Homestead Redhead How To: Not Lose Your Mind
The past five years of my life have been nothing short of insane. I work a ton of hours at two different Emergency Rooms, maintain a committed relationship, take care of a farm, in the process of building a house, take care of a household, write a blog, and a few hundred more things squeezed in there.
I think folks today are under more pressure than ever to balance more than their share of responsibilities and are expected to make it look effortless. Let me tell you, balancing as much as I do is definitely not effortless. There are days that I am so exhausted I can’t seen straight and would much rather sit in my car and cry about everything I have to get done than clock in to work for the 15th day in a row.
However, that is typically not the option I choose, and over the years have figured out a few things along the way to balance such a crazy life.
If you are feeling overwhelmed in your life, let me share a few tips on how I have not completely lost my redheaded mind over the last few years.
- Get organized. This is definitely the place to start. Make a list of your responsibilities, to do’s and a create a schedule. I love the Erin Condren planners, I have used these for years and it is a fun way to stay organized. They can be a little pricey, but sometimes you can Google a coupon.
- Cut it. Take a hard look at your responsibilities. If there is something that is causing way more stress than it is worth and isn’t absolutely vital to life-cut it! Life is short and it flies by-you don’t want to look back and regret spending years on something that brought zero joy.
- A few minutes every day. Pinterest is slammed full of methods to keep a clean house. For me personally, I do a little laundry and a few dishes most every day. Although this can get a bit tedious, it makes me feel much more together when the sink isn’t piled full with dishes and the bedroom isn’t covered in dirty uniforms. Just a few minutes every day keeps these necessary household tasks manageable.
- Crock Pot cooking. I feel very strongly that it is one of my duties to cook healthy, nutritious meals for my family. I also work 12 hour night shifts several times a week. So how do these two things go together you might ask? The most wonderful invention ever-the crock pot. I adore the crock pot and when I am working, I cook in one of my two crock pots every day. I come home, throw some yummy ingredients together, season it, press a button and drag my tail to bed. I wake up to the house smelling delicious, I have dinner to bring to work and Neil has a hot meal to come home to. Win, win! (HR tip: Make sure you purchase a crock pot that automatically goes to a “warm” setting-this way if you don’t get home in time it keeps the food warm while not cooking it too long)
- Take care of yourself. I think particularly women have a hard time remembering this. I know personally I have lived the last few years rarely making my emotional and physical health a priority and it sure caught up to me this year. I feel that there is so little time in the day to care for myself-between caring for patients, my family, my animals-where is there time leftover for me? I can’t stress how vital it is to take even just a few minutes every day for yourself. It isn’t easy carving this time out of a already packed schedule, but there are ways to do it. I have utilized my commute time to take a little time out of a hectic schedule to be alone and recharge my caregiver batteries. I listen to books on CD or sing as loud as I want to with the radio or even just turn everything off and enjoy a quiet ride into work. A few other ideas:
- Read a trashy magazine or play a game on your phone while standing in line at the grocery
- Sit in your car for an extra minute before going inside and take a few deep breaths, pray, meditate, listen to the radio or just enjoy the quiet
- Take a bath or if time is really pressed take a few more minutes in the shower, enjoy the hot relaxing water and steady sound of the bathroom fan
- Eat a meal with a friend or alone with a book
There are still days that totally get away from me and days I struggle to go to sleep because my to do list is racing through my mind, but everything is much less overwhelming than it used to be now that I have figured a few things out.
What about you my dear friends? Do you have an tips for managing all the duties life brings these days?
Until next time…