Fact: 85% of women say they don’t have enough time in the day. After finishing work, taking care of the kids, cooking dinner and staying on top of the million other things, it’s natural to feel a little burnt out. Stay on top of your hectic schedule and create some extra time for yourself with these simple organizational tips and tricks.
1. Create a Flexible Calendar
Dentist appointments, piano practice, soccer games – your family’s life can seem like a never ending cycle of activities and errands. Keep track of it all easily with a flexible sticky note calendar. Pin index cards on a large bulletin board to build a monthly calendar. Color code appointments by assigning a color to each member of your family. Clear, clean and easily revisable sticky note calendars can save your family time and energy.
2. Establish a Command Station
When you’ve got a household to run, every minute counts. Research shows, however, that women spend almost an hour everyday looking for lost items. Get that time back by establishing a command station – a place near the entrance of your home to keep necessities in one place: hooks for backpacks and purses, baskets for snacks and school forms, chargers for cellphones and gadgets. Design your station to suit your family’s needs.
3. Employ Kitchen Shortcuts
While the benefits of cooking fresh meals are indisputable it can be extremely time consuming. Home-cooked meals are generally much healthier than packaged foods or take-out. Here are some tricks you can employ to keep your family eating right – even in a pinch:
- On a Sunday evening, make a large batch of soup using a pre-made chicken broth. This soup can be stored in the freezer and easily prepared on busy nights. You can also portion out single serving bags to take with you for lunch.
- Store ground meat in a serving-conscious way: fill a zippered plastic bag with the raw meat and seal. Separate it into equal sections by pressing a chopstick over the bag, tic-tac-toe-style, and then pop it in the freezer. The next time you need ground beef, simply break off enough for the recipe you’re preparing.
- Skip store-bought, processed dressings and marinades. Instead opt for a quick vinaigrette made out of balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, olive oil, salt and pepper. It can be used to dress salads, veggies or meats. Make it once and enjoy for up to 3 months.
Be sure to set aside a little of that extra time to focus on your mental health. With everything you have to do to keep your household running smoothly, you need to schedule 5 minutes a day of peace and quiet for yourself. Put it on the calendar to stay committed.