Not Just Another Time Saving Parenting Post

Any parent can tell you how much work goes into raising children. Having a career and raising a family are both time consuming and take a lot of energy. Any steps that you can take to save time should be considered. I know there are a million sites out there, telling you to do this or that, but the following tips are tried and true for me- and I’m a single mom!

Simple tasks like grocery shopping may need to be done multiple times per week- but you can save hours through the grocery delivery services that more and more stores are using. You choose the items that you want and place them in your “cart.” When you’re done you pay via credit card and set your delivery time.  If you are constantly feeling pressed for time here are a few ideas that can help you and your mate delegate duties and save time:

Take turns

I’m a single mom, and after work I have to go pick up my son from the babysitter five days a week. The traffic is bad during rush hour and sometimes my personal training sessions run a few minutes over because certain clients need more time than others. So I’m constantly rushing to get him and trying to avoid the traffic. If I had the ability to alternate days with someone, I would be able to relax some afternoons and not have to face that commute. I could go home and start cooking dinner earlier.

Since I don’t have that option I have come up with an alternative way to free up time to rest after picking my son up. On Sundays I don’t work; so I use that evening to prepare meals for the rest of the week. I make big pots of vegetables and I’ll bake an entire chicken or pot roast. We eat that night and put the rest up in containers. During the week I make sandwiches from the leftover meat or just make a couple of side dishes to go with it. Not having to prep an entire meal every night has saved me about an hour or more per day.

Outsource

Having a financial advisor or hiring someone to help you file taxes and plan for the future is helpful and saves time. In the long run it can also save you a lot of money. Making mistakes on your tax paperwork can force you to pay money back to the government instead of getting a check. Filling out the paperwork and going over receipts and things like that is pretty time consuming too. Having a trained expert can alleviate that stress, and having someone to help you make smart investments can help your family’s financial future.

Around the home

Let’s be honest with this one, cleaning up the house is not a fun thing to do but it has to be done. The responsibility of that should not fall on one person, or else it would take an entire day up depending on the size of the house. But if you are a single parent of a young child, you really don’t have much of a choice. One thing that I do is take a few minutes daily to do some light cleaning around the house to avoid buildup and the need to dedicate large chunks of time to cleaning up.

Self Induced Anxiety

I was diagnosed many, many years ago with Generalized Anxiety Disorder. I was so painfully shy, which I have told you all about this before, that I couldn’t even walk into a bank or small store by myself without suffering major anxiety issues and sometimes I would just plain refuse to go anywhere alone, even a walk downtown.

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My mother always had a real hard time with this, because I was a teen when this all started happening and I guess, for good reason, she couldn’t understand why I wasn’t able to go into a store by myself. I would literally cry and refuse to do so alone. I hated being that way, I wasn’t happy being that painfully shy but I did get bullied a lot in my teen years from other girls. I had a lot of issues in the family life of things and well of course some issues and battles I was facing simply being a teenager.

Thank heavens I pretty much outgrew the painfully shy days, I still may have days when I don’t feel 100% and it takes a bit more inner strength to get me out of the door to go do something alone, but I at least can do it now.  I have also always been a super fast talker, I don’t know why, I do know most of my father’s side of the family is like this. We all talk really fast paced and ramble on and on. I do see a lot of that side of the family in myself.

I have been going to counseling with the ex husband and we have been facing some various personal topics, one of the topics  is that I am almost creating my own anxiety with the fast paced talking I do. You see the more I talk the more overwhelmed I feel, the more tight my muscles and jaw get, the faster my heart races and the less I breath.

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It seems I simply talk in circles and keep going but don’t have much feeling behind the conversation because I am cutting off all energy at the neck. I am more aware of this and can literally feel myself almost choking on my own words. It’s an awful feeling, but I am trying to be more conscious of how fast I talk and slow myself down. It’s not easy, it is extremely difficult to teach yourself to be different and react differently to situations.

I know I can slow myself down because heck I have changed so much about me over the years that simply changing how fast my brain and mouth move seems simple compared to other changes I have made. If merely slowing myself down can help me embrace the outside world, 50 years from now I have less of a chance finding myself glued to the PartyBingo.com screen in the basement for hours, and more of a chance of being and active and exploratory elderly person. It seems taking nightly walks is helping slow me down, I am feeling more, I have more internal energy and I don’t feel as anxious about life and such.

So this week I have learned that simply getting out of the house to take a walk helps me slow down in my head which in turn creates a more calm version of me. I am loving that I am learning some things about myself as well as learning what helps me to calm and relax after a long day of dealing with work at home and kids.

What is your relaxation method? What helps you feel at ease?

Feeding From Other People’s Energy

I am taking some time to find me again, it seems I was lost somewhere. Don’t ask where because I don’t know. All that I know is I am off balance again, this happens with a particular relationship but not friendships. I do well with some people and not so well with others. I don’t mean to say these people I don’t do well with are bad people, after all most of the people I know and/or have dated are really decent people. It’s simply a matter of fact that I feed off of other people’s energy. I have a more positive energy usually, but when I am around someone who doesn’t have a similarly positive energy force behind them I get sucked dry of my balance and positive energy.

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Lately I have been feeling off centered, fighting with depression type feelings and the fight is insane to move up and away from this energy that is pulling me down. Without going into too much detail, there are times in my life when I feel so awesome, I have an open heart, mind and soul, the positive energy flourishes and I am smiling more often than not. In the past few months or so my mouth has started to turn downward… like a frown, permanently implanted on my face. This is not me. I am usually happy and my lips tend to curve slightly upwards from smiling so much.

I am at my happiest when I am surrounded by supportive, giving and positive people and energy sources. Energy comes from music, people and weather. A rainy day you tend to feel a bit more lazy and gloomy especially if it is a dark cloudy rainy day. Sunshine comes out and the breeze is just right, this makes you feel warm, fuzzy and you smile more. At least this is how I feel.

I am at my happiest when I don’t have to get upset with another person in my life not helping in the way I feel they should. I work many hours from home as both a mom and a self employed professional woman. I don’t need to be also doing all of the household chores, all of the taking care of children tasks and draining my positive mindset. You see, I do my best when I am with someone who gives and takes. I am a give and take kind of person but when I start being surrounded with people who simply take or are just there then my energy level gets depleted and slowly my personal foundation crumbles.

So if you say who a person is with shouldn’t affect who they are, then you are correct and wrong. So many of us are prone to want to “keep the family together” or let our own needs, wants and desires sit on the back burner because we are parents. Well sorry to say this, everyone, I seriously refuse to set anything that is important to me on the back burner. My well being and my most happiest of times are vitally important to the success of my children turning out happy, healthy and well rounded.

I am at my happiest when surrounded by like minded individuals who are motivated and hold a positive energy force within them. That is my simply being happy moment.

What is it that makes you happiest, and I mean happiest in your heart, mind and soul?

Speaking of a Vacation Idea

Not that long ago I had been discussing that I am ready for a vacation, and with Summer just around the corner here in NH I know I long for a few days away. I was checking out the site http://avistaresort.com that has Ocean Front rentals, and wow can you imagine staying in a Myrtle Beach Hotel for even just one night?

Oh I can, for sure and if I wasn’t afraid of flying and had the extra finances to spend on a vacation I would certainly look into one of the resorts in Myrtle Beach. Amazing, beautiful scenery or so it appears that way based on the pictures from the website.  Sometimes a family or a parent needs to just get away to a new place for a change of scenery and relax the mind so that they can come home to a refreshed mind and feel ready to move forward in their life. Now that is what I am ready for …. a relaxing the mind good time! Are you ready?

I wonder what the perfect vacation would be for you all? Do you like going out to a camp ground and staying a weekend or week with your children there? Are you more into the “family vacations” or a bit of both; meaning that you enjoy time with your loved one or alone on vacation as well as taking a family trip over the Summer? Has this Summer changed your family plans due to finances or are you still doing what your family normally does during Summer time?

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Walking on Egg Shells

I admit I walk on egg shells when it comes to some of my family members and people I shouldn’t even associate with. I have a hard time being assertive I guess the word is. It could also be that I worry about what others will think deep inside my head even though I walk around telling myself I don’t care what others think about me and my life.

I am working hard at coming to terms with being a single Mom, I am working hard at knowing I am truly happy with the decisions that have been made to create the life I am living now. I know in my heart this is what I want but a small part of me is stressing about what others will think of me, if I will hurt other peoples feelings by following my own heart and I will be honest my body is taking a toll. I lay down to sleep and worry so much that my stomach starts hurting and when I wake up I am usually really sick. The stress from worrying is creating health issues and of course I don’t have health insurance, although I did apply for a program and got coverage so I have to look into that a little bit more and see what it entails for approved services.

I have to be at my best for my children and when they are home I focus on them the best I can but a small part of me is missing because I hide some of my personal life happiness from others, why? Because I fear … I fear that I will hurt someones feelings or I will get negative feedback from some of my family. I don’t know why at age 28 I still walk on egg shells and act as if I am a child. I don’t know why some of my family still talks to me as if I am a child, probably because no matter how old a person gets our elders will look to us as their “baby” forever. I know I probably will look to my children as my “babies” even when they are grown adults.

What I do feel is that even when my children are adults and I am looking to them as my “babies” still I know that I will support their decisions and be there to pick up the pieces should they fall down and get hurt. I know I will be there no matter what my personal opinion is, I know that I will tell my personal feelings about a situation without judgement and negative feedback. I will let my “babies” know that they are living their life and Mama is here to be by their side through the ups and downs. Some days I wish I had that kind of support and less negative feedback. Some people have placed me on some high horse with expectations no living person could live up to and yet instead of sticking up for the facts as they are, I hide away and don’t open up to some of my family and friends.

Today is a new day, it’s time to start telling the world how happy I am and let them spew their negative on someone else. I won’t take the negative any longer, unless someone wants to provide me with productive feedback and opinions based on a non-judgmental attitude then I don’t want to hear it. If someone wants to know what I am doing, how I am doing then stop reading my Facebook wall to keep up; how about you call me, stop by and see how happy I am now … how the smile on my face continues to grow larger as each day of my new found happiness continues. And if you can’t handle taking a moment of your time to stop by and say hello and see how my life is so much happier, then maybe I don’t need to take time out of my happy life to be a part of yours.

I understand family life gets busy, we all have to work more and more as prices of life increase, but still take the time to call a loved one today, ask them how they are doing, truly feel happy for their happiness even if you do not approve or understand why they are happy. Family and friends are suppose to support each other without judgment, without blame and without negative comments.

Remember when you are talking to others, whether they be friends or family, that you have a right to be proud of who you are and where your life has led you even if no one else understands or can be supportive about it!

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