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Three children *** One big, grey dog *** Two parents *** Country loving *** Cottage dwelling in the South-West of the UK. That’s us!

We’ve been blogging since January 2010.

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Debs Random Writings

More time for me

I’m joining in with Maureen’s Taking Care of Mama Monday, because it just plain resonates with me at the moment. January can be dull, wet, soggy and can make me feel low.  I recognize that it has this effect, so I am taking steps to turn this feeling around. Changing my attitude to January and seeing it in a whole new light!

It is actually the lull before the storm. Christmas is over and the garden planting plan starts at the end of the month. The days may be shorter light-wise, but they can be just as productive for me, in a different way.

So I have a plan. I’ve made a list. First on my list is time. My life is full. I can’t take care of me if I am guilt ridden at the thought of neglecting another area of my life. My roles as mother, wife, pet owner take a large portion of my day, leaving little for just plain, old me. I take these roles seriously and could not just ignore them, so I need to accomplish them in a little less time. I need to win some time. So…..

… last year I discovered “The FlyLady” and bought the book. At the time it was bought with the thought that maybe it would be cheaper than hiring a cleaner. I’m not house proud, but after a decade of renovating the house and asking visitors to mind the trip hazards and not to notice the building chaos, we have come out the other side. It is now possible to keep the house tidy and (ahem) clean. I’m not perfect, but, on the whole I am no longer embarrassed when someone calls unexpectedly.

So far, I have picked up a few tips from the book that I have incorporated into my daily life, but I have not gone for the system full heartedly. I know if I adopted more of the schedule, then I could win time. Yes, I’m sure I could win time. So I’m reinstating meal planning (sorry, Gwinny) and I’m going to make a control journal.

Is this taking care of me? Oh yes! I already know that meal planning and shopping planning will reduce my stress levels. They did last time. I could just leave it at that, but I know that taking control of the mundane stuff will leave me more time to do what I want to do. I’m still looking after everyone else, but me too, which also means that I’m probably doing a better job at looking after them….. and so on.

So the first step at “taking care of mama”, is not only reducing my stress level but also winning me time.

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6 Responses to More time for me

  • Val says:

    What a good idea..January and February have always been inclined to be downer Months..after Christmas Flat , dark and gloomy and Spring is not yet close enough to grasp so resistance and energy (and mood) can descend with a veritable thunk… I think a practical focus on making life more manageable and thus happier for yourself could end up a very wise idea…

    • Cheryl says:

      It would be hopeless for me to start this regime in mid-summer. Partly because I’m outside most of the time. This way, I have time to set up the habit and hope it is strong enough by the summer. It is already raising my spirits, so even if it only gets me through the mud season then I’ve won. Anything else is a bonus!

  • You know…I think it’s amazing how when we organize our lives a bit, how our own lives as mothers just get easier. I recently cleaned my downstairs…purged like a madwoman, and now it’s just so much more manageable…and the effect it has had on my mood has been amazing. I’m astounded at how miserable I become in a messy, disorganized space. Making your life easier is a great place to start!
    Thanks for joining in!
    xo maureen

    • Cheryl says:

      I’d love to think that I am spontaneous and a free spirit, but in reality I need the routine. It is also easier for me to be creative if I’m not surrounded by dirty dishes and if meal time anxiety is not looming. Hopefully I will gain more time and a space to create. More time for me!

  • Anne says:

    I’m so glad to hear that you are going to make time for you. And finding ways we can do that without neglecting our other responsibilities and feeling guilty can be tricky. I hope you find a routine or system that works for you, ‘cos we all have our own way of doing things. I have lots of ideas but find it hard to follow through or even get started in the first place. I think I’m just lazy. 🙂 That being said, I don’t want to get to the end of my life and realise I wasted my time and could have accomplished so much more,
    For a while I did plan meals in advance and really enjoyed that because we had some interesting meals instead of the same plain old boring ones we have week in week out.
    For me to attemp any of this organisational stuff, I’ve got to be in the right head space and that doesn’t happen often. 🙂
    I wish I could send you some of the bright sunny weather from Western Australia. I’m at Dad and Mum’s place now and it is fabulous. Hot, sunny, peaceful and I’m soaking it all up so come our winter in June, July, August, I can get through those cold days a little better.
    Take care,
    Anne xx

    • Cheryl says:

      We have sun today, but heavy frost, so I think a taste of your sunny, warm day would be a tonic. I love living in a place with distinct seasons. Strangely enough I love the cold, but I miss the long daylight hours. Saying that, each season has its purpose. Enjoy your sun and summer food. Renew your batteries ready for the winter months.

      I let my meal planning slide after quite a few months of doing it. I had a rhythm of planning and ordering food which worked really well. It is easier to plan a more exciting menu, which was less stressful to get on the table. I missed a couple of weeks of planning and just didn’t get back into the rhythm of it. This time I’m going to make it easier to slide back in if I do miss a week. You are right, any system only works if you are 100% in the right place. It feels rewarding, at the moment, to be in control (well on the way to it!) and winning myself “me” time. That’s what keeps me going. 🙂

      I hope you are enjoying your visit. I’m sure you are working up some lovely creative projects. Sun and peace to you all.

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