So I've got these long to-do lists for every area of my life. Even when I am not working on one of the items on one of the lists, I am thinking about the lists and what needs to be added. I've gotten where I am in life because I can and do GET STUFF DONE. In fact, on a really good day (and even on some bad days), I can get multiple things done at one time. Yep, I am a multi-tasker.
And I am guessing you are too!
We are rewarded for being multi-taskers. We are proud of being multi-taskers. We survive by being multi-taskers. And all of this technology; well, it just enables us to be even greater multi-taskers.
But here's the challenge. As a spiritual, grounded person, I am also practicing mindfulness, which involves being present and in the moment.
Present and in the moment. Master multi-tasker. Can the two go hand and hand?
I am hearing from more and more busy, high-achieving, professional working moms that their desire is to be able to be more present when they are with their kids, AS WELL AS productive at both work and at home so that they can continue to be successful and things don't fall apart.
I do think this is possible. In my life and in the work I do with my clients, it's achievable by applying the following equation.
Simplicity + Structure + Self-Love = Serenity
Simplicity comes from simplifying our lives. This means getting clear about our priorities and then removing all the things from our plates (or our house or desk or car or ....) that don't fall under those priorities at this point in time. You don't have to do it all right now (and your kids don't have to either).
Creating a structure or routine that allows you time to be highly productive and knock things off your to-do list, as well as undistracted time with the kids, is key. Following a structure that says, "okay, it's Sunday evening; now is when I focus on getting the house tidied up," allows you to be present in the task at hand. Because you have a structure in place, you don't have to be thinking or worrying about when you are going to tidy up the house when you are playing a game with the kids after dinner. You know it's going to get done.
Self-Love is about having compassion for ourselves. It's about giving ourselves a break, cutting ourselves some slack and taking some time to focus on our needs. When you give to yourself (even if it's simply a 20 minute bath), it allows you to be more productive when you want to get things done and more present when you want to just BE with your kids.
When you simplify and you apply structure around your priorities and you provide yourself with self-love you will experience greater serenity in your life. You will feel more productive, inspired and motivated during the times of being productive, whether at work or around the house. You will also feel more present and in-the-moment when you are with your kids, as you will know that there will be time later for you to GET STUFF DONE.