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Practicing Self-Care By Simplifying Life (Home, Time & Mindset)

Podcast episode: practising self-care by simplifying life
Podcast episode: practising self-care by simplifying life

Welcome to The Wholehearted Mom Podcast! I am so honoured to have you here. You’ll be glad you joined. 

In this episode: 

  • Learn how to practice self-care by simplifying your time, money, & home. 
  • Baby steps towards minimalism.
  • Begin to prioritize your time as the basis for creating space for the things that matter most.
  • Learn how to challenge understand and challenge our limiting beliefs about motherhood

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Sarah Reckman

Episode #15 - Practicing Self-Care By Simplifying Life (home, time, & mindset)

1. Simplifying Your Home

Minimalism has been a game changer for me. Now when I first say minimalism I know many people think of having to get rid of all your things or the minimalism documentary because it is such as buzz word these days. But when I say minimalism I mean getting rid of the things in my home (and life) that don’t bring me or my family joy so i have more room in my life for the things that matter. 

Did you know that research tells us that clutter actually triggers our stress response system and causes stress in our bodies? 

I love both Marie Kondo and Allie Casazza’s methods for decluttering your home. I have folded both of them for years and read their books and have seen such a difference in my home and time. 

My living room can be a disaster and it only takes maximum 10 min at the end of the night (less if I can get the kids to help before dinner) to pick up and put away everything leaving the space calming and cozy once again. This is because 1) I have less stuff and 2) everything has a place. 

2. Simplifying Your Time

Motherhood is forever, but the time that we are actually raising your children is so short. 

As moms we are often feeling overwhelmed and short of time. This often leaves us feeling like we don’t have the time and space to care for ourselves and to breathe. The problem is, we can’t pour from an empty cup. We need to make time for ourselves but how do we find this time? Well the answer is simplifying our time and reprioritizing our tasks. 

Overwhelm comes when we assume everything is equally important in terms of the need to get done. And at the end of the day when we look at our to do list and realize we got very little checked off our list we feel crappy, exhausted, and deflated.

When you are able to do activities that fill you and get all your non-negotiables done you will feel less crappy at the end of the day, even if you didn’t get the whole To Do list done completely. You may even find some time because you waste less.

I encourage moms to try a time management exercise that I call the Pebble Jar Reflection. After completing this reflection I was shocked at how much time I was wasting. 

Pebble Jar Reflection Exercise

Imagine on a table is an empty jar along with rocks, pebbles, and sand. Your job is to fit as much into the jar as you can. If you start with the sand, you won’t be able to fit in the pebbles or the big rocks. 

If you start with pebbles, you’ll get the pebbles in and some sand but no big rocks. If you want to get those big rocks in you need to start with them first, then the pebbles as they will fall in place around the big rocks and finally the sand which will fill any cracks and crevices. This metaphor represents how we often fill our time.

Jar: is a symbol of our time which is finite.

Big rocks

Rocks symbolize the things that matter, things that give us fuel, and fulfill us. Big rocks don’t necessarily take more time, they just make us feel lighter and happier. (Ex. laughter with your child, reading a good book, reading with your kids, going for a walk, working on a hobby). I invite you to make a list of your big rocks. What are things that fill you up and make you a happier, healthier mom?

Pebbles

Symbolize the things that have to get done. (Ex. Cleaning, cooking, laundry, making school lunches). These tasks take energy and don’t fuel you but not doing them may have negative consequences. I invite you to make a list of your pebbles. 

Now one thing I want you to keep in mind when thinking of pebbles is your expectations around these tasks. Remember it’s ok if the laundry doesn’t get folded one day, or your kids socks don’t match. Set realistic expectations when writing out your pebble list.

Sand:

Symbolizes things that take time but don’t give much in return. They tend to be what we do to numb ourselves or tune out (Ex. Scroll on social media, watch Netflix, drink too much wine) We turn to them when we are exhausted but they can quickly fill the jar giving us less time for the things that matter. I invite you to write out your sand – what do you to veg? I realized I spent way too much time scrolling Instagram which didn’t actually fill me.

As moms, we often start with the pebbles which take energy so by the end of the day we are exhausted and start filling our jar with sand. We need to plan our jars differently – starting with the big rocks (at least 1 per day) then the pebbles and if at the end of the day you have time left to add that sand, that’s ok, no judgement, but you will feel better knowing that your day was fulfilling and productive. And you may even start to cut out some of that sand and go to bed early feeling relaxed and ready to take on the next day.

It is only after we have learned to prioritize our time that we will start to see the true benefits of time blocking strategies. If you want to learn how to time block send me a message and I will email you my recorded time-blocking lesson for free.  

3. Simplify Your Mindset

Simplifying our mindset is getting rid of the beliefs and thoughts that don’t serve us. 

Our thoughts are so powerful. I would say that mindset work is one of the most undervalued yet greatest impact strategies. We create what we call in cognitive behaviour therapy core belief and rules for life; these thoughts and beliefs govern how we interact with and perceive the world. 

Sometimes due to how we were raised, life experiencing and who we surround ourselves with we can develop limiting beliefs. Beliefs that don’t serve us and can actually cause harm. In order to really take care of ourselves on a deeper level we need to change our mindset and free ourselves from those limiting beliefs.

Podcast episode: practising self-care by simplifying life

Since our mama mindset is an established set of beliefs and attitudes, created by a combination of our past experiences of mothering with current societal and family/friend expectations or modelling, this means in order to fully understand our mindset we need to reflect on our beliefs about motherhood.

'I Believe' Reflection

I do this through the I believe Reflection in which you write down all the things both positive and negative that you truly believe about motherhood. Complete the following sentence. I believe….. Or A good mom is____

Some examples: 

  • I believe a good mom never raises her voice. 
  • I believe a good mom is put together herself. 
  • I believe a good mom makes her own baby food. 
  • I believe a good mom makes all the meals and takes care of the home.   

Speaking Truth Over Us

The last part of mindset work is speaking truth into your life whether that’s through scripture, positive quotes or affirmations. 

+ I am a mom who is doing her best. 

+ This moment will pass. 

+ I am beautiful, strong, and courageous. 

+ I can get through this. 

+ When I am stressed I just breathe. 

Although all of these concepts are super simple I know that it is sometimes really challenging to implement these strategies and make lasting change. If you would like help simplifying things in your life so you can go from overwhelmed to empowered and calm then my life coaching services may be the perfect fit for you. Since I am a registered social worker, services may even be covered by your healthcare benefits.