A majority of us have survived the first week of school. For me? Barely. We have a new schedule in our home and it presents itself many challenges when trying to get to the gym, clean the house, and make sure we are all nourished.
The floors still need to be swept; dishes need to be done, laundry to be folded, etc. Home chores never go away even if they are ignored. But what kind of life is that if we spend all of our free moments as a family making sure that our home is spotless, rather than enjoying it while we have each other? And more importantly, how do we keep up with it all without being a slave to it?
Below are just a few simple things that can be done to simplify the way your life and home are organized. It doesn’t necessarily make things easier, but rather less complicated so the stress isn’t in addition to whatever else is going on.
1. Get rid of excess
Often times, we find ourselves relocating things because we just “don’t want to deal with making a decision about it yet”. Make that decision. Either find a home for it, or get rid of it. It is that simple. Pick a room each weekend and spend some time in it. Really evaluate what you have, and decide how much space you want these things to take up in your life. Once you can fully embrace that the less you have to keep up with, the sweeter life is, you will really start to make solid decisions on what is allowed in your presence.
2. Expect different
We all have seasons that we live in and there are sometimes multiple seasons in one household. I don’t want to tell you to lower your expectations, but believe that when things are off course, or things are in need of extra time and extra grace, you are allowed to give it just that. If you set the bar too high for yourself and others to match against, the level for failure and frustration rise. However, when you find the time for grace in the moments and areas of your life that need them the most, it will only guarantee that the energy will be focused on the things that DO matter.
3. Streamline with systems – that work
I am a planner, and I love a good system for my family. I always want to make sure that everyone knows where they are going and what they are doing when they get home. This eliminates melt downs, screaming at each other and stress. What works for us is a google calendar and a meal plan developed on Sunday with a family meeting to keep everyone on their goal path. We don’t have fancy chore charts or lists that hang on the fridge…we developed a system of genuinely caring about our home and the people in it, to help out every day with the things that matter the most.
I won’t say that this process happened over night and that it is now sunshine and rainbows. But, I will say that we are always learning and discover new things that work. I feel like that happens every time I blink and my daughter gets one day, one month, and one year older. It is grace and love for each other that keep my home and my family going.