You know what they say: if you want something done, give it to a busy person. And many times, that busy person is a busy mom. But it’s easy for the passionate, concerned mom to become so inundated with family, work and volunteer obligations that she’s stretched too thin. But how do you say “no” to things you believe in?
Today, we’re suggesting that instead of saying “no,” you should try, “not now” more often. It doesn’t load your plate with another commitment, but it doesn’t completely shut the door on future involvement, either. With so many needs around us each day, we could all use a system for prioritizing commitments. So take a look at our 10 Priorities of a Mom:
1. Her Relationship With God. If a spiritual foundation isn’t one of your firm priorities, you’ll struggle in every area of your life. Feed your soul with prayer and bible study!
2. Her Relationship With Her Husband. A wise man once said that the “greatest gift a man can give his children is to love their mother.” Well—it works in reverse, too. Loving your husband and investing in your marriage relationship pays dividends for the whole family, so no mom-guilt is required for pushing your marriage to the top of the list!
3. Her Relationships With Her Children. Notice that this one isn’t about caring for your kids, it’s about building relationships with them. Relationships take time, and lots of conversation. Make sure you leave enough margin in your day for that to happen with your kids.
4. Her Personal Health & Wellness. Taking care of yourself physically is important. Don’t think of it as taking time away from your other priorities, but as enabling your body to keep up the good work in every area of life! And remember—sleep is the most often overlooked key to wellness, so get your rest.
5. Caring For Her Family & Home. Once you’ve paid attention to relationships in your family, caring for them in the practical sense is the next step. This is where organizational skills and time management can help you do your best for those you love. Healthy meals and an orderly—not perfect—home are the key goals here.
6. Her Career. If you’re a working woman, you may laugh at the idea of your job coming in at number six. But truly, how can it be any more important than your faith, family relationships, personal health or home life? It’s not. So take pride in achieving great things in your field from 9 to 5, but don’t let your career unintentionally take the place of one of those fundamentals.
7. Her Relationships With Friends/Extended Family. Taking time to nurture relationships and spend time with good friends and loved ones is good for the soul. While it shouldn’t take precedence over your husband and kids, it’s still a good thing.
8. Her Church and Volunteer Opportunities. This is a tough one, because there are so many worthy causes and genuine needs out there. But don’t be tempted to push these tasks in front of the top priorities, or the cart you’re pulling will quickly feel out of balance.
9. Looking Her Best. It’s a fact: how you look affects how you feel, and can even influence how others respond to you at work and at home. Spending time on your appearance isn’t all narcissistic fluff. You don’t have to look like the cover of a magazine, just aim for a fit, pulled-together, up-to-date version of you.
10. Her Down Time. We all have our favorite ways to relax, whether it’s hitting the tennis court, getting together with the girls or settling in for an evening of quiet reading. When time allows, treat yourself to something just for you!
So if you’re trying to figure out how to prioritize in your life, let the list above help you get started.