Time. There never seems to be enough time, yet there is an endless amount of time. Confusing, right? Like everything else in life – it is what you make it. Time can be a source of stress, and it definitely is for me on most days. However, a little planning and realistic expectations go a long way.
So what does this have to do with feeding your kids? Well, like anything else … that planning and those realistic expectations (not to be repetitive) can make or break your sanity.
The thing about time – and feeding your kids – is that everyone else seems to be managing it better. But here is the trick – they are not. Some people feel like they have it down, no worries, life is good. Smooth sailing here, never a stress inducing moment. But, those are usually the people who are so strung out on planning and goal setting and structure and routine, and putting on a good face … that while they have succeeded in looking like an image of perfectly balanced time and zero stress, they are often huddled in a corner somewhere worried about how to continue the façade.
I’m not saying that some people don’t have an effective way to manage time, stress, or particulars – like feeding a child. I’m just saying; don’t believe every Facebook status update you read. You either see the absolute worst part of a person’s day or the absolute best reflection of how they want people to see them. You don’t see the in between times – where most of our daily stress hangs out.
Here are some tips that help me manage the stress of balancing it all – family, clients, school drop off, school lunches, blog writing, networking, laundry, dishes – I’m getting tired thinking of it!
- Don’t stress. Ha. But seriously. Come up with a plan of action, and stick to it.
- Know what you have to do, and make time to do it. Lists work great for me, and seeing everything laid out on a calendar. Also, setting aside time during the day for specific tasks – like making school lunch after dinner – is helpful.
- Know what you want to do, and make time to do it. Don’t forget to schedule time to take a breather. You need to refresh yourself to be a fully present mom, employee, friend, sister, etc. It’s not a luxury. It’s a necessity. In fact, check out my amazing friend Elizabeth Small, over at Small Steps Big Benefits, for her tips on time management and focusing on you!
I always like to bring it back to feeding, because that’s why this blog and my services exist.
Here are three more tips, specifically related to managing the stress of mealtimes:
- Keep a routine. Even if it is ‘loose’. Children like to know what is coming, and some semblance of a routine goes a long way to managing mealtime chaos.
- Make sure your expectations are reasonable. Kids don’t eat a lot. Are you doling out adult sized portions, and expecting your child to clean their plate? Slow your roll sistah! Take a step back and reevaluate.
- In regards to time – meals should be short and sweet for young kids. No more than 30 minutes, and that is pushing it!
How do you manage time, stress, and being the modern day super woman??