Are you guilty of overscheduling?
Is busy just part of being a mom and an entrepreneur? Or is it possible to raise well rounded, activity immersed children AND create a success business without feeling overwhelmed? This week we are talking how to avoid overscheduling your life…both as a mom and as an entrepreneur.
Moms LOVE to say yes. We love to be involved. And we love to help. We hate to feel like we are letting people down. Especially our kids. BUT what happens when all those yeses compound to create a schedule that feels stressful and overwhelming? An anxious, stressed-out, overstimulated, unfulfilled mom entrepreneur is what happens. But we’re going to fix that.
When you actively work to control your schedule rather than letting it control you, you will find that there is time and space for what you truly value. For the priorities you’ve set for yourself, your business, and your family. And whatever fear or struggle you had in letting go of the events that don’t tick those boxes will dissipate quickly as you bask in the new found time and energy you’ve created by protecting yourself.
When you utilize the 3 steps I give you today, you take back control. You stop worrying about letting people down or disappointing your PTA or volunteer group or children and start making decisions about your time that focus on your values, your goals and your priorities. Both for your family and for your business.
If you’re usually a “yes” mom and you’re thinking “there is no way I can change my schedule. This is just the way it is going to be until my kids get older. Or until I can hire help. Or no one else can do it like me.” I have a truth bomb for you. You can make a change and stand up for the life you want. Or you can continue to complain and live that life that everyone else wants from you. Your choice.
When you stand up for your time, your values, your goals, and your dreams, you will start to see your life align. You can spend time fulfilling your vision with the creative energy you previously spent fulfilling someone else’s vision. And you can reallocate the time and effort you applied to reach someone else’s goal to your goals.
You’ll find ways to fill your cup, whether it’s for personal or business reasons, on a daily basis because you stop or limit what you are pouring out to others.
You can show up present at your child’s event without thinking about the other 100 things you have to do when you don’t dilute your energy. And you can devote focused effort to an organization you feel truly passionate about rather than giving the bare minimum to help them succeed. You and your family will start to see that less truly is more when it comes to your schedule.
Avoiding Overscheduling is About Knowing
Resetting your busy life is all about “knowing”. We are going to know where we need to be, know what space we need around that activity, and say no to tasks or projects that no longer align with our values or goals.
The first step to avoid overscheduling is to know your schedule. And to be honest, this is the task where you mamas are killing it. Most of you maintain some sort of family and business calendar so kudos to you. Where I see struggles start to arise with clients and in my community is when those calendars stay in separate places. Like when we schedule a meeting until 4 when soccer pick up is at 4:30.
This leads us to our second step to avoid overscheduling which is knowing the space we need around the activity. We know soccer practice ends at 4:30. We know we have a meeting until 4. And we know it takes 20 minutes to get to soccer. That’s running it pretty close if the meeting runs over. Or if there’s traffic. Or you can’t find your keys. What you need is margin. Or a buffer zone.
A huge factor in the anxiety we feel is the continuous slamming of activity into activity is. There is no transition time. We need breathing room. Do you have a transition or buffer space when you look at the schedules for you, your business, your kids, and your spouse layered on top of each other? If not, it may not be the actual number of activities that is causing you to feel overwhelmed, but the fact that there is never a minute to catch your breath in between.
And if you’re saying “Well, there’s nothing I can do about that, it’s just how it is.” That brings us to our third way of knowing which is actually N-Oing noing. Saying no more often. Protecting your time and energy by choosing tasks and activities that align with your goals rather than rushing to something your aren’t passionate about. Telling your kids “no” to the 17th activity they want to add when you feel like your evenings are spent as a chauffeur. Telling your clients “no” I can’t have a call at 8pm because that is my family time.
It’s gonna feel uncomfortable. I know, I’ve been there. You’re going to feel like you’re letting people down. But you are the decider when it comes to where you spend your time and how you expend your energy. Let’s stand up for our priorities, values, and goals rather than letting others dictate our day or free time.
Ok…I know that might ruffle few feathers out there, but if you are feeling that, it may be because you know there needs to be a change. Change is often uncomfortable. And hard. But a year from now, do you want to be proud of the leaps you’ve made in your business and personal life or stuck in the same stressful schedule cycle of overscheduling? If you’re ready to take action, I want you to take a look at your schedule. See how your commitments overlap or butt up to one another. See where you can build in some margin or a buffer zone to allow for transition from one activity to the next. And see where you can say no to build in space for your projects and goals as well as slowing the frantic pace of zooming from one activity to the next.