It is a fact, you cannot do it all.
It is true, caring for family is a full-time job; you will never be completely caught up. Let me ask you: If you have a list of things to do today; which will you do first? I can tell you, you will do the easier task first—the task that appeals to you most. That will leave the more difficult, time-consuming tasks until last.
You must be prepared for inevitable interruptions.
On a day when I was facing more work than I could get done, the telephone rang. (At least this time it wasn’t a telemarketer!)
“It’s a beautiful day, how about going to town with me for some coffee? We’ll not be gone long and you need a break. You work so hard.”
“I’d love to but I need to catch up a few things; perhaps another time.” As I hung up the phone, I was angry with myself that I could not make time for coffee with a friend.
As I wilted into the chair for my private pity-party, the choice became clear, I could sit and moan and groan or I could take action. I chose the latter.
Armed with a pad, pen, and determination, I listed my tasks. First I listed all the things that absolutely were necessary to get done today. Then I listed those things that could be done in steps—bite-sized chunks instead of the entire project at once. Lastly, I listed those things that someone else could do for me (if they would) or things that could be left undone.
Here are some helpful hints from my planning time:
- 1 Accept the truth in the statement: A woman’s work is never done; you never catch up!
- 2 Develop a simple plan that will work for you and stick to it.
- 3 Instead of going to the store, consider adjusting the menu and using what’s on hand.
- 4 Shake the habit of piddling with papers; if you can’t tend to them immediately, put them in a basket to work through later (maybe while you are watching television.)
- 5 Choose only one or two books to leave out; put the rest away until those are finished.
- 6 Take time to reward yourself for a day well spent.
I was now on a mission.
In record time I made a casserole for dinner using items in the pantry and freezer instead of going to the store. While the casserole baked, I quickly chopped up a salad and washed what dishes I had used. Then I cleaned the kitchen and finished what was necessary in the bedroom and bathrooms and swept the front porch.
I saw that I had time now to clear off the books and “stuff” that had made a home on the dining table. Here is where I often get bogged down; I read every piece of paper on the table and browse the inviting books. Today my priority was to accomplish my goal and clear the table.
I discovered much of my concern was projects that I would not get done anyway; there will always be something left undone. On my third list dusting the blades on the ceiling fans, some mending, and washing the quilts could wait until a more opportune time. I could add mending to tomorrow’s list and make sure to include it in my schedule.
Wow! It’s still early in the afternoon and I am through with today’s chores. Where is my telephone?
“Cindy, are you still game for a get-together? Why don’t you come over and we’ll have coffee and cookies on the deck and enjoy this beautiful day? See you soon.”
“To everything there is a season, and a time for everything under the sun … “Ecclesiastes
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