The Ultimate Guide on how to stay organized as a mother. I’ve been a mother for three years and I want to share my organization tools with you. So, you can focus on what’s important in life.
Why is it so important to be organized?
We all feel some kind of mom guilt throughout motherhood!!
Do we spend enough time with the kids? Are we still a good wife? Are we managing the household well? And the list goes on. Wouldn’t you agree?
Also, as a foreign mom, it even goes further! Am I doing a good job teaching them about my roots? My language? Are they connected to my family overseas? If I would write down all the thoughts I had since my children were born this would easily be a 10,000-word blog post.
Therefore, to overcome this cycle of mom guilt we need to get and stay organized. This will help you to focus on the important things in life. And I will show you how:
How to get and stay organized?
Here is the “Ultimate Guide On How To Stay Organized As A Mother.” It doesn’t matter if you are a stay-at-home mom or a working mom. We all face the same hardships, one way or another:
1. You need to plan out your week
Are you wondering how to stay organized? Well, you need to get organized first to stay organized. So let’s start at the beginning:
Look at your/your families day and be honest with yourself.
Look at your daily schedule and evaluate what is going well and what isn’t:
- Are your kids having a hard time getting out of the morning? Yes, plan a little extra time, so nobody ends up being late.
- Is packing lunches taking way too much time in the morning? Try to do it the night before to save some time.
- Are your kids complaining about not having clean clothes in the mornings? Let them take the clothes out the night before. If they are little like my kids do it for them.
- Does your dog take a long time outside in the morning? Let your dog out right after you get up in the morning, so your dog has all the time in the world to do its business outside (this is true for my dog).
See the pattern here? Decide what doesn’t go well and try to come up with a solution. Be honest! Talk to your partner he/she may have a great idea to makes things easier.
Plan out your meals
I know everybody is talking about meal planning and meal preparation. I’m not too crazy about preparing every single meal on Sundays or any other day for that matter. Cooking ahead just creates too much stress in my life. Instead, I prepare better and I’m using simple recipes.
However, I do create a meal plan for the week. It helps me to stay organized and it also reduced my grocery bill by $50 a week. Check out my meal plan and grocery list I created for you. It’s such an easy tool that will help you to stay organized every week.
Hint: Just plan out your week. I noticed that planning out every meal and snacks helped me to stay on track with healthy eating.
Decide what you want to accomplish around the house/yard
Also, my husband and I discuss our schedule at the beginning of the week and decide what we want to accomplish for the week.
For instance, my husband decides he needs three hours to move the lawn and cut the bushes. Most likely, I will try to schedule a playdate for the kids. The other way around, I would tell my husband I need some time to deep clean the bathrooms and he will take the kids to the playground.
Talking it through helps us to stay organized. More importantly, it helps us not to be surprised by each other’s plans. Instead, we know about the other persons’ goal and we can schedule around it.
To be honest, I used to be upset with my husband when he suddenly announced he wanted to move the lawn and the kids and I were bored at home. Now, I can plan and avoid such disappointment.
2. Stay on top of your household
Ha, easier said than done. 😉
Pick a task every day that you can realistically accomplish.
Monday through Fridays I make sure the house is somewhat clean.
- I load and unload the dishwasher every day.
- Vacuuming every two days and mope the floors
- The kids and I go through every room 15ms before my husband gets home and just pick up so it “looks” clean (this helps so much and it doesn’t take long)
- I make the beds every day
Saturdays, I clean the floors and surfaces.
- 2-3 times a month I deep clean the bathrooms on top of it
And on Sunday I do laundry.
- my husband likes to do yard work on Sundays after church. So, I only do laundry that day.
This schedule works perfectly for me. Splitting up tasks helps me to stay on top of it all. Again, be honest with yourself. If Sundays don’t work for you make Saturday your laundry day.
However, what I noticed is that when the kitchen and floors are clean the whole house appears so much cleaner.
3. Grocery shopping
I usually take my children grocery shopping and have them help me with the list.
For instance, my oldest chooses items for me and puts them in the shopping cart. I point out all the items in German and it helps her and even the baby with their language skills. Win = Win!!!
Now, she is only three, but she is very helpful. I do pick out fruit and vegetables after she points them out to make sure they are fresh. Delicate items we put in the shopping cart together.
I keep my 1-yr old happy by feeding her a snack. Always pack snacks Mamas! 🙂
Try to have fun, while going grocery shopping.
Hint: Most stores play happy music dance with your kids if the aisle is empty. 🙂 My kids love it and have so much fun.
Everyone who knows me knows how much I love to-do-lists.
I have a short-term and a long-term to-do-lists and I also create one for special events.
Let me explain further. My short-term list includes things I want to accomplish for the week, such as scheduling a doctors appointment, paying a bill, or buying a birthday present.
Long-term lists are things I want to accomplish in the next year or so. My biggest one is to apply for dual citizenship. And applying for a specific masters program, which includes preparing for the GRE.
Special event lists are usually birthday parties, baptisms and such. That helps me to plan a well-organized event for my family.
How to write a to-do-list
Prioritize tasks! Do not start with a task just because you like to do it. Make sure you start with something that needs to get done. I’m so guilty of that. I have gotten a lot better over time though.
So, start your list with things that need to get done immediately. That is true for every list.
If a task includes a lot of extra steps or things you need to think of creating its list will help you to stay organized. Like, grocery shopping for example. This task deserves its own list.
I use my iPhone “Notes” for my to-do-lists. It’s handy and you can check them when accomplished. There is no better feeling than to check something off your list.
It may not seem very helpful, but…
You can organize your whole life by writing a to-do-list. I’m not exaggerating.
Also, I have a list about things I want to accomplish in life and I check that list at least ones a month. This blog was one of the points I wanted to accomplish in life. Here I am! 😉
I think the most crucial part about to-do-lists is that you have to think about the importance of specific tasks. Only you can decide what’s truly important in your life! Wouldn’t you agree?
5. Live in the moment
This is by far my favorite and most essential part of it all. Live in the moment! When I complete a “task” be there 100%.
For instance, when I go grocery shopping I embrace this task. I try to find the best deals while teaching my kids about groceries. I do not worry about anything else on my list… It won’t get done that way anyway!
Therefore, when I spend time with my family I don’t worry about applying for citizenship or any other tasks. My family deserves my undivided attention. This also allows me to focus on teaching my kids about my culture and my language. Because I decided to take the time and not to worry about other things at that moment. Check out my 8 stress-free steps to learn your kids a foreign language.
Give it you’re all!! Be there. Embrace it!
You want to be organized for yourself and your family.
Furthermore, I firmly believe that individuals who are organized in life live are more prosperous life. Because they can live in the moment rather than worrying about other things.
Now, I’m not suggesting to go crazy over being/staying organized.
Take it one step at a time.
Take it easy. Don’t change too many things at ones. Try to improve one thing and talk about it. Tell your partner what’s going well and what isn’t. Re-adjust if necessary!
You can do this!