Becoming a SAHM Why you need a Routine on day one
Becoming a SAHM was a very natural transition for our family, but the actual “work” that was so foreign to me, I stay at home, I don’t need a routine, and neither does my baby… HUGE MISTAKE! As soon as you are able; please for the love of all things, get yourself on a routine, it could be as open ended as each day you do something different or as precise as managing your hours during the day.
In my experience, I have found that having a routine, by events have worked well for my kids and for me! For example, I stick to my guns, after lunch, it’s quiet time for my boys. After school it’s reading time with my elementary school aged child, before dinner we pick up our toys, after dinner, it’s clean up and we go upstairs and get ready for bed, we do story and scripture study and then a prayer. My kids know that this is how it’s done and there is no added stress to the day because we have a routine that works for our family. It works so well that I don’t have to tell my kids anymore to do this, do that, they know and they just do it. It’s a sanity saver for everyone in our house.
I came about this very unexpectedly, with most good things, it came from my husband: make a list of everything you do, when you do it, and see if you can’t squeeze in some time for _____ (art). Phooey I said, I don’t want to be on a routine, I am not a structured person by nature, But I did it like a good girl does, and I found that I did, in fact, have a couple minutes here and there to _____ (art around.) When I started to get into a routine that is when I could add more fun things into my life, like watercolor, blogging, playing with my kids on a more regular basis, walk the kids and the dog to the nearby park. It’s such a simple way to add more time into your day. As a SAHM you are going to want all the time in the world to do things that make you happy.
I don’t get anymore me time you say to yourself:
If you are customed to having a lunch break, or your afternoons to do errands and you love that time to yourself, then yes, you don’t get that anymore but if you are able to have a different perspective on it, it might look something like this:
I get to stay home with 3 amazing children that take up all my time during the day. I know I need about 7 hours of sleep, so I get about 3 hours per day to myself. Let’s make it count.
What do I like to do when I am by myself?
What can I make my kids suffer through if I have to do it too? (grocery shopping and cleaning are my two favorite ones that I make them go with.) btw, they still love me.
What fun activities do I like to do, that I can do with my children? For me it’s all things art, walking on a trail, and baking. Which are all teachable moments.
Then when you have a detailed list from each category then you can start to see a picture of what you are willing to do with your kids, and what you want to do by yourself. And what enrichment activities your child/children and you could do together to build a relationship.
The other perspective that has worked for me is this philosophy:
Do one thing every day that makes you happy. I love my family but I am a creative and I have this crazy need to create. So doing something every day to make me happy doesn’t really cut it for me, I need to incorporate all my creativity into my life to be happy. If you are not a crazy creative like me, then I think doing something for yourself is a good thing. for an example, I read mostly non-fiction. so I let my kids listen to what I am reading then they are happy with the mommy time I gave them, I turn on a tv show and read to relax before supper and having a relaxing atmosphere before the dinner hour is always a joyful time to cherish.
The best advice I can give is to have a hobby that isn’t about kids, or the house (i don’t consider my couponing a hobby, it’s common sense, and part of being a SAHM that loves art materials.), Get a hobby and do it 15 mins. Here and there, If you are able to leave a project out and work on it when you can even better, (knitting crocheting if you need a couch hobby) for me I leave my watercolors out and dabble in it, or whatever crafting project I am working on out in my studio.
So to all SAHMS everywhere, My point is your Mental well-being is so important and it starts with a routine. There is no trick to sticking with a routine, it's all about follow-through and being consistent with it. Really the best gift you can give yourself and your family is sticking with a routine and following it.