How do I combine blogging, with being a wife, a mother and working full time and being heavily involved in church and community activities?
I get asked this question frequently so I figured that it will be good to do a blog post on it. I work in an investment bank, and I am constantly seeking to better my career such as training, and networking sessions. I have a toddler who has recently discovered her legs, and learnt how to say no! I have the loveliest husband who encourages and supports me (I don’t think I would be able to do this without his support!). I am heavily involved in voluntary activities with my church and the community. I blog four times a week.
Sometimes, I feel that 24 hours is not enough, and I could do with a couple more hours! But there are some things that help me manage my time well, so I will share it with you.
This is really important to me and it helps me manage my time. I plan all my activities. For example, I schedule my blog posts at least two weeks in advance. I write a schedule of blog posts at least two weeks before, that way I know what pictures I need, what things I need to for the post. I usually flesh the post out a day or two before posting, but most of the times, the post is already written two weeks or at least a week before it is published. I plan general time to catchup with my husband. I found that if I do not plan properly it affects the time spent with him so I try to plan well.
An example of my daily schedule
5:30am – Wake up, pray and get my daughter and I ready for the day. I pack her bag with food, extra clothes and nappies. I also take my smoothie that I usually make the night before. I’m trying to eat my 5 fruit and veg a day!
6:30am – I leave my house, drop my daughter at her nanny or at the nursery. From there, I catch the train to work.
7am – 7:15am – On the train, I send emails and texts which are on my to do list. I love to do lists!! My memory can be interesting! I read my bible. I look through my pictures which I have taken before and think of what I want to post. I also post on my social media accounts.
8:15am– 8:30am – I arrive at work and write my to do list of all the things I want to achieve in the day such as preparing for an important meeting.
5pm – 5-30pm – I finish work and battle my way through the commuters, praying that there are no delays on my train!
6:30pm – 7pm – I get home, play with my daughter, catchup with the hubby with pepper pig playing in the background! As much as I dislike that pig, it does keep Stephanie occupied! I make dinner if I have the energy, or help my hubby whilst he is making dinner.
7:30pm – I start getting Steph ready for bed. It’s bathtime, then I change her into her pyjamas, and give her some food if she is peckish, sometimes milk isn’t enough! I do try to read to her, but most of the times I just give her a cuddle, till she winds down.
8pm – Steph’s bedtime. I don’t play with bedtime!
8pm – 11pm – I flesh out the next blog post while catching up with hubby. Sometimes he falls asleep so I get the perfect environment to work on my blog and watch Youtube. Praise the Lord! Let someone shout ‘Allelujah!
11pm – It’s bedtime for me or else I would be a walking zombie the next morning!
This schedule sounds crazy but I find that it works for me.
Know your limits
There are some days that I wake up absolutely exhausted and I am literally dragging myself to work, and I know that I need a break. There are some days when I will decide not to look at my blog when I get home, and just chillax in front of the TV. There are some weekends when I send my daughter to my mums so that I can have a lie in and rest. What works for others may not work for you. Know your personal limits. Understand your body and learn how to read the signs when you are pushing yourself too hard.
Take some time out to rest
I think it is important to rest and take care of your body. A random woman told me, that I cannot be the best mother or wife if I am tired or stressed which is I find is true, so I try to regularly find time to rest my mind and body. I do my nails or my hair which gives me time to myself. I hate massages so I don’t go for them, but if you like them, schedule them regularly so you can relax and unwind. Even just a catch-up with my friends or my sister is enough to help me relax.
Go for it
If you love something, try and find the energy to do it. I love the bible verse that says ‘a person’s gift opens doors for him, bringing him access to important people’. Do not neglect your gift or hobby. If you have a gift, do not push it to the sidelines. Make time for it. It could be your ticket to a better and brighter future. I love blogging even though it takes up my time, I enjoy doing it, so it keeps me going. I take all my pictures myself by the way. Either I take the pictures at work during lunchtime or do a week’s worth of pictures on the weekend. I do all of this because I believe the time is now, and that keeps me going. Life is too short to live with regrets. Go for it. Don’t let that dream die.
Don’t expect perfection.
I used to be so hard on myself in every area of my life, pushing myself to absolute limits, then feeling down when I didn’t achieve the goals. Be realistic with what you want to achieve and don’t be too hard on yourself. For example, I used to feel like the world’s worst mother because I was so exhausted after work that I couldn’t play with my daughter. I used to feel like the world’s worst wife because I didn’t cook fresh meals for my husband every night. I used to feel like the worst blogger because I missed a blogging day. But I realised that I cannot be perfect and I need to be realistic with my aims. It has helped take the pressure off a little, and given me room to breathe!
I hope these tips help you manage things well. Do you have any other tips? Let me know in the comments below