When I found out I was going to be a mum in 2005, one of my biggest excitements (and fantasy!) was the fact that I would be able to finally get some law and order into my house, finally have time to cook well prepared meals! But 9 months after my daughter was born, I was lucky to have the house vacuumed every 3 weeks, we still lived on takeaway VERY regularly and I was frustrated with the whole concept of being a housewife.
A good friend who I confided in totally got where I was at and lent me the book ‘Survival for busy women’ by Emilie Barnes. It absolutely revolutionised my life and the way I organised myself, particularly with mastering my jobs as a housewife and mother as well as a woman in general.
I also acquired strategies from a website known as Flylady which stands for Finally loving yourself. I continually refer to back to those techniques I learned and, when overwhelmed, they help me get back on track quickly.
Several ideas that changed my attitude to being organised were just as important as the ‘how tos’ of being organised.
‘You are not behind, you are just getting started’
When I began Flylady, I kept thinking that there was just too much that I wanted to get done and there was just no way it would ever get done. It is so easy to get overwhelmed. There has to be a starting point and for me it was January 2007. Since implementing the organisational skills I learnt, there have been many moments when I get lax and don’t get things done (mainly due to laziness!) but now I just start a brand new day or hour and soldier on doing little bits to organise myself better. I don’t let the enormity of the whole house or any situation take control… I take control by tackling it in small bits.
‘Don’t put it down, put it away’
Emilie Barnes focuses on this mentality. By putting stuff away we save so much time because we only deal with the item once instead of several times. Having things put away saves so much frustration and time wasting trying to find items.
‘Don’t put off for tomorrow what can be done today’
This I believe is the success to less stress and anxiousness in my life. Why leave things until the last minute when you could get them done earlier? Dealing with something and getting it out of the way means you don’t have it hanging as a guilt until you get it done.
‘I am an example to my children’
My children learn how to be organised through watching me. They take note of everything I do so I have been conscious right through my mothering to ensure they see the positives of organisation. In our busy lives that just seem to get busier and busier, demonstrating to our children that being organised is fun and creates more room for enjoyment is important so they are not stressed.
‘I am blessing myself and my family’
I look at my job as a housewife in a different light. I am not doing chores!!! I am blessing myself and my family through doing the important jobs that need to be done. Flylady emphasises this point a lot and says that even housework done poorly is still a blessing. This has created a new perspective for myself around the house (and a lot less whinging!)
‘Attitude is half the battle in any challenge’
If you want to be more organised, I hope that some of these ideas might help you with perspective and that change might come too. Be kind to yourself in the journey and take small steps.