The Covid-19 pandemic has uprooted our sense of normal for a few years, and for many people it’s been a very difficult time. This shakeup also has been an opportunity for a do-over for some, a time to reevaluate our habits, routines, and commitments.
Many of us long for ways to simplify our days and have more opportunities to do things we love. The “go, go, go” lifestyle that we have established for ourselves can be reconstructed to produce a sense of clarity and tranquility, and increase our productivity too.
So, how do we welcome simplicity and spaciousness into our days? Consider your everyday routines and habits and, for at least one month, try these challenges and see how much of a difference it can make.
Pay attention to energy levels
Consider what time of day you have the most energy. Whether it’s morning, midday, or evening, there is a good chunk of time for each of us to really get into gear and get things done. I have the most energy in the morning and I am good at waking up early, so mornings are when I can get ahead on chores or meal prepping. Getting things done when you have the most energy will help keep your to-do list from piling up.
Start each day with a morning routine
- The night before, get all meals and items you need to bring to work or school ready to go.
- Make your bed after you get up in the morning.
- Get your kids up and encourage them to do the same.
- Eat a healthy breakfast.
- For breakfast cleanup, you can delegate tasks (like putting dirty dishes in the dishwasher or wiping down the counters) to your partner or children. Delegation is necessary. You are not alone here!
Simplify your meals
- Creating a weekly menu is extremely helpful for following a budget, setting expectations for the week, and allowing everyone to engage in meal planning. It takes some time to plan, but it frees up much more time later.
- Then choose your shopping day(s). When is the best time for you to get to the store?
- Meal prep your lunches on Sundays or the day before.
- Create stations where you or the kids can easily pack lunches.
- Create a kid’s zone in your pantry and fridge with labels for each category or for each kid! Check out our DIY Pantry Guide for more ideas.
- Simplify things that free up time and energy later. For dinners, make things as easy as you can. For example, you can make-ahead some rice in the rice cooker and have it done in 20 minutes and marinade chicken in the fridge along with chopped veggies. When you finish your workday, all you’ll need to do is cook the prepped chicken and veggies and you’re good to go.
Put it on a calendar
Create a calendar that everyone can see (try putting one on your fridge!) for meals, activities, doctors’ appointments, bills, social gatherings, etc.
Make sure you are stocked up with supplies and tools you need to clean and organize your space, so that you always have what you need when you’re getting in the zone.
- Take time for you! Add in that favorite yoga class on Thursday nights with your gals or carve out time after the kids go to sleep to read a chapter of your favorite romance novel.
- Make cleaning, organizing, and planning fun for the kids by adding in music or giving rewards. Always give praise!
You don’t need to do all these things, even one or two will make a huge difference!