If you missed last Thursday’s post, be sure to go back and check it out. It’s the very important first step in how to be more productive. I would love to hear your feedback about what you think you’ll do for your first step.
How To Be Productive At Home
1. Choose one thing to start the ball rolling. You have to see last week’s post about what this looked like for me. 🙂
2. After you can see noticeable progress in your first area, start making a list of the other things you would like to add to this. Making beds every day, going to bed with a clean kitchen, sweeping the floors, wiping sinks, folding laundry – I don’t know what your list is. All of these things made my first lists. And I would try and succeed to do all of them one day and then wouldn’t get any of them the next four days. Then I would scrap it and think it wasn’t possible and come up with a new list.
How I got the list I have now is this: I asked my husband what one chore I could do every day so that he would feel less stressed at home. He answered : to have the kitchen cleaned up – dishes done, and counters wiped. So I added that to my to do every day. I didn’t give myself as long as an adjustment period this time. I wanted to keep the ball of productivity rolling. I thought “What would go better with a clean kitchen than a clean kitchen floor?” so I cleaned the eye soar that was the baby’s high chair, scrubbed the floor and started fresh. Then I thought “if these were the only things I got done every day, would I feel like my house was clean?” My answer was “Almost”. I added that the kids’ toys needed to be picked up and that my catch all (the kitchen table) needed to be cleared off.
Then I started doing them. The toy thing was easy as I almost never put the kids to bed without having them pick up first, but wouldn’t you know it, as I started focusing on the dishes, I let the toys slip. I would just do it myself after they went to bed.
I found myself initially letting my daughter watch just one more episode of whatever so I could get my tasks done in peace. While in the moment she enjoyed it, overall we had much grumpier days. So I added something else to my list – intention contact time first thing when baby goes down for a nap before I jump into anything else. This looks a lot like preschool some days and some days it looks a lot like wrestling. But mostly it looks like school. Then I know she has little love tank full to the brim, she wants to help me throughout the day, and the day will be much more successful.
My hope in accomplishing these tasks was not to have more things to do after the kids went to bed, giving me less time to decompress at the end of the day. The point was to say “how can I chip away at these tasks all day long so that when I put the kids to bed, I’m done for the day?” This has been HUGE in my days. I’m a procrastinator. I would leave my dishes till after the kids went to bed so I wouldn’t get interrupted. But I would be exhausted and it would seem horrible. Now I just find ways to be creative. Have the kids play together in their room. Have my daughter help me while my son is in his high chair. Have my daughter distract my son with dancing. The dishes get done over the course of the day. My husband knows I’m most successful with this if the dishwasher is already empty and ready to load in the morning. So he helps me do that before he leaves for work or before we go to bed. Sweeping doesn’t have to be done at the end of the day. It can be done after lunch. I can have my daughter sweep. And my son. They love pushing brooms and dust mops around. Once those are done putting stuff away off the counters and tables are easy (as long as I’m disciplined enough to not make the top of the freezer their new home…ooops :/) and we clean up toys right before we go to bed so there’s minimal chance of anything getting messy again.
I did this fairly successfully for about 2 weeks with just the dishes and then another 1 with the additional chores before moving on to the next step. You may not be ready that fast. That’s ok. This is about your pace and having grace with yourself.
I’m really excited to share step 3 with you next week. I am LOVING this system. And I can see it really working for me.
What have you learned so far – would you share in the comments?
This post is part of a series. Click here to see the other posts.