t have to live that way forever.

Here’s the truth. I am not the best mom, wife, employee, or friend when I am burnt out. When I am exhausted, everyone is affected. As a result, I have had to learn to manage my time before that happens.

All moms need breathing room. They need space in their days – even if it is just fifteen minutes here and there. But, if you don’t learn to manage your time, you will struggle to find even fifteen minutes. Don’t let this be you! Instead, here are some tried and true ways to help busy working moms avoid burnout.

Look closely at how you spend your time.

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Before you come up with a whole new time management plan for yourself, you have to evaluate how you actually spend your time. For the next week, chart what you do hour by hour. Then, you can begin to see where you need to make some changes.

If you are like me, you will discover that there are huge chunks of wasted time in your day. You may also be relieved to find you aren’t crazy – you really do spend hours in the car driving your kids from school to practice to play dates.

Avoid the social media time suck.

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I know I am not the only mom who has fallen victim to the social media time suck. Without even realizing it, I waste so much time scrolling through Instagram or watching other people’s stories. While I love social media, I have come to realize I need to limit the amount of time I spend on it. Need help with your social media addiction? There are apps for that.

Set daily goals. Set weekly goals. Set monthly goals.

If you are not in the habit of making goals or creating to-do lists, that has got to change. One of the most effective ways to manage my time comes from setting goals and using lists to reach these goals. But, be realistic. What can you actually accomplish today without burning out? What can you put off until later in the week?

Prioritize your health.

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Moms, we are so bad about prioritizing our health. But, when mommy doesn’t feel good, everyone in our home suffers. So, try your hardest to get enough sleep and exercise – and make healthy eating choices. Choose the food that will give you lasting energy instead of the caffeine that will give you a short burst.

Learn the power of the word NO.

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Here’s another hard one for moms. You have to learn to say no. You cannot do everything for everyone. It is okay to say “no” when the PTA comes calling, or your neighbor needs a favor. Saying “no” does not make you a bad person.

Ask for (and accept) help.

Likewise, you should learn to ask for help when you need – and then accept it! If you want to manage your time, you will need to delegate tasks to the rest of your family. As your kids get older, they can help you out even more. But, in the meantime, ask friends and family for help when you feel like you have reached the end of your rope.

Outsource whatever you can.

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If it is in your budget, outsource whatever you can. Choose a meal delivery service or use a grocery delivery service. You will be amazed at how much time you save by simply not having to do the grocery shopping!

Organize your daily routine.

We all have time management issues that occur over and over again. For example, do you have a hard time finding your keys or purse in the morning? Do your kids always seem to be losing their shoes? Create a station by the door with the things you need to grab right before you walk out the door. This also becomes the landing spot when you get home. Purse, keys, bookbags, all go in the same spot each day. Simply getting rid of the morning search and rescue for necessities will be a major time saver.

Use time management apps.

Before we go today, I encourage you to invest in a time management app. You know what works best for you. Some moms find using timers for everything helps to keep their families on task. Other families use list sharing apps. Find an app that works for you – and use it!