Single Mothering Like A Boss
6 Ways to slow things down, tips for personal growth
Wow, I’ve had quite the break from Single Mothering Like a Boss, and I’ve really missed it. The Coronavirus pandemic hit, and I really slowed things down and pared everything right back to examine my life. But I’m back! Back to hopefully inspire, motivate and humour you through your transition in becoming a single mum (I don’t think the transition ever ends to be honest).
The other day at work I became overwhelmed with fatigue after lunch, I know we all get tired after lunch, but this was next level. I left half an hour early to have a little rest before picking the kids up. Anyone who knows me knows this is very unlike me and something I never do. I’ll spare you the unpleasant details but think I had a mild case of food poisoning.
Anyhow later in the day I was snuggled in bed in my pjs with my cat (kids got to make themselves baked beans…go me!) and I was reading and relaxing and enjoying myself. I then thought, why TF does it take me to get sick to slow TF down. Or, a global pandemic!
During isolation I really enjoyed getting back to basics. Being forced to spend time around the house, y’know the house that we work our butts off to pay for and maintain. Being forced to cook meals and bake treats, from scratch, teaching the kids these things as well. Spending time in the garden. I love to think of myself as a gardener but honestly, after a week at work and school stuff the weekends are first spent preparing for the week ahead; washing, cooking, cleaning, homework, then some form of socialising and relaxing, that I never really spend the time I want to in the garden.
I have decided that the following things need to happen to keep on top of the new normal slower paced lifestyle:
- Say yes less
You know when your heart says no, but you feel you should say yes. Or that ‘fear of missing out’ if you say no to something even though you don’t really feel like doing it or have back to back things going on at that time. This goes for things with the kids as well.
- Schedule more nothing
I am one of those people that has always sub consciously felt that unless it’s after the kids are in bed and the day is over when I’m ‘allowed’ to watch tv, that I can’t sit and do nothing. Blissful nothing. I loved a cup of tea out the front on sunny mornings during isolation. I’m keeping that up. And weekends, you especially need more nothing time, and so do the kids. Scheduling nothing doesn’t have to mean doing nothing, although that’s totally fine too, it just means having blank space to do what you feel like doing.
- Less ridiculously long ‘to do’ lists
I have one work day off a week and I used to drop the kids off at school and literally not stop racing around by the time came to pick them up. I’m just not doing that anymore. So many of these things don’t need doing at all, let alone right then and now. An overall ‘list’ sits in my notebook and I get to the items when I feel like it or if they become more urgent. And daily, I set realistic goals rather than the amount of tasks for 10 people.
- Be selective on how I spend my time and who I spend it with
Mother’s Day this year was during isolation and it was so much more peaceful than running around doing all the seventy billion things the school usually organises ‘for us mums’. Next year kids, you get to pick one, and that’s it, I’m a working mum and can’t do it all, and it’s not particularly how I would choose to spend free time or time I’ve taken off work. It’s bookclub soon and you’re hosting, and you’re drained from a personal conversation you’ve had that afternoon and your kids want to discuss their dad and everyone is crying and emotional. Cancel bookclub.
- Less shopping
Less clothes, less food, less future gifts because there’s a sale on. Just less going to ‘the shops’ and less ‘browsing’ in general. It takes up so much time and more things don’t make you happy.
- More listening to my body and mind
That moment when you’re so stiff and sore ‘but can’t fit in a physio or massage appointment’. Or, feel so overwhelmed with everything you think you need to do and everything’s getting on top of you ‘but work is too busy to take a personal leave day’. Those are the moments when self care is needed the most.
Isolation really taught me about how hectic my life was, often (not always, we are single mums after all) in ways it really didn’t need to be. Obviously, balance is needed. There are things in life we just have to do, and of course we love our friends and don’t want to continuously cancel on them etc. However, we can’t make everyone happy we are allowed to put ourselves and needs first. I am focussed on making this slower pace of life my new normal.
Have you created a new normal? I’d love to hear about it x
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I’m Lou Lou
Hi there gals. I’m Lou Lou and five years ago I lost my best friend, the love of my life, the father of my children and my stability when my husband died very suddenly and my world was completely torn apart. I literally had absolutely no idea how I would move forward and honestly didn’t think I would. I wanted to fast forward my life to a minimum of ten years on.
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