Need More Time? 5 Tips to Be More Efficient and Manage Your Time Well as a Busy Mom

January 27, 2022

I’m Cason!
And I'm so glad you're here. My prayer is that these words give you hope in the everyday so that you can experience God's fullness in
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Do you find yourself saying, “I wish I had more time.” or “There are never enough hours in the day!”. Today I’m sharing 5 time management tips you can use as a busy stay at home mama in order to make the most of your time and spend it wisely! I’m guilty of getting to the end of the day and asking myself what I even did – where did all of my time go? So if that’s you, you’re not alone! These five things will help you feel more balanced, productive, and on top of the motherhood game. You have more time than you think! Grab your headphones and press play so that I can show you how to find it!!

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Hey friend, welcome back to another episode of the podcast! I’m so glad that you’re here this week. We’re talking about my top five time management tips for the busy mama. Now, time is the strangest thing. Can we all agree? Like some days the clock just drags by and you’re like, “oh my goodness. Will my husband ever be home?”

And then other times time just seems to fly by. Isn’t it crazy how that happens? I’ve never understood that. Like, even as a kid, I remember thinking at times, time would go by so slowly and then other times, it’s like the blink of an eye. It is the only resource that you never get back. Have you ever thought about that?

It’s the most valuable thing that we have and we constantly just give it away as if it’s nothing. We waste it. We just spend our time doing things that don’t matter. You can earn more money. You can buy more food, you can buy more clothes, you can replace almost anything except for time. Your time is super valuable.

So let’s be efficient with it. Let’s steward it well. Who doesn’t want to make the most of their time? I know I say I do. And then if I look at my total screen time from last week and my iPhone settings, my actions will say otherwise. That’s a big gut check. Some of you have never looked at that on your phone.

You need to. It will give you a big dose of reality and show you just how much time you actually do have and how much time you’re wasting. And I’m only saying this because I love you and I want you to spend your time, your most precious resource, wisely and spend it how you want to. And I know you want more time for yourself, so I want you to spend your time on yourself, doing things that you love and that you enjoy. Things that you did before you became a mom.

So let’s talk about some practical time management tips that you can implement as a busy mama. Jumping right in, grab your tea, grab your coffee, get some headphones, whatever you need. You might want a little notebook to take some notes.

These are super, super practical. We’re going to dive right in.

The very first thing that you have to do before we start implementing any time management skills or strategies, the first thing you have to do is to set your focus. You have to know why you’re doing this, and this may seem redundant, but it helps you follow through and stick to actually implementing something new.

You can come back to your why when you encounter resistance or it feels difficult to put these things into practice. So what is the reason you want to manage your time? Like I said, I know that that probably sounds like a very rhetorical question, but is something that you need to think through, it’s something you need to think about.

Why does it matter that you have more time? What do you want to do with your time, and why do you want to do those things with your time? Why do you want to be more efficient with it? Think through these things and maybe jot some of them down. I promise you that it’s going to be helpful to know and helpful to refer back to when it feels impossible or when it feels like you don’t want to be efficient with your time.

You don’t want to manage your time well, you can kind of come back to this “why.” So set the focus and know your why. Okay. The very first practical nitty-gritty, time management tip is this: time-blocking. Using scheduling to write out your week and figure out where you have time and where you don’t. I did a podcast episode back in November, it’s episode #22.

It is one of my top three, most played, most downloaded episodes. So go back to it. I go in depth, talking about time blocking. How to use it, how to do it, why it matters, why you should use it as a busy mom. But when you use time-blocking, you are really laying out your time. You’re looking at your week and you’re saying, “okay, this is where I have time.

This is where I don’t have time.” And then you fill in the things that you want to do, the things you need to do, the things that it would be nice to do. You do it. It’s very, it’s a very simple strategy. It’s a very simple system to use, but it’s something that we don’t utilize for the longest time. I did time blocking a lot in college and some whenever I was teaching, but otherwise I never really used it before kids.

And then when I had kids, it was like, I kind of made an outline of our day, especially with the first one, because a whole day with a newborn, when you have nothing else to do. What am I going to do with this entire day? I eventually started to get into the habit of setting a basic outline for the day, some semblance of structure, just because we all need that.

Whether or not you realize that, we all do need some sort of structure and some routine. We thrive in that. Okay? And so time blocking is a really good way to map out your week, map out your time and make sure you are like squeezing all the juice out of your day, all the juice out of your week. So check out episode #22 for more in-depth on time blocking.

I love it. I use it now. It helps me to see, “okay, this is what we have going on this week. This is what I have going on. This is what the girls have going on, and this is where I’m going to be for what times.” And then I can plan the things that I want to do, you know, just like an audio book or reading or whatever it is.

The things that I enjoy, I can pencil those in and then I can also pencil in the things that I need to get done. Like if I know Mondays are for a specific chore, then that helps me to know, okay, you can set everything else aside for now. You’ve got a block of time dedicated to this specific task.

So then it helps my brain and my mind to not be feeling like that I have to do 10,000 things at one time, because I know that I have designated this block of time for one task and all that I have to do during this time right now is this one task. And then whenever I move on to the next block of time, or tomorrow, I can do the next thing. I’m telling you, if you haven’t tried this, you need to try it.

It is a game changer. Okay, then second tip that I have for managing your time is setting a timer for tasks around the house. So setting a timer again, allows you to work on one specific task for that allotted time, rather than bouncing back and forth, feeling like you have to do everything all at one time. Who else gets so distracted when you walk into a room to do one thing? It’s like, If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. I’m telling you Give a Mouse a Cookie had to have been written by a stay at home mom… A busy, overwhelmed mom, like trying to do all the things because it’s like you walk into your closet and then before you know it, like the whole day has passed.

And you walk back to your closet and you still never did the one thing. Is anybody like feeling me on this? I do this all the time. It’s the worst. Whenever I go into the laundry room, because for some reason on the way there, I see 10 other things that I need to do before I get there.

And I think that I just want to do it like all in one sweep. And so I pick up this off the counter and I pick up this off the floor and then I’m like, “oh, those need to go there.” And then I try to like, get all the things done on the way to the laundry room. And then it’s like, I never make my way to the laundry room.

So when you set a timer for tasks, not only will it help you to kind of work on that task for that specific time and not feel like a pinball bouncing all around… But it’s also super helpful if you are a procrastinator or if you have a hard time starting a task that you think is going to take a lot longer than it actually will.

So if the task seems overwhelming and big, and it’s just daunting, those things are hard to kind of start. And so what I like to do for those things is set a timer, maybe a two minute timer or a five minute timer, and then you kind of just go at it for that long. And then I love to see the progress that I make within that short amount of time.

And that usually will motivate me to keep going. So set a timer for different tasks that you want to do around the house, especially the overwhelming and daunting task. Set a timer for those, put you on some fun, upbeat music, your favorite music, whatever it is, dance around, make it fun. Set a timer and tackle that one thing that you’ve been putting off, because I’m telling you 9 times out of 10, whenever I do this, whenever I actually do the thing that I’ve been putting off…

Almost always in my mind, I say to myself, “that did not take as much time as I thought it was going to. It did not take as much mental effort as I thought it was going to.” It’s like the whole buildup and the dread of it was actually worse than just completing the task. So if you’re not already, set a timer for tasks.

Number three. Okay. You know, I’m not going to go a whole episode without talking about a morning routine. So I want you to try to create a mini morning routine. Okay. It doesn’t have to be complicated. It doesn’t have to be in depth or long, 30 minutes an hour or two hours. Start small. See how much you can do within a short amount of time each morning consistently now.

And then how much better prepared you feel for the day when you wake up just a few minutes before your kids. I just did a five day challenge with the community group. If you’re not in there, you can actually join and then just go through the content at your own pace. But we did five minutes a day for five days. The challenge was wake up five minutes earlier, set an alarm five minutes earlier.

If you don’t set an alarm at all, then you choose a time whenever your kids usually wake up and then set the alarm for five minutes before then. If you’re already waking up, you can just bump it back five minutes. But the moms in the group who participated, who took part in this challenge said, “I feel so much better about my day.

I can already tell a difference in my mindset. I’m getting so much done in such a short amount of time. I feel like I have time for myself.” Oh my goodness. Who doesn’t want time for themselves? I do. I know that you do. So why would you not just try? Can we give up just five minutes, maybe 10 minutes and create this many morning routine that is all about you, mama.

It’s about you. Make it about you. Set up the coffee pot. Get that coffee in, drink it while it’s hot. I’m not a coffee drinker, but I know what it’s like to make some tea and then you forget about the tea. And you take a sip and it’s cold, and then you reheat it and just, it gets forgotten about. Like, I’ve literally – speaking of, you know, Give a Mouse a Cookie… Coming to the end of your day and remembering something that you didn’t do.

I’ve gone to put something in the microwave for supper and I’m like, there’s my mug of tea that I never enjoyed. So creating a mini morning routine that serves you. What are some non-negotiable for you in your life? And if you haven’t thought about that, now is the time, okay. What do you need to help yourself feel… Not even put together, but just grounded and centered and ready, prepared.

We don’t know what’s going to happen when the baby wakes up. We don’t know what’s going to happen. Like we don’t know the kind of mood the toddler is going to wake up in. Trust me, I know. My girls are seven, four and two. We get all kinds of ranges and ages and attitudes and personalities going on in this house.

But what you can control is your perspective, your attitude, how you feel about yourself, how you feel about your day and what you’re going to choose to believe. For me, the non-negotiables in my morning routine are reading my Bible and prayer, and those things happen almost every morning. And if I find that I didn’t get it in, for some reason, I put it on the Bible app while I’m driving them to school.

I put in some headphones. I am selfish about that because I need that time. I will make sure that those things happen because I know that makes me a better mom so I can serve them better. I can love them better. I don’t feel like I’m running on empty all the time. I’m pouring into my cup and it is not selfish.

And I’m here to tell you that you need to do the same thing. This is your permission slip. So create a mini morning routine. This is going to be another way to manage your time efficiently. The fourth thing is meal and grocery planning for the week. This is going to save you so much time and possibly, even money, as well.

It will save you mental energy spent stressing about what you’re going to cook for dinner at 5:30 at night. You’re going to feel more kind of put together when you have this plan for your meals and for food for your week. It is a lot easier to stick to something you’ve already mapped out and thought through rather than trying to make, you know, the best decision in the moment.

Default is usually a to-go order or carry out from somewhere or an I need my husband to pick something up on the way home. I got stuck in that rut for so long. I’m just saying that meal and grocery planning and prep for the week is going to give you a plan that you can stick to. And you’re not going to be, you know, 4:35, 5 o’clock… “Oh my gosh, what are we gonna eat for dinner?

Well, I want to cook spaghetti, but we don’t have any noodles.” I can’t tell you how many times this happens to me. So I’m thinking this probably happens to you too. But what I’ve started doing every Sunday afternoon, evening, I sit down, I plan out the meals for our week and then I make my grocery list and I go ahead and I do the ClickList order.

I pick it up on Monday morning. Now I know some of you are very snobbish, because I also was, about your produce and your produce and your meat and everything. Like you, I know you’re the perfect grocery shopper and nobody else can pick the most perfect produce like you can, because I know, like I’m the same. But when I think about my time, when I think about the trade…

I can kind of convince myself to, you know, let the Walmart shopper pick out the best apples and the best broccoli. If I get to keep an hour and a half of my time, because there is no way that I’m going to take my two year old into Walmart and push a cart all up and down aisles, whenever someone else’s perfectly capable of doing that.

It is free and it saves you so much time! Oh my goodness. We’re talking about time management. What in the world, if you’re not doing grocery ClickLists, please. But if not, you really need to try it. It is a game changer. Okay. And I do that at the beginning of every week. It’s not going to help you if you don’t do it, you know, once a week and actually sit down and think through and plan.

Okay. So the last thing is kind of like it’s, it’s not super practical, but it is going to be very helpful. It is something that you can do. It’s kind of not like a tangible though, but it’s shifting your mindset about how you complete tasks and when they have to get done. Yes. Some things are time sensitive and they have to be done by a certain time.

But other things can be done another time if the time that you planned doesn’t work out. Or if things just aren’t going, like, if it’s not going to work for that specific timeframe. Do not force it. I can’t tell you how many moms have said, “well, you know, he woke up before I wanted him to, and I wasn’t done with this yet.

So I was trying to force him to lay back down or go back to sleep instead of having him get up and then having him occupied while I finished, whatever it is I was doing.” Or, you know, just circle back to it. Make a sticky note, put it into your phone, set an alarm to remind yourself to come back to whatever it was that you got interrupted on.

I think when you can shift… Like almost everything is a mindset shift. When I began to learn and study the mind as someone who has struggled with anxiety, majority of my life, when I really learned to master my mindset, it’s like, it’s just a game. It’s just a game. It literally, have you heard of mind games?

Like it is all mind games, you know, you’re in this season right now. And whether you want to be or not, you’re here until something changes. You’re here until you move into the next season. So why would you not shift your mindset and shift your perspective to figure out how to enjoy it while you’re here?

And you need to do the same thing about your time and how you’re spending your time. It’s so valuable. It matters so much how you spend your time and what you’re doing and what you’re consuming. You know, we say we don’t have any time. I would have told you with one child, you know, five years ago, I don’t have any time.

And she was the only one, like she was going to preschool and I had four hours in the morning and yeah, I worked from home for a family business. But I would have told you, I don’t have any time. But you best believe if I had the, you know, the time setting on my phone, where it could show me and give me that kick in the pants like I was talking about in the beginning… It would have said like hours scrolling on Facebook and looking through Facebook groups and whatever else it is. You have the time friend.

And if you think. If you really, really think that you don’t, then I would really encourage you to sit down, to write it all out, write out everything you do for every single day. Where are you spending your time? And when you do that, it’s very convicting and you’re going to see. “Oh, well, yeah, but you know, I wasn’t, I wasn’t talking about that, you know, hour and a half while, um, I was just scrolling.

That was just an accident. I don’t do that every day.” Yes we do. Yes, you do scroll on your phone every single day for hours. We all do. And it’s okay. But it’s just rather than pretending, like something is not how it is, like become self-aware of it and figure out, “okay. How can I occupy my time? Why do I tend to, to run to my phone?

What am I looking for? Like, what am I trying to cope with or, or avoid, or, you know, why do I feel addicted to this thing? And what is it doing for me?” It could be so many different things. Just start to investigate and see what is that about, and then shift your mindset about your time, because your time is so, so important.

We don’t get it back. Like you don’t get it back. And if we really saw it for how valuable it was, we would steward it so much better. We would be so efficient, but because we’re tired, because we are overstimulated, because we have decision fatigue we would rather, you know, waste our time whenever we have a free minute, we want to scroll.

We want to just get lost down the rabbit trail of Facebook and Instagram and everybody else’s lives for one reason or another. Or we want to put on the show and just escape into it. But, and, and I love to watch TV. I love to connect and be on my phone, but there’s a time and a place where, you know, you can’t really, you can’t really be both. Like you can’t say “I want to be more efficient with my time.

I want to take ownership of my time and I want to tell my time where to go. I want to start to say, you know, be intentional and say, this is what I’m doing for this amount of time on this day.” You can’t say that and at the same time, say “I just, you know, don’t have energy. I don’t feel like it. I’m just going to sit here and just scroll for like a little bit longer. Just a little bit longer.”

You can’t do that. Okay. So you have to decide, first of all. And I think if you’re here listening, you do want for things to be different. But there’s, there’s a difference in saying I want for my life to be different. I want for my life to look different. And there’s a difference in actually doing what it takes to make it look different because it’s not easy.

It does not come easy for anybody. Everybody is sacrificing. Everybody has to give something up, whether it looks like the, you know, the comfort of sitting on the couch and scrolling or binging Netflix at 2:00 AM. I don’t do that. Like I’m not up scrolling at 3:00 AM because I know that doesn’t serve me.

And so think about these things that no longer serve you. You know, maybe you did need that when you were nursing the baby at 2:00 AM. I was on my phone a lot more. I’m not doing that anymore because my baby sleeps through the night and that habit does not serve me. So take inventory of your time, take inventory of your mindset about these things that you’re doing with your time.

And just ask yourself, who do I want to be? Like, what kind of mom do I want to be? And how do I want to show up in the world? And why does this matter? And then look at your life and compare how you want it to be and feel, and how it is and how it feels right now. And what is one thing or a few things like, even if you use these small things that I’ve given you in this episode, what can I do to change and make these little tiny shifts to become more…

You know this version of this mom that I want to be, to honestly be who Christ has called you to be. He has not called you to waste your life away. He has not called you to waste away in the little years of motherhood while you just kind of stick it out and survive. He has so much more for you right now.

Right where you are in this season. I don’t care what season it is. I don’t care. I don’t care what it is you’re going through or what you’re dealing with. He has abundance for you, and he wants you to be walking in that abundance and the freedom and the joy and the peace and the calm. All of those things are yours if you are a Christ follower.

If you’re walking with him consistently. Walk in it, take ownership of it. Take that on as your identity, because it is. So I hope that these things are helpful. I love to share super practical things and obviously it all has a spiritual tie to it.

This all matters because as Christ followers we matter to him, and the way you spend your time matters to him. And so just as a little kind of conviction check there, maybe pray about some of these things and ask him to show you where you’re spending your time and how you’re spending your time, and maybe some of your mindset and beliefs around some of these things.

And he will. He is faithful to work and show you in your life. You just have to be open and willing to receive. So if you love this episode, please right now, take a second. If you’re listening on apple podcast, scroll down to the bottom of the main page with all the episodes. If you back out right now, you’ll see all the episodes numbered right there, scroll down, and then you’ll see a place where you can write a review.

Please click on that and leave a little short review letting other listeners, other mamas, know what this podcast means to you. What you’re taking away from this episode, what you love about the podcast in general. And when you do this, it helps other moms find the content here. It helps them find episodes like this one and connect with it and become part of the community, which is what we’re doing.

We’re building a community of mamas who want more for motherhood. Who are saying, “you know, I’m not buying into the hot mess, mom culture. I’m not just surviving until bedtime. I believe I was made for more. I believe motherhood is a beautiful season, that yes, feels draining and exhausting, but it is also a place where we can thrive right now.

Right where we are. Not ‘when,’ not ‘until…’” So, thank you so much for your support. Thanks again for being here and hanging out with me. I am loving two episodes a week. It’s so exciting to be able to sit with you twice a week and chat. I love it, love it, love it. And as always, your support means the world to me. Thanks so much for being here, friend.

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