Doing Things Differently – An Update!

Last week I wrote about how I was struggling to stay on top of everything around the house and lacking in motivation. To try and remedy this I listed 10 things that I was going to do differently last week. I had such a lovely response to this post. It was comforting to hear that I wasn’t the only one who has times like this. So I thought I would let you know how my week was.

But just before I do that, I wanted to share two brilliant posts that were incredibly helpful in making feel better and motivating me to keep going with these changes.

The first is written by Carrie from The Parenting Passageway – Parenting Burn-Out and Chaos!. It was almost like Carrie could see exactly how I was feeling.

First of all, please be easy with yourself. The mothers I see that are hardest on themselves are the ones with babies ( “I should be doing just what I did before I had a baby!”) or the ones with multiple children under the age of 7. Be easy! Your most important job is to take care of them, and also yourself! But part of doing this is developing your own will….read on!

Please do read the rest of her post, it has some great ideas.

The second was from Christine from Half Full titled The Trouble With Motherhood. This post made it clear to me that in trying to do things differently, I was really trying to decrease the busyness is in my life. I am even more inspired from this post to keep going. (I posted this quote on facebook too, but I love it so much that I am posting it here as well, sorry if you have read it twice!)

When we strip motherhood of play and flow—as we so often do, just to get everything done—our mood deteriorates. It isn’t just worry about our children and endless housework that make us anxious and unhappy; it’s that we aren’t actually having fun anymore. Fun, rest, relaxation, flow have been squeezed out of our lives in the pursuit of more. More sports for our kids, more homework, more driving to activities, more work so we can earn more money so we can buy more stuff. We are poisoned by the hypnotic belief, writes Muller, that “good things come only through unceasing determination and tireless effort,” and so “we can never truly rest.”

Again head over and read the full article and take on Christine’s Happiness Challenge!

Now back to me! Here is how these changes have helped:

1. Go to bed at 10pm

Now I would previously have written FAIL, but I am going to be EASY on myself. I haven’t once made 10pm, but I did make 10.15pm and I have been in bed at least 30 minutes earlier than I usually go. Not perfect, but improvement and I am going to keep working on it.

2. 30 minute cleaning tasks

I love this. My house looks so much better and I am not feeling as overwhelmed by the dust and mess.

3. Laundry

Taking care of the folding straight away has been much more effective.

4. iPhone

Not using my iPhone in the morning has been fabulous. I know that it is better for the kids not to be tuned into technology first thing in the morning and it is the same for me. I find that my head isn’t getting cluttered instantly with more things to do or worry about!

5. Toy Rotation

This has been a great success and I have gone for a very minimalist approach to the toys that I have our for the toddler.

6. Get outside more.

We ate lunch outside most days last week and the sunshine really did help to lift my mood. It is a shame there hasn’t been as much sunshine this week!

7. Garage Sale Box.

I have two suitcases, three enormous bags and one large box full of STUFF that we don’t need. It has been a fantastic feeling getting this stuff out and ready for selling at our garage sale. And I think I would have gotten through half of what needs to go as well.

8. Unitask

Again certainly no perfection on this one, but I have dramatically reduced my mulitasking and I think this has been the single biggest factor in making me feel less stressed. I will certainly keep working on this.

9. More time on projects

We were lucky enough to have family visiting last week end so I didn’t do any work on projects, but I will be much more focused on my time management for blog and project tasks this week end.

10. Decluttering Email and My Google Reader

This was tough! I had nearly 400 subscriptions in my reader. I decided that I would limit myself to 200, if I want to add more, but I will have to drop some off. Knowing that my Reader was always over 1000+ items was just giving me something to worry about.

How was your week last week? Did you make any changes?